Hart boys’ volleyball takes down Saugus 3-1 

Brandon Derham (22) of Hart goes up to block a shot by Saugus at Hart on Thursday, 033122. Dan Watson/The Signal

By Justin Vigil-Zuniga 

Signal Sports Writer 

The Indians (9-9-2, 5-3) got back on track in their four-set victory over the visiting Centurions (4-11, 2-9). 

Hart had some daunting scores of 25-12, 25-15, 19-25 and 25-14. 

The Indians were led Wednesday by standout Owen Douphner, who registered an impressive double-double with 21 kills and 19 digs. 

Saugus quickly found themselves in a 0-2 hole and on the verge of being swept by a team they’ve beaten earlier this season. 

Centurions head coach Serena LeDuff reiterated for her team to attack after they looked timid in the opening sets. The team put the two losses behind them and came out swinging in the third set. 

“We were just really timid and we weren’t attacking,” said LeDuff. “We weren’t playing together.” 

Saugus played Hart tight until late in the set. The Centurions got their biggest sparks from the hitting and serving of outside hitter Logan Marin and opposite hitter Cole Scherer. Marin led the team with six kills and Scherer dropped in a couple aces. 

Douphner had his best set, knocking down a third of his total kills and serving well on the line, giving Saugus’ passing fits. 

Owen Douphner (10) of Hart puts a shot over the net against Saugus defenders Nick Ciccone (18) and Landon Cookston (15) Saugus at Hart on Thursday, 033122. Dan Watson/The Signal

“It’s always nice having a player you can go to and trust at any moment of the game,” said Indians head coach Loy Mueller. 

The Centurions started to pull away late in the set and capitalized on some bad communication on the Hart side. A kill from Landon Cookston would end the set and officially get Saugus fired up and on the board. 

“We had our moments when we didn’t match their energy and their intensity,” said Mueller. “Credit to Saugus for coming out and swinging even harder on us, knocking us on our heels.” 

Mueller told his team to just get back to their game and what was working before in the first two sets. 

The fourth set looked like it might be another tight one early on, but after Saugus pulled in within striking distance down 8-10, Hart exploded. 

The Indians sparked a 10-1 run to end any hope of a fifth set. Hart got kills from all over during the run as well great serves from setter Tanner Andrew.  

Andrew also notched the double-double with 30 assists and 11 digs. 

The Centurions managed a mini rally but Scherer hit the ball out of bounds to end the game. 

Saugus has now dropped four straight games. The team still has a handful of league games left to make an impact but will be without two key starters. 

Saugus defenders go up to block a shot by Hart at Hart High on Thursday, 033122. Dan Watson/The Signal

“We need to end the season on how you want to look back at it and not the negatives,” said LeDuff. “Hopefully we’re able to come into practice tomorrow and ready to work hard with a positive attitude.” 

Hart has now won two in a row but dropped five of their last six before the winning streak. The team is looking strong but will need an extra push to get through their final stretch of the season with opponents Canyon, West Ranch and Valencia. 

The Indians will now enjoy their spring break before heading to West Ranch Thursday, April 14. Saugus will return home to host Golden Valley before heading into their break. 

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