Steamboat Springs The Steamboat Springs High School soccer team lost to Wheat Ridge, 5-1, in the first round of the Class 4A state playoffs Wednesday.
Steamboat, the No. 23 seed, played well in the first 15 minutes of the game before No. 10 Wheat Ridge's Reid Hukari took over the game.
Hukari scored on a header in the 17th minute to give the Farmers a lead they would never relinquish. Hukari added three more goals, and Alex Fernandez scored one.
"Their big boy up top was a game-changer," Steamboat Springs coach Rob Bohlmann said about the 6-foot-5 Hukari. "At the 15-minute mark, on their first corner, they loft up a ball, and he just popped up and smacked the ball in. We weren't able to get up and challenge him."
Bohlmann said Wheat Ridge controlled most of the rest of the game with a strong and experienced back four that made it tough for Steamboat to get runs on goal.
The Sailors finally broke through in the 65th minute when Andrew White scored. The goal came off feeds from Daniel Wright and Grant Murray.
"The difference in what we saw with their group, with the big boy and the defense in the back, is they didn't give us very much," Bohlmann said. "We were not able to create many threatening opportunities. : But their system of play was solid. It was not our day to get it done against a quality opponent like that."
In other league action, Eagle Valley advanced to the second round with a 2-1 win against Evergreen, while Battle Mountain lost to Longmont. Glenwood Springs' score wasn't available at press time.
The Sailors finish their season with a 10-6 overall record. They were 6-5 in the Western Slope League.