Steamboat Springs Locked in the middle of a gritty and competitive Western Slope conference, the Steamboat Springs High School girls soccer team doesn’t have much room for error.
2014 Sailors girls soccer schedule
- March 6: Steamboat 1, Summit 0
- March 8: Battle Mountain 5, Steamboat 0
- March 13: Steamboat 4, Eagle Valley 1
- March 15: Palisade 1, Steamboat 0
- March 21: Eagle Valley 3, Steamboat 2
- March 22: Grand Junction 7, Steamboat 2
- March 29: Battle Mountain 4, Steamboat 0
- April 2: vs. Fruita Monument, canceled
- April 5: Steamboat 6, Delta 0
- April 8: Steamboat 6, Summit 0
- April 12: Wheat Ridge 3, Steamboat 0
- April 15: Steamboat 4, Glenwood Springs 0
- April 17: Steamboat 7, Rifle 0
- April 29: Steamboat 3, Glenwood Springs 0
- May 1: Battle Mountain 3, Steamboat 0
- May 2: Steamboat 2, Fruita 1
It didn’t need any Tuesday night as the Sailors looked masterful at times in a 6-0 win against Summit in Steamboat Springs.
Steamboat controlled the vast majority of the game, often moving the ball with ease to set up what was a relentless attack on the Tigers’ defense.
“We were just really happy with the improvements in possessing the ball,” Steamboat coach Rob Bohlmann said.
The key, he said, was simple.
“The ball moves faster than people can run,” he said.
It did Tuesday.
The Sailors opened with a goal from Mackenzie Gansmann 10 minutes in, the sophomore putting away a through ball for the 1-0 lead.
Natalie Bohlmann scored on another fast-break opportunity, hammering in a pass from Jordan Floyd, and Ocoee Wilson blasted in a goal for a 3-0 first-half lead in the 36th minute.
Things only got prettier in the second half.
Senior Maddie Ruppel tipped in a pass from classmate Alice Holmquist just a minute into the second half.
“That one was prime,” Ruppel said about the set-up pass.
That senior-to-senior combination is rare for this squad, with three seniors, but Ruppel said that hasn’t been a problem.
“All those younger players, they’re all so talented and they work well together,” she said.
They work well with their elders, too, and that led to Ruppel’s second goal. In a picture-perfect play, Ruppel deposited a pass from sophomore Logan Sankey in the 67th minute.
Freshman Maggie Henry added a highlight of her own to round out the scoring, dancing between defenders in the box before knocking in her first goal of the game.
“Steamboat played really well,” Summit coach Tommy Gogolen said. “They did a good job of passing and they had good crosses and good finishes. We were a little flatfooted, and they outplayed us.”
It was a major reversal from the teams’ previous meeting this season, a game Steamboat still took, but only 1-0.
For Summit, the trick is turning some of the “almost” games it’s had this season against quality competition into wins, and the team will try again Thursday at home against Eagle Valley. The Devils beat the Tigers, 4-1, last month.
“But we feel like we can play with them,” Gogolen said. “We will work on it.”
Steamboat, meanwhile, has an essential but difficult stretch ahead beginning with a Saturday trip to play at Wheat Ridge, a tough Front Range opponent. The Sailors, 5-4, return to play at home Tuesday against Glenwood Springs, one of the top Western Slope teams, and still are hoping to squeeze in a rescheduled game against Fruita Monument, the leaders of the Southwestern conference, all before spring break.
“Those three games, they will be a challenge,” Rob Bohlmann said.
To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253, email jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @JReich9
Join the Yampa Valley VIP email club