The Hayden High School volleyball team got exactly the start it didn't want Friday afternoon at the district volleyball tournament. The Tigers lost their first game, then trailed early in their second against Vail Mountain, a team they routed in three games earlier this season.
Everything changed midway through the second game, however. Hayden won that game and the next two to take the match, then beat Vail Christian in four games, as well.
Hayden beat Vail Mountain, 23-25, 25-23, 25-14, 25-15. It then handled Vail Christian, 25-15, 25-22, 16-25, 25-20.
The two victories put the Tigers on the fast track to advancing today, as the tournament concludes. Hayden will play Rangely this morning to wrap up the round-robin pool portion of the tournament.
If the Tigers win, they assure themselves a spot in the afternoon's semi-finals. They have a good chance at advancing no matter the outcome, though. Rangely, the tournament's No. 2 seed, was upset in the afternoon by Vail Christian, making Hayden the only pool team currently 2-0.
"We didn't play well in the first game or the second, then we just turned it around," Hayden coach Greg Johnson said. "We never looked back. We're looking forward to playing Rangely."
If Hayden reaches today's semi-finals and wins in that round, the team advances to regional competition.