Sailors attempt to right the ship |

Sailors attempt to right the ship

Steamboat football doesn't want Friday loss to impact postseason play

Steamboat Springs senior Eric Bonner looks to tackle Glenwood Springs sophomore Luke Jacob on Friday night at Gardner Field.

— Page seven of the Colorado High School Activities Association’s 2008 Football Bulletin explains the details of the mercy rule.

It stipulates that a running clock be used in the second half when one team is leading another by 40 points.

It’s a rule the Steamboat Springs High School football team has become plenty familiar with in the past couple of years, as the Sailors have used a high-powered offense to bully weaker teams and run many a Friday night clock ragged.

They got a taste of the other side of the game Friday, playing at home against Glenwood Springs.

Everything seemed to go right for the Demons while every direction Steamboat turned was a dead end. A 40-0 halftime lead for Glenwood turned into one of the worst defeats in recent memory for the Sailors.

“I have no question in my mind that team was the best in the state,” Steamboat’s junior quarterback, Austin Hinder, said.

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Standing on the sideline while the final minutes ticked away Friday, he said he realized how important it will be for his team to forget nearly everything that happened against the Demons.

Forget the dropped passes and the missed tackles. Forget the whiffs on the blocks and the drive-killing penalties. But don’t forget, he said, how beautiful football can look when someone does it perfectly.

“We just have to have really short memories, and we need to focus on making everything perfect,” Hinder said. “We need to focus on making it perfect like they did against us. That’s what we need to do in our playoff game.”

It’s a message the Sailors will have to swallow fast. The loss marked their last game of the season. They already had qualified for the playoffs, and their minds already had turned to that challenge as they stripped off their pads Friday night.

Glenwood Springs won the league and capped off an undefeated season. It also ensured a home playoff game. Steamboat, meanwhile, slipped to third in the Western Slope League and will have to travel for the first round of the postseason, which begins next Saturday.

Steamboat’s opponent will not be known until today’s tournament seeding meeting.

“That wasn’t the way you want to go into the playoffs,” Steamboat coach Aaron Finch said. “What we told our seniors was ‘Don’t let this be the beginning of the end of the memory of your high school experience.’ We are 8-2. We are a playoff team for the fourth year in a row. We had a bad night, but we’re still a very good football team.”

Glenwood broke off big play after big play and smashed into the end zone with 1 minute, 13 seconds remaining in the second quarter to take a 40-0 lead. It was enough that in the second half, the clock stopped only between the third and fourth quarters, and for one Steamboat timeout.

It was brutal. It was ugly. And, Hinder said, it may be the seed for a victory Saturday in what he termed the most important game of the season.

“You come out and play the best in the state and it shows you where you need to be,” he said. “It showed us how much better we need to get.”

– To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 871-4253 or e-mail

Season statistics

Steamboat Opponent

118 First Downs 128

305-1,694 Rushes-Yards 392-1,908

80-145-9 Comp-Att-Int 55-158-11

1,390 Yards Passing 731

2,935 Total Yards 2,206

23-33 Punts-Avg. 31-32

31-6 Fumbles-lost 27-5

70-569 Penalties-Yards 57-443


Steamboat 118-113-66-48-345

Opponent 56-60-42-50-208



S – Hinder 87-567, 9 TD; Fraser Egan 104-595, 11 TD; Joe Dover 64-513, 8 TD; Charles Wood 5-26, 1 TD; Dustin Siegel 14-47; Cody Harris 1-8; Jasper Gantick 1-(-19); Eric Bonner 3-15, 1 TD; Michael Savory 2-(-10); Dylan Pivarnik 2-7, 1 TD; Alex Wood 7-42; Grant McCannon 2-(-17); Garrett Pugh 11-30.


S – Hinder 75-136-7, 1,356 yards, 10 TD; Alex Wood 1-2-0, 22 yards, 1 TD; McCannon 1-2-0, 5 yards; Bonner 1-1-0, 2 yards; Savory 1-3-1, minus-4 yards; Gantick 1-1-0, 14 yards, 1 TD.


S – Alex Wood 33-667, 5 TD; Cody Harris 13-327, 3 TD; Dover 16-228, 1 TD; Egan 2-13, 1 TD; Jack Verploeg 1-5; Nelson Brassell 3-29; Gantick 2-14; Charles Wood 1-3; Jack Spady 4-71, 1 TD; Pivarnik 1-11, 1 TD; Bonner 2-22; Siegiel 1-(-4).

League standings

Overall League

Glenwood Springs 10-0 8-0

Palisade 9-1 7-1

Steamboat Springs 8-2 6-2

Eagle Valley 4-6 4-4

Montezuma-Cortez 3-5 2-5

Moffat County 4-6 3-5

Delta 4-5 2-5

Rifle 3-7 2-6

Battle Mountain 0-10 0-8

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