Sailors drop two

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— Machebeuf goalie Othell Miller and captain David Glotfelty are the smallest players on their high school hockey team.

But their play against Steamboat more than made up for their size, as the visiting Buffaloes defeated the Sailors 3-1 at Howelsen Ice Arena Saturday afternoon.

Glotfelty had two goals and an assist, while Miller stopped 18 of the 19 shots the Sailors fired his way en route to Machebeuf's non-league victory over Steamboat.

The loss drops the Sailors to 3-3 overall, while their league record remains 1-1.

Steamboat lost to Regis Friday night in Denver, 3-2, before turning around and playing the Buffaloes less than 24 hours later.

Coach Dave Strang said the quick turnaround between games is something hockey players grow accustomed to over the years so he refused to list fatigue as a reason for the loss.

"It's not that big of a deal," Strang said. "We've practiced on consecutive days. It does make it tougher to recover, but that's why hockey players need to be the best conditioned athletes."

Steamboat captain Trask Donaldson echoed his coach's words and said the Sailors need to find their way out of this two-game rut they're stuck in.

"I don't know what to say," Donaldson said. "We just didn't have it. It's the little things we have to do better. We were 10 times better than (Machebeuf) but any team can win on any given day."

A majority of Steamboat's problems lately rest in its inability to finish plays. Both Strang and Donaldson said the plays are being run properly and the opportunities to score are there, the puck just isn't finding the net.

" It took us a little while to get going," Strang said. "We played well and had some good opportunities in the first, second and third periods. We've had difficulty finishing."

It didn't help that senior Jeff Franks, one of the Sailors' quickest skaters and top scorers, was serving a one-game suspension Saturday for being disqualified in Friday's game against Regis.

Strang said, however, that there are other players on Steamboat's team capable of finishing plays. They just need to get it done.

Despite a lethargic start, the Sailors were never really out of the game against Machebeuf until the closing 17 seconds when the Buffaloes extended their lead to 3-1 with an open-net goal.

Machebeuf went up in the first period around the 7:00 mark off Glotfelty's first goal of the game, and the Buffaloes extended their lead to 2-0 in the closing seconds of the second period off Glotfelty's second score.

Steamboat cut into Machebeuf's lead early in the third off junior Chris Timmerman's unassisted goal.

The Sailors did a nice job passing the puck around the perimeter before creating a jumble in front of the net, allowing Timmerman to work free and fire a shot that made it past Miller.

Machebeuf was on a power play in the game's final two minutes, but Steamboat was forced to pull goalie Cooper Lee to have another attacker in an effort to tie the game.

After several diving saves from Sailors defenders, preventing Buffalo goals, Steve Nepil found the back of the net for Machebeuf, giving his Denver-based team a 3-1 win.

Steamboat will have nearly an entire week of practice before facing Rampart at 5:15 p.m. Friday at Howelsen.

It marks the first of two games Steamboat will play at home next weekend. The Sailors also face Coronado at 1:15 p.m. Saturday.

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