Steamboat Springs When the Sailors boys enter the Steamboat Springs gymnasium today to square off against the Battle Mountain Huskies, their sights will be set on winning their ninth consecutive league game.
The Sailors, who are 15-0 overall, are holding onto the No. 1 spot in the Western Slope.
The Rifle Bears are second with a 6-2 conference record, though they played Moffat County Friday night. A score for that game was not immediately available.
Steamboat posted a recent win over Moffat County, defeating the Bulldogs 53-43 Thursday in Craig.
Earlier this year, the Sailors defeated the Huskies 53-37. Ryan Kiely and Andrew Johnston were Steamboat's high scorers in that game.
Johnston sprained his ankle during the last Battle Mountain game but returned a week ago and has since helped fuel the Sailors' offensive attack.
The Huskies are 2-5 and 7-7, though Sailors coach Kelly Meek said they have several players who are capable of producing big games.
One of those players is 6-foot-6 center Josh Henry, who burned the Sailors for 14 points in the teams' previous outing.
The Sailors will be keying on Henry, guards Isaac Martinez and Jimmy Medina and small forward Austin Wignall, Meek said.
"Battle Mountain is quick and a very dangerous team," Meek said. "They've got four guys that can really kill you.
"The last time we played them we had a hard time separating ourselves from them."
The Sailors girls also play host to the Huskies Saturday with game time beginning at 6 p.m.
Brienna Combs, the Sailors' high scorer, was scheduled to undergo surgery Friday to have a tear in the labrum of her left shoulder repaired.
Steamboat coach Bruce Alston was hopeful Combs would be back in time for the district tournament that begins Feb. 20.
The last time the Sailors and Huskies met, it was Steamboat that prevailed 39-21 in Avon Jan. 6.
Battle Mountain has not won a basketball game this season.
"Battle Mountain hasn't had a lot of success in the win-loss column," Alston said. "But you never want to take a team for granted.
"I think what could hurt us against Battle Mountain is if we look past them and think we don't have to play hard."
The Sailors enter the contest at 8-6 overall and 4-4 in the conference.