Steamboat Springs After putting together one of their best defensive performances of the year Friday night against a powerful Palisade team, Steamboat Springs dropped a closely-fought match Saturday in five games to the Delta Panthers (4-10 in Western Slope League play, 5-13 overall).
"The thing with Steamboat is it's such a good match-up," Panthers coach Leigh McLaughlin said. We're really the same kind of team - it's so up and down and the focus just goes back and forth."
The match's games were also traded back and forth, ultimately resulting in a Delta victory, 25-17, 16-25, 25-18, 17-25, 15-10.
Steamboat could not minimize errors and reproduce the same intense play that allowed them to beat Delta in a five-game, tie-breaking match during their previous, Sept. 23rd meeting.
"That was a crushing blow to our league standings," Sailors coach Wendy Hall said of the loss that now puts her team at 4-7 in league, potentially having to win their next three games to make a postseason run.
Steamboat was able to rebound from the devastating loss to get one win out of the three-game road trip, traveling to Olathe Saturday evening and again playing a close match to five games. After losing the first two games, Steamboat rallied to win 25-27, 17-25, 25-14, 25-22, 15-9.
"They could have easily packed their bags and left after three (games), but we found a way to win," Hall said. "I'm proud of them for hanging in, getting back in the match when they needed to and coming home with a win."
Although the emotional win will not count towards Steamboat's league standings, Hall thought it was vital to salvaging her team's spirits as they regroup from a tough day of ten games and a long bus ride and prepare for this week's final home games, 6:30 p.m. Tuesday against Moffat County and 6:30 p.m. Thursday against Battle Mountain.