Tigers volleyball wins in three games

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— For the second consecutive match, the Hayden High School volleyball defeated its opponent in three games.

After rolling through North Park on Tuesday, Hayden evened its league record at 1-1 with a 25-17, 25-20, 25-20 win against Paonia on Friday.

"Those are big wins for us," Hayden volleyball coach Stephanie Davis said. "I think we're starting to play better as a team."

Despite having a relatively young lineup - with Holli Salazar, Kylee Sweetser and Rachael Koehler as the only holdovers from last year's varsity team - Davis said the team is coming together and getting production from all parts of the lineup.

Behind strong serves from Janna Hoza and Brianna Ford, the Tigers were able to take advantage of points early.

Then, with the setting of Lissa Hoza and Jade Stees not allowing Paonia to set up blockers, Hayden was able to work itself through three easy games.

"First of all, our serves were outstanding," Davis said. "I thought we played well as a team and we set all over the front."

Maybe the biggest thing to come out of the game for Davis was her team's ability to play solid for three consecutive games.

After Hayden (5-4 overall) struggled to maintain its focus after the first game in its previous matches, Davis said the past two Tigers' wins show the team is progressing.

"We actually figured out how to keep going after the first game," Davis said. "We've won nearly every first game we've played this year and then we've lost the second. "Everybody is new on varsity except for a couple of girls and I think we're starting to play better as a team and learning when to make a play and when to just get the ball over."

Koehler led the Tigers with 39 blocks. Sweetser finished with eight kills.

Hayden returns to action Friday when the team travels to Plateau Valley for another league contest.

- To reach Luke Graham, call 871-4229

or e-mail lgraham@steamboatpilot.com

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