Steamboat Springs senior Hanson Buchner battles Eagle Valley's Jose Carlos Gonzalez for a ball Tuesday night. The Sailors won 1-0.

Photo by Luke Graham

Steamboat Springs senior Hanson Buchner battles Eagle Valley's Jose Carlos Gonzalez for a ball Tuesday night. The Sailors won 1-0.

Steamboat Springs soccer team outlasts Eagle Valley in the rain

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Luke Graham

Steamboat Springs senior Peyton Trask heads a corner kick wide in the first half against Eagle Valley. The Sailors won, 1-0.

— Roughly five minutes into Tuesday’s Eagle Valley vs. Steamboat Springs soccer game. the skies opened up.

It started with a slight drizzle before turning into an all out downpour. It melted like snow.

By the 10 minute mark, it was evident the slop from the rain on the field was going to carry over to the play.

It seemed like the first goal was going to win.

In a game dominated by midfield play, Steamboat was the first to score on a beautiful effort by senior Hanson Buchner.

In the 35th minute, Buchner took a ball from John Vande Velde at the top of the 18 and weaved through a trio of Devils defenders. He poked a goal in with his toe, sending the Sailors to a 1-0 win.

“That was big for sure,” Steamboat coach Rob Bohlmann said. “It was sloppy. Even conditions aside, we felt our play needed to be better. But they did the defensive work and held onto the game. We take away the positives and get another win in league, which is big.”

Each side, amidst soaked jerseys and water gushing from the bottoms of soles with each step, struggled to get anything going in the offensive zone.

The Devils consistently crowded their own box, not allowing the Sailors (5-4 overall, 4-3 in Western Slope League) to find much. Conversely, Eagle Valley had some decent runs in the first half, mainly by junior David Ortiz, but could never handle Steamboat’s defenders.

Finally Buchner took control. On a play that was close to offsides, Buchner finally broke through.

“It was just a little loss of concentration,” Eagle Valley coach Bratzo Horruitiner said. “We created some opportunities. I thought we generated more opportunities than Steamboat, we just couldn’t put it away. We both deserved to win, and Steamboat walked away with it. I knew if we make a mistake, we’d pay for it.”

In the second half, Steamboat blanketed Ortiz with a defender in front and back, completely taking Eagle Valley’s offensive push out of the game.

Led by the play of Peyton Trask and Ryan Walker, Steamboat got through with a scrappy win.

“We’ll play scrappy when we need to,” Bohlmann said. “But we want to clean things up when we’re in possession of the ball.”

Steamboat, after losing three straight, has looked mightily better. The team is 2-1 in its last three, the only loss a 1-0 defeat to Class 4A’s No. 3 team Evergreen.

“We’ve responded very well,” Bohlmann said. “Last week was a fantastic week for us.”

A young Eagle Valley team fell to 3-6 overall and 3-5 in league play.

Steamboat next plays at 11 a.m. Saturday at Rifle. Eagle plays at 2 p.m. Tuesday against Delta.

To reach Luke Graham, call 970-871-4229 or email lgraham@SteamboatToday.com

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