Wednesday, September 15, 2004
Hayden volleyball coach Becky Burdick is done with moral victories. It's time for the Tigers to get point victories. That was her chief thought after Hayden came up short against North Park in its league opener Saturday.
The Wildcats defeated the Tigers, 25-21, 25-16, 25-14, in Walden. North Park is traditionally the top team in the Class 2A Western Slope League and a frequent visitor to the state tournament, but Burdick said Hayden played with North Park until the team gave in.
"It was going so well," she said. "We were actually winning, but then I don't know what happened. I think the girls got scared because we were winning. I'm determined to change that. I have such a good team. I have to get them past that."
The Wildcats, who will compete as a 1A school in the postseason but will remain a part of the 2A league, are a tall team with powerful hitters and a frustrating block. One of North Park's best players sat out Saturday's match with an ankle injury, but the Wildcats were able to overcome her absence with a solid blocking game.
Burdick said the Tigers became frustrated by the block but that she has to continue teaching the Hayden players that the best way around a block isn't always through it.
"We will get North Park," she said. "I have to keep pushing it."
If the players on Hayden's varsity team buy into Burdick's attitude, it's possible the Tigers might just get the win. The two teams meet again Oct. 14 in Hayden.
Burdick said the team frequently sets goals, and while playing with North Park is a step in the right direction, Burdick is done with goals. She said the team only needs one plan.
"I think they need to go in and win," she said. "It's self-esteem stuff. Once we get them past that, we are golden. They are a great team. They get along so well."
The loss drops Hayden to 3-2 overall and 0-1 in the league. The varsity originally was scheduled to play Steamboat Springs' junior varsity Monday in Hayden, but the Tigers' two JV teams faced the Sailors' JV and freshman squads instead.
Both those matches ended in Steamboat's favor.
Hayden's varsity and Steamboat's JV will meet Oct. 18 in Steamboat.
The Tigers next match is against Little Snake River at 6 p.m. today in Baggs, Wyo. The JV-A and JV-B teams play at 5 p.m. and 4 p.m., respectively.
Hayden opens league action at 6 p.m. Friday against Rangely in Hayden. The JV teams start at 4 and 5 p.m., as well.
-- To reach Melinda Mawdsley call 871-4208 or e-mail email@example.com