Hot start, hot finish carry SSHS boys lacrosse past Evergreen | SteamboatToday.com

Hot start, hot finish carry SSHS boys lacrosse past Evergreen

Austin Colbert

— Forty-eight minutes is a long time for any teenager to remain focused on a single objective, and it's a problem that has plagued the Steamboat Springs High School boys' lacrosse team this season.

For whatever reason, the third quarter has been a downer for the Sailors, and even they don't fully know why.

"They've been working hard, and they are starting to get a feel of what they need to do from the start of the game," SSHS coach Jay Lattimore said. "Luckily, a good start helps those down times, and we were able to keep a couple goal cushion through it. It's kind of been a trend for us right now. We are continuing to try to get out of the habit."

Though the third quarter again presented a struggle for Steamboat on Friday against visiting Evergreen at Gardner Field, it was the only negative in an otherwise-impressive 19-10 win against the Cougars.

Scoring barrages that came early and late in the game made the difference, giving the Sailors two consecutive wins after a 1-2 start to the season. The momentum is important, with a key game at Grand Junction coming Saturday.

"This year, we've had some troubles in the third quarter, coming out of halftime. We definitely saw that happen in this game," SSHS senior Drew Williamson said. "But, I think, overall, what we showed in that first half is what we need to bring tomorrow into Grand Junction."

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The Sailors came out hot against Evergreen (0-3). A goal by junior Colin Musselman and two by sophomore Davis Petersen led to a 3-0 advantage less than five minutes into the first quarter. Steamboat rode that hot start into the locker room to lead 12-5 at halftime.

It was nearly six minutes into the third quarter before either team again found net — a goal by Petersen that made it 13-5. Evergreen put together a strong rally from there, a 5-1 run that straddled the quarters, making it a four-goal game with a little more than five minutes to play.

"We get ahead, and we seem to die out a little bit," Williamson said. "But, I think we were able to pull it together a little bit toward the end."

Williamson ended the Cougar run with a goal around the five-minute mark, and the Sailors dropped the hammer from there. Senior Jackson Draper made it 16-10, and Petersen put in the final three goals for the runaway victory.

Petersen led the Sailors with seven goals, followed by four each from Williamson and Draper. Seniors Jordan Gorr, Chris Kaminski and Joe Borgerding all added goals, as well.

Now 3-2, Steamboat heads to Grand Junction (2-1) for an 11 a.m. game Saturday. The teams split two games last season, the Tigers winning a key late-season battle that gave them the edge for third place in the final league standings.

"We are starting to get into the groove," Williamson said. "Those first two losses don't necessarily represent who we are, as a team. Our 3-2 record definitely doesn't represent how good we are right now. I think we can expect big things tomorrow and as we continue our season."

To reach Austin Colbert, call 970-871-4204, email acolbert@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Austin_Colbert