Sailors girls fall short in Rifle

Steamboat hoops' mental lapses lead to loss in fast-paced game

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— Despite a solid start, the Steamboat Springs High School girls basketball team suffered mental lapses that led to a loss Friday in Rifle, 61-33.

After trailing only 9-6 after one quarter and 13-10 with a little more than five minutes to go in the second quarter, Steamboat coach John Ameen said the game sped up and the Sailors had a hard time reacting.

"The press is what got us," Ameen said. "It turned us into helter-skelter and they started forcing turnovers. Defensively we weren't bad, but it's playing those defensive possessions over and over again."

For the last five minutes of the first half, Rifle went on a 13-2 run to take a 26-12 lead into the break.

Ameen said he wasn't disappointed with his team's effort, noting the Sailors (1-9, 0-2 in league play) played with the necessary intensity to win the game.

He said the difference in the game was prolonged stretches of mental lapses.

"That's what we have to figure out. I don't know if it's we're tired physically, leading to mentally getting tired," Ameen said. Rifle "wasn't that deep : I don't know. Our minds get sped up, and we start turning the ball over."

Although Ameen wasn't happy with the loss, he said Steamboat played much better than during its Tuesday loss to Moffat County.

"We played, I can't think of a number of times better than we did on Tuesday," Ameen said. "I'm happier, but what I told them before the game is 'we've seen what you're capable of, now you need to play up to your capability.'"

Gracie Stockdale led the Sailors with 15 points. Darcy Hornstein and Lizzie Stoll each scored five, while Colleen King added 11 rebounds.

The schedule doesn't get any easier for the Sailors.

Steamboat welcomes top league contender Glenwood Springs at 4 p.m. today.

Ameen said Glenwood's an explosive team led by sisters Katrina and Sharaya Selsor.

"They can put some points on the board quick," Ameen said. "They have two good guards and it will be key for us getting matchups with those two."

- To reach Luke Graham, call 871-4229

or e-mail lgraham@steamboatpilot.com

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