High School sports preview, Sept. 22 to Sept. 24
Steamboat Springs — 1 p.m. Saturday Steamboat (5-6) vs. Eagle Valley (7-2)
The Sailors have been decidedly up and down early this season. It’ll take one of their season-best “ups” if they’re to knock off Eagle Valley on Saturday. The Devils are currently 3-0 in the Western Slope and control their own destiny.
This season so far has been about a progression for the Sailors. They’ve made mistakes one week and been able to show marked improvement the next. They’re coming off a high, too, a three-set victory against a very solid Glenwood Springs squad.
A team like Eagle Valley will likely expose some more weaknesses. If Steamboat’s going to pull off the upset, it needs to find a way to make those adjustments between points instead of between matches.
6 p.m. Thursday Steamboat (6-2) vs. Summit (3-2)
The Sailors played a huge game Tuesday night, a 3-0 loss at home to rival Battle Mountain. They don’t get any time to catch their breath after that one, either. Summit is one of four teams with just one league loss so far and has shown this season and in previous seasons that it is plenty capable of running through the league.
Set pieces particularly hurt Steamboat on Tuesday. The Sailors gave up two goals on corner kicks. They’ll need to tighten up there if they’re to hang in the Western Slope race.
1 p.m. Saturday Hayden (1-2) at Miami Yoder (0-3)
The Tigers hit a decided lull in their season last weekend when they were shut out on the road at South Park.
It wasn’t so much that Hayden couldn’t move the ball, though it didn’t exactly move it far or fast. Coach Ryan Wilkie said it was converting on crucial downs that sank his team’s offensive effort. Four trips to the red zone, for instance, all ended on failed fourth-down attempts.
Some of those are fixable problems, and Miami Yoder could offer the chance to make those adjustments.
The winless Buffaloes haven’t been competitive in a game yet this season and also haven’t lost to a team with a winning record. They’ve been about as one dimensional as possible on offense, throwing the ball just four times, and have been led on the ground by senior quarterback Wyatt Rodriguez, who’s averaged nearly 5 yards a carry, and sophomore tailback Jesus Quintana, who’s scored half the team’s touchdowns.
4:30 p.m. Friday Hayden (1-5) at Caprock Academy (0-10)
1 p.m. Saturday Hayden vs. De Beque (3-5)
The Tigers didn’t generate much momentum with their first win of the season but have a great opportunity to rack up multiple victories this weekend. Caprock Academy hasn’t picked up a victory this season and has won just four of its 34 sets.
De Beque, too, is a team the Tigers can challenge, though it will indeed be a bigger challenge.
It’s an important weekend for Hayden because of all that opportunity. A couple of wins could make a huge difference for a young team like the Tigers.
Friday and Saturday Soroco (5-3) at Simla tournament
The Rams showed big-time resolve Tuesday in a dramatic come-from-behind victory at home against North Park. Now, they’ll have the opportunity to build on that with a series of games Friday and Saturday at a tournament at Simla High School. Soroco will face at least Wray and Hoehne at the event, neither of which will be easy opponents. Both teams have just one loss so far this season.
It’s a non-league event, of course, meaning it’s a great chance for the Rams to play carefree, knowing the results will only mean so much to their season. The squad dives back into league action next week with a pair of home matches.
Soroco cross country
10 a.m. Saturday Soroco at Fruita Monument
The Rams have two of the best runners in the state, and they’ve shown it week after week. Ben Kelly won his last race by a huge margin and has established himself as a contender to win any race he’s entered in, any day. He’s been so good, in fact, that it’s easy to overlook Chloe Veilleux, who’s also having an excellent season.
The Rams will try to add to it Saturday at Fruita Monument.
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STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Xcel Energy announced Wednesday morning that it’s committed to avoiding any employee layoffs when closing its coal-fired power plants, including the two stations in Hayden set to retire later this decade.