Steamboat soccer ready for playoffs |

Steamboat soccer ready for playoffs

Sailors host opener at 3:30 p.m. today against D'Evelyn

Senior Andrew White, center, moves the ball against defenders Tommy Lyon, left, and Charlie Von Thaden during the Steamboat Springs High School boys' soccer team's practice Monday night at Gardner Field. The Sailors will face D'Evelyn at 3:30 p.m. today at home.

— The D’Evelyn Jaguars hope to keep their high school soccer season rolling today. But to do so, they’ll have to defeat a Steamboat Springs High School Sailors squad ready for a home playoff game.

The Sailors are looking to put an end to D’Evelyn’s late-season roll when the teams square off at 3:30 p.m. today at Gardner Field.

“We are just hoping to keep the momentum going,” D’Evelyn coach Brian Lux said. “To tell the truth, the teams on the Western Slope are always kind of a mystery. But most of the teams we’ve played (from the Western Slope) are big, strong and physical. So I think that’s what we are expecting.”

Lux said his team got off to a slow start this season. Injuries, the flu and a few red cards kept several of D’Evelyn’s top players off the field, and as a result, the team opened with losses to Faith Christian (2-1), Centaurus (3-0), Wheat Ridge (3-1) and Denver Christian (3-2). The team also tied Ralston Valley (0-0) and Colorado Academy (0-0).

But the Jaguars won seven of their past nine games. The team’s only loss was a 1-0 contest against Golden on Oct. 15. D’Evelyn also tied Evergreen in a 1-1 contest Oct. 8 to finish the season at 7-5-3 overall and 6-3-1 in the Jefferson County League.

“Once we got all of our players on the field, things started to turn around,” Lux said. “I think we finished the season at a point where we had really hoped to start it.”

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Lux said the Jaguars tend to be a ball-control team, and that’s what he is expecting from Steamboat. He said making the most of the opportunities will determine the winner in today’s playoff game.

D’Evelyn has several players who can put the ball in the back of the net, including Bryce Slama (six goals and one assist) and Ian Whitlock (five goals and one assist). Lux said the team also relies on talented midfielders Matt Carrera and Reid Bervik. Carrera has two goals this season, and Bervik has three.

On the other side of the ball, the Sailors think their experience and tight battles in the Western Slope League this season have prepared them for the playoffs.

“I don’t really know that much about D’Evelyn,” coach Rob Bohlmann said Monday. “We are going to focus on our game and we will rely on the thing that brought us success this year – defending as a group.”

Sailors senior Andrew White said the team is excited to open the playoffs at home and that the team wants to finish the season strong.

“This has been a really good season,” White said. “We all feel like we’ve accomplished something by making the playoffs, and now we want to build on that.”

White feels like the Sailors will have an advantage at home today. He said it’s always hard to travel, and he says the team is comfortable on the home turf and with the home crowd.

If you go

What: 4A Colorado state soccer playoff game

Who: Steamboat Springs (8-0-4, 8-2-4) vs. D’Evelyn (6-3-1, 7-5-3)

Where: Gardner Field at Steamboat Springs High School

When: 3:30 p.m. today

Tickets: $5 adults, $4 for students and seniors (60 and older)