The River Hawks seized the opportunity.
“It was something every server picked up on her own,” Meier said. “We were looking for gaps and hitting them.”
Prince of Peace made a couple of attempts to stop Easton Valley’s early momentum, but kills by Meier stopped that twice. She finished the first set with five kills.
The River Hawks used a 12-3 run to push the lead to 21-10, then Prince of Peace couldn’t get the ball into its offense on successive serves by Meier as she helped close out the first win.
“The last few weeks of the season, we started to serve much better,” Larson said. “We struggled early. We’ve worked toward placing the ball to the outsides. The girls have gotten more confident, and it shows.”
It was more of the same in the second set.
A five-point run put Easton Valley ahead 6-1, it added a 5-1 run moments later, followed by a 7-1 surge that included a pair of aces from Brilee Deardorff, who finished with four, and helped put the game away.
The Irish (1-20) showed resolve in the third set, and it appeared early that they might avoid a sweep. Sydney Laufenberg served up an ace off the net that put the Irish in front 4-2, and a three-point run gave them an 8-4 lead.
A kill by Mallory Kilburg returned the serve to Easton Valley, and senior Gabriela Vasconcelos pretty much put the game away from the service line.
By the time the Irish scored again, on a kill by Erin Kuehn, the River Hawks led 16-8.
“When I get behind the line to serve, I try to keep it in and do my best,” Vasconcelos said. “I was looking for a spot. Once we got going, we kept going.”
Prince of Peace did get within 17-11 and 18-5, but Easton Valley responded with six consecutive points before a fitting end on a kill by Meier.