Steamboat Springs Kelly Meek said his basketball team has to put the recent loss at Moffat County behind it because this weekend's opponents -- Glenwood Springs and Rifle -- surely don't care what happened to Steamboat Springs a week ago.
Meek spoke on behalf of his Sailor boys on Wednesday, but it's a speech girls basketball coach Steve Moos could have delivered as well.
Last Friday, the Sailor girls and boys teams fell to rival Moffat County. However, the Western Slope league title has not been clinched on either side.
"If we can play well this weekend, we're very much in the thick of it," Moos said.
The Steamboat girls basketball team is 10-1 overall and 3-1 in the league heading into tonight's game against Glenwood.
Before the Moffat County game, Moos said the Bulldogs would be a good team to measure his Sailors against. He wasn't disappointed.
The Sailors learned they need to be more aggressive on offense and cannot afford to give a talented team an early lead by being timid on the court.
"You rarely win every game," Moos said. "But it hurts to lose when you feel you didn't give your best effort. This weekend is actually bigger than last weekend, and I've told the team that."
Glenwood enters tonight's contest 6-4 overall and 2-1 in the league. Moos said the Demons have a strong inside game. Rifle will come to Steamboat on Saturday with as talented a team as the one in Moffat County.
"They have great all-around balance," Moos said of the Bears. "They have a solid point guard, a great scoring forward and a strong post. Again, like Moffat County, these are teams we haven't had much success against."
Steamboat's boys are in a four-team race with the same teams as the girls. The Sailors are currently 9-2 overall and 3-1 in the league heading into tonight's game against the 4-7 Demons and Saturday's game against the 6-5 Bears.
In league play, Glenwood is 2-2 and Rifle is 4-0.
"There's a lot of action in these three weeks," Meek said. "It's really crucial that we rebound with enthusiasm and effort following (last Friday's) loss, and I think we will."
However, his team can't see this as a big weekend, Meek said. The players must see this weekend for what it is -- two games, against two teams, on two different nights.
"We're big into next play, next team so they don't get too high or too low," Meek said. "We very much stay in the moment. Some of our kids wanted to win too badly (at Craig) and were looking at the end result instead of the possession at hand."
The effort, however, was there, Meek said, and he was pleased to see his team play hard.
The one part about the Sailors' game that needs adjustment is the technique, particularly the margin between great play and poor play, Meek said. He wants his team to display more consistency.
It will have a chance tonight.
Glenwood is traditionally strong in its own gym, so Meek said he expects a good game from the Demons. Steamboat turns around to play Rifle at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at home. The girls' game is slated to start at 6 p.m.
But first things first.
"For us to stay in the league title hunt, we have to stay focused on Glenwood," Meek said. "I fully expect us to be ready to go."
-- To reach Melinda Mawdsley call 871-4208 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org