When it came to crunch time, Orem volleyball coach Kristy Pack got mean.

And so did her players.

The Tigers held off a tough Timpanogos effort on Tuesday, taking a close Set 4 to claim a 3-1 (25-21, 25-15, 25-27, 25-22) Region 7 victory.

Orem won the first two sets, lost the third and had control of the fourth when the home team made a run to get back to get back within one at 23-22. Bella Green scored on a tip to get Orem to match point at 24-22 and a Timpanogos net violation brought the match to a close.

“Honestly I got mean and so did the girls,” Pack said. “I think that the girls have gotten really good at taking criticism and taking advice, really holding to it and implementing it in their play. We able to pull out that win because we were not just the hammer, we were the man that wields the hammer. We played smarter and harder. That’s how we got them out of system and got the win.”

The Tigers were getting kills from an assortment of players in the first two sets, including freshman Sammy Blackett, Kassidy Blumenthal, Tori Hollingshead and Aubrey Nielsen, to take control. A strong service game allowed Orem to earn a 21-11 lead in Set 2 and went into Set 3 up two sets to none.

Timpanogos turned things around and broke through by taking advantage of back-to-back Orem errors to win the third set 27-25 to force the fourth set.

The score was tied at 14 when Orem went on a 6-0 run. Back-to-back kills by Blackett and a service ace by Reegan Merrill gave the Tigers a commanding 21-15 lead. But Timpanogos wasn’t done and closed to 23-22 on an ace from Jaycee Lee.

Orem is like the rest of the teams in Region 7 chasing established powers Lehi and Timpview as the season moves forward.

“I like a challenge,” Pack said. “That’s why I’m here. What I told the girls in the locker room is that we’re not there yet but we’re on our way. I think the girls have put in so much work and improved so much. They’ve bought into the idea that they really can improve and really can win together as a team. We just need to keep rising.”

Orem (8-7 overall, 1-1 Region 7) travels to Mountain Ridge on Thursday to continue region play and Timpanogos (4-5, 0-2) will host Alta.

Follow Darnell Dickson on Twitter

@darnellwrites or e-mail him at ddickson@heraldextra.com.

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