Steamboat sweeps a pair from Devils |

Steamboat sweeps a pair from Devils

Luke Graham
Vail, CO Colorado
Matt Stensland/Special to the Daily

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colorado ” With two programs on the opposite spectrum of the Western Slope League, it’s safe to assume Steamboat’s 62-54 win against Eagle Valley on Friday would draw different reactions.

For the Steamboat boys basketball team ” ranked fifth in the state ” the sentiment was while it’s a win, the Sailors aren’t close to where they need to be.

“Our defense was horrible,” Steamboat guard Aaron Calkins said. “We need to improve so much. We didn’t listen to our defensive rules. I mean defensively it was just horrible.”

Eagle Valley on the other hand ” near the bottom of the league ” took the game and its performance and chalked it up as a huge step in the right direction.

“I’m really proud of how we played (Friday),” Eagle Valley coach Pat Gabriel said. “Steamboat’s a really quality team. They have been for a long time. They’re not used to losing, especially at their house. I thought our kids came out and competed and that’s what we wanted.”

The Devils gave the Sailors everything they could handle.

While Steamboat took a 37-27 lead into halftime, Eagle Valley certainly didn’t go away.

The Devils turned the Sailors first 12 possessions of the second half into eight missed shots and four turnovers.

Eagle Valley quickly closed the gap to 39-33 with less than four minutes to go in the fourth quarter.

“We had some good looks,” said Steamboat coach Kelly Meek of the first 4:40 of the second half, where the Sailors didn’t have a field goal. “We missed chippies, wide open 3s, we missed everything. Mid-range, power layups, we just missed everything.”

But as is the case with this year’s Steamboat team, when the game tightens the Sailors excelled.

Steamboat immediately went on a 9-0 run, closed the third quarter on a 12-4 run and extended its lead to 51-38.

Although Steamboat was outscored 16-11 in the fourth quarter, the three-minute stretch at the end of the third, proved to be enough.

Calkins led the Sailors with 29 points – including seven 3-pointers – and 11 rebounds. Michael Vandahl chipped in 13 points, seven rebounds and five assists.

Scott House led the Devils with 21 points. Cesar Castillo added 12, while Zach Ramsay had eight points and 10 rebounds.

Eagle Valley travels to Moffat County today.

Lady Devils come close

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS ” After weeks of a strong halves, quarters and short stretches, the Steamboat Springs girls basketball team finally put together a whole game.

The end result was a 50-43 win against Eagle Valley, giving Steamboat its first league win of the year.

“I mean it was a decent week of practice,” said Sailors coach John Ameen, whose team ended a nine-game losing streak. “It was just working, working, working on what we’ve been doing well. That was it.”

It may have also been some newfound composure.

The Devils jumped out to an 18-11 lead with 7:02 left in the second quarter, thanks in large part to 12 first quarter points from post player Jackie Eberhard.

But where the game usually gets away from Steamboat, the Sailors responded. Keyed by nine points from Emily Metscher and Darcy Hornstein, Steamboat ended the half on a 16-4 run to take a 27-22 lead into halftime.

When Steamboat wasn’t settled on the offensive end, the Sailors defense more than made up for it. Steamboat held Eagle Valley to 17-of-52 shooting from the field, including 5-of-14 in the fourth quarter. The Sailors also caused 16 Devils turnovers.

Eagle Valley continued to battle back, even closing within four at 47-43 with 1:31 in the game.

But Steamboat hit 4-of-6 free throws down the stretch to put the game away.

“We went cold and stopped moving,” Eagle Valley coach Ken Reagan said, “and they started doing the right things.”

The win improved Steamboat to 2-12 overall and 1-5 in league play. Eagle Valley dropped to 2-12 and 1-5.

Gracie Stockdale led Steamboat with 19 points. Eberhard led the Devils with 19 points while Eagle Valley’s leading scorer Jeanette Baker was held to six points.

Eagle Valley now heads to Moffat County to take on the Bulldogs.

“For some reason we play the tough teams well,” Reagan said of the second-place Bulldogs. “Hopefully we take some things from this game and play well.”

To reach Luke Graham, call 871-4229 or e-mail

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