Monday, December 10, 2007
Luke Graham's column appears periodically in the Steamboat Today. Contact him at 970-871-4229 or lgraham@SteamboatToday.com.
Find more columns by Luke here.
Steamboat Springs Success is a byproduct of dedication.
Maybe nobody knows this better than Steamboat Springs High School boys basketball player Colby Kostur.
Kostur has always been a good player. He's a three-year starter on the team and last year was the Sailors' third-leading scorer.
But through strenuous summer and fall work and countless hours in the gym, Kostur has become a great player.
"He's a workhorse. He's an absolute workhorse," Steamboat coach Kelly Meek said after Saturday's 61-50 win against D'Evelyn. "He was so efficient in everything he did. (Saturday), he was playing a 6-foot-8 stud. I mean, this kid (D'Evelyn's James Rader) has hurt people for a long time. Colby locked up on him, and it was a battle."
It was a battle Kostur - who stands 6-foot-2 - won.
However, it wasn't a surprise Kostur held Rader in check. It's something he has been doing for a while.
The senior usually guards the opponent's best post player. For Kostur, that means he's always the smaller guy, usually not the quickest guy and often not the most athletic guy. But you'd be hard pressed to find someone who outworks Kostur.
On Saturday, Kostur's physical play and efficient positioning frustrated Rader so much that the D'Evelyn senior became a perimeter player in the second half.
But this is where Kostur's hard work and dedication come in.
As Meek says, there might not be a player who has been more dedicated to the program. Kostur, by his own admission, can't pinpoint the last day he didn't touch a basketball.
That dedication has made Kostur the quintessential teammate. While it's his tenacity on defense that more than gets the job done, it's his hard work and dedication on offense that has made Kostur more than just a third scoring option.
He, along with fellow seniors Aaron Calkins and Michael Vandahl, present defenses with quite the problem. All three can score inside or out.
But it's Kostur who holds the key to the Steamboat offense, as the other two will be the focal points of opposing defenses throughout the season.
On Friday, against Green River, Wyo., in a 72-70 overtime win, Kostur showed just the type of player he can be. He poured in 27 points and became Steamboat's go-to guy (all while defending a 6-foot-7 post player, of course).
While Kostur's improvement and game provide just a snapshot of the Steamboat team, it's players with Kostur's dedication and tenacity that will help the Sailors make a deep playoff run.
And that would certainly be a success.