Hayden volleyball beats Soroco, West Grand in triangular

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— It was a day that mucked up the Western Slope League standings, but when it was over, the Hayden High School volleyball team was thrilled to be playing in the mud.

The Tigers swept Soroco and West Grand on Saturday in a triangular in Kremmling, vaulting themselves ahead of the Rams and launching a crazy two-week scramble to firm up district playoff seeds.

“That’s the best we’ve played this year,” Hayden coach Holli Palmer said. “They just played really, really well, and I’m so proud of them.”

Hayden beat Soroco, 25-18, 25-13, 25-19, avenging a four-game loss from earlier this season, then beat West Grand for the second time this year, 25-20, 25-20, 25-16.

“We’re starting to play like a team,” Palmer said. “Everyone is contributing; everyone’s excited. We just have to keep working now. We’re not quite where we want to be.”

Hayden freshman Jordan Temple picked up seven kills against Soroco, and senior Erin Koehler led the way against West Grand, notching nine. Koehler and Aubree Haskins had five blocks each against the Rams, and Haskins had seven more against the Mustangs.

For Soroco, the loss to Hayden was only the start of a bad day and another step back from the team’s early season high tide. The Rams also fell against West Grand in four games, losing to the Mustangs for the second time this season.

“We didn’t have good serve receive, and we were playing flat the whole time,” Soroco coach Kim Reeves said. “It was very frustrating and very tough.”

She said that junior Micaela Meyer played well but that, generally, the team struggled and will be back in the gym this week looking for answers.

“I’m hoping they’re going to come out, pick it up this week and be able to handle playing under the pressure,” Reeves said.

— To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253 or email jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com

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