Craig If there was a mercy rule in girls high school basketball, the Moffat County High School versus Steamboat Springs game would have been over at halftime.
Instead, the MCHS Bulldogs took a 38-2 first-half advantage to coast to an 82-17 Western Slope victory.
Steamboat Springs dropped to 1-14 overall and 1-9 in league play while MCHS improved to 17-2, 9-2.
Nine Bulldogs combined for the team's 82 points in the victory that completed the season sweep against the rival Sailors.
Steamboat was held to single digits until halfway through the fourth quarter, when they tallied all but five of their total points.
Conversely, five Bulldogs ended the night with double-figure scoring.
MCHS began the high-scoring affair early by jumping out to a 22-2 lead after one quarter of play.
The Bulldogs seemingly didn't let up in the second quarter after putting 16 points on the scoreboard while shutting out the Sailors and heading into the locker room at intermission with a 38-2 lead.
Steamboat junior Lizzie Stoll went 1-for-2 at the free-throw line with 1:40 remaining in the third quarter to end the scoring drought for her and her teammates.
Stoll was a perfect 2-for-2 shortly thereafter, but the damage had been done with a 60-5 deficit heading into the final eight minutes of play.
While MCHS coach Craig Mortensen was giving his bench players some varsity playing time, Steamboat coach John Ameen let his body language speak volumes.
With his team down by more than 50 points Ameen spent most of the second half with his hands resting on his face while watching from one knee.
MCHS pulled back on the throttle a bit in fourth quarter as they outscored Steamboat, 22-12.
It was the only quarter that the red-and-white clad visitors tallied more than three points.
"When you come out flat against that strong, and that aggressive of a team it makes it that much harder on yourself," Ameen lamented. "I told the girls that the best way to attack pressure is to create pressure, and we weren't able to do that tonight. I guess you could say the 12 fourth-quarter points was a consolation, but it's just a matter of you cannot play a game that hesitant."
Mortensen said he felt bad regarding the fact that he didn't want to rub salt in the wounds of Steamboat by leaving the starters in for so long, but on the flip side his kids need the playing time.
After being told that junior Amy Dilldine was the second-highest scorer on the team with 15 points, he was all smiles.
"That's great that one of our coming, off-the-bench girls can score like that," he said.
"Overall, I think our bench did okay. This time of year, I would rather have a tougher opponent, but you have to play the schedule you are given."
Ameen said he hopes the morale level of his squad is not affected heading into the team's final three games.
"Overall, the morale level is what you would expect it to be, he said. For how poorly we played, we have to play that much better. We have to be ready tomorrow, and I think a 3-0 record to end our season is quite realistic."