There will be no easing into the Intermountain Conference volleyball schedule for Hood River Valley and The Dalles when they open league play Thursday on the road.

Hood River (2-3) is at Ridgeview of Redmond, and The Dalles (1-2) will be at Crook County of Prineville. The pedigree of the Gorge schools’ opponents is impressive, including the recent co-regular season championship they shared this past COVID-shortened spring season.

Ridgeview was the 2019 Class 5A Oregon state champion, and Crook County has eight state championship volleyball trophies, albeit the latest one was in 2013.

After winning its opening home game over North Marion Sept. 2, The Dalles was hoping to notch a second straight win when they traveled to Eastern Oregon to face the Class 4A La Grande Tigers (2-1). The Lady Riverhawks were unable to maintain their momentum though as they lost a nonleague match, 3-0.

Hood River won two straight matches — Sept. 7 at Columbia High in White Salmon and Sept. 9 at home against Estacada — before dropping tourney matches this past weekend. The Eagles lost in straight sets to McMinnville and Corvallis at the Tualatin Tournament.

Hood River has one final nonleague tuneup Tuesday (Sept. 13) at Banks before entering IMC play.