Steamboat hockey shuts out Battle Mountain, 3-0 |

Steamboat hockey shuts out Battle Mountain, 3-0

Luke Graham

— If there's no such thing as an easy win — as Steamboat Springs High School hockey coach Jeff Ruff says — then Wednesday's opening game of the season was about as close as a team can get. 

Steamboat unveiled a young and talented team Wednesday in Battle Mountain, running away with a 3-0 win.

The Sailors outshot the Huskies, 26-11 and, if it weren't for a slew of penalties, likely would have added to that number. 

"We're real happy with the way these guys came to compete," Ruff said. "We saw some good things from the young guys. We knew to have a successful campaign, they would have to play above the level they are used to."

Steamboat got the scoring started early in the first period when Jackson Perry picked up a goal to make it 1-0. Matt Hale added another one minutes later to send the Sailors into the first intermission with a 2-0 lead. Both goals were assisted by Ben Wharton and Alex Elliott. 

"It's a fun line to work with," Ruff said. "They are going to produce a bunch. We want to have three lines that can constantly put one or two in the back of the net. That takes the pressure off of our big guns." 

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Hale added a late third period goal shorthanded for the final score. 

Trent Trask had a light night in goal, stopping all 11 shots. 

Steamboat next plays at 5 p.m. Friday at Fountain Valley. Last year, Fountain Valley made the Final Four of the state tournament. 

The game should be a good early-season barometer of where a young but talented Steamboat team stands. 

"They were a Final Four team," Ruff said. "We expect they are going to be a very tough team."

— To reach Luke Graham, call 970-871-4229 or email

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