A7 HRV vs TD.JPG

The Dalles’ Spencer Taylor (32) and Hood River Valley’s Ian Searcy (3) tipping-off at Tuesday’s game at Vannet Court in Hood River.

With bleachers nearly full and an electric atmosphere at Vannet Court, Hood River Valley’s varsity boys basketball team defeated The Dalles 64-55 in the season’s final game. Christopher Dirks, Eagles’ head coach, said the crowd’s energy played part in Tuesday’s victory.

“We really did a great job feeding off the energy of the crowd and I think they fed off of us as well,” Dirks said. “It was the loudest I have ever heard the gym in all my years of being involved in this program as a player or coach.”

The Eagle squad scored seven unanswered points in the first quarter. It took about three minutes for the Riverhawks to score. The Dalles, however, picked up the pace in the second quarter, Riverhawks head coach Greg Cummings said.

“(Freshman) Styles DeLeon had two big threes in the second quarter and really propelled us,” Cummings said. “It gave us that edge and lead going into half time. our defensive effort and intensity really picked up in the second quarter. I think we held Hood River to eight or nine points in the second quarter and I think we scored 20 or something like that. It was a good effort.”

The Dalles’ junior Spencer Taylor helped his team’s efforts with 16 points. Taylor scored a couple three-pointers in the third and missed was 8-9 from the free throw line, Cummings said.

Third quarter had much closer competition with the lead being traded about three times. As the game entered the fourth quarter, HRV began to pull away, becoming more offensively aggressive and synchronized.

“All our wins were a team effort,” Dirks said. “A lot of players made plays when we needed it. For example, that 20 second stretch where (junior) Alex Arbogast hit a three then got a steal and passed it to (sophomore) Emanuel Romero for a layup, then Romero got a steal and made another layup, then we forced a turnover to set up an inbounds play where Romero hit another three is a great example of teamwork.”

Another player who shined the most was senior Noah Webster. Webster found his stride, scored 23 points and got the “MVP” chant from the crowd in the fourth quarter.

“The seniors went out with a bang with the loudest gym I have ever been in,” Dirks said. “They left their stamp on the program as only the second team in 26 seasons to have a winning record. All in all, I think this team helped take another step forward for basketball in Hood River County. I appreciate all the hard work and dedication they all put into the season, and all of the support from the community. I am excited about where this program is headed.”