Steamboat Springs soccer coach Rob Bohlmann came to Monday's practice prepared. So did his team. Each girl passed a fitness test given by the coaches to ensure she was at a level comparable to the beginning of vacation.
The Steamboat Springs School District's spring break coincides with the closing of the Steamboat Ski Area, so its students don't go on spring break until mid-April at the earliest. Consequently, the Sailors are forced to make up for lost time at one of the most important times of the regular season -- the final weeks.
Soccer is just one of the spring sports affected, but the timing is particularly inconvenient for the girls team because it is undefeated in the Western Slope League and in a favorable position for postseason play, assuming players can regain their pre-break focus.
Steamboat earned a forfeit against Glenwood Springs on Thursday but turns around to host Evergreen at 4 p.m. in a nonleague game today at Dudley Field.
In addition to soccer, baseball, girls tennis, girls and boys lacrosse and track and field resume this week.
The girls lacrosse team traveled to Wheat Ridge High School for two games Thursday. The boys lacrosse team is at the Bud Felch Tournament on Saturday in Englewood.
The girls tennis team hosts Glenwood Springs at 12:30 p.m. Saturday at The Tennis Center. Unlike the soccer team, the tennis team returned from break a "little flat," coach John Aragon said.
"We have to get rolling again," he said. "I hope they didn't lose that momentum they had going. They were playing well before break."
Glenwood Springs is one of the better teams in Steamboat's region, so Saturday's matches will help in preparation for regionals May 7 and 8 in Grand Junction. The top two finishers in each division advance to state.
In track and field, the Sailors were competing at a high level before break, and they will need to be sharp Saturday if they expect to perform well at the Clint Wells Invitational in Craig.
The 23-team field is stacked with talent. The meet, which opens with the sprint medley at 9:20 a.m., also is a state pre-qualifying meet.
With girls tennis, soccer and track eyeing the postseason, Steamboat's baseball team will bring its season to a close Saturday at home -- finally.
The baseball team is putting up temporary fences at Emerald Field so it can host Resurrection Christian, a new 2A school from the Loveland area, in a doubleheader at 10 a.m. Saturday. It will be the only time Steamboat has played in town this season.
Seven seniors have or will bring their time as Sailors to an end. For those able to play this weekend, they will have the luxury of doing it at home, assuming the weather cooperates. They are: Chris Dombey, Nick Hughes, Kevin Martin, Sean Murphy, Jack Means, Richard Sauer and Teal Taylor.
Coach Sean Hicks had positive things to say about each member of this group, though he worked with several of the boys for only one season.
He applauded those players who endured the coaching change that brought him in three seasons ago and the transition that followed as he began to implement his methods. This year's team is in a position to finish 9-10, which would be the best finish in school history.