Steamboat boys basketball draw 2-time champs
Steamboat basketball squad to play Sierra on Friday
Steamboat Springs — The details are sketchy to Steamboat Springs High School boys basketball coach Luke DeWolfe at this point, but perhaps the details aren’t all that important.
His Sailors will travel Friday to play Sierra. No matter what the team’s record, its strengths or weaknesses this year, that matchup will make for one heck of a hurdle as the squad has won the last two Class 4A boys state championships.
“We need to do our best to make sure it’s not three,” DeWolfe said.
“They’re a perennial powerhouse and are strong year in and year out.”
Sierra has dominated 4A boys hoops in recent years and late this season seems to be getting on course to do so again. The squad enters Friday’s game as the 32-team tournament’s No. 8 seed, sporting a 16-7 record.
It’s on a nine-game winning streak, however, a run that featured a long string of blowouts and a signature victory against the No. 2 team in the state, Lewis-Palmer.
The team graduated many of the stars that carried it in the last two seasons, but returns plenty of firepower, including junior Wesley Gordon, whose 22.6 points per game rank him among the best players in the state.
Of course, Steamboat’s been playing some good basketball of its own.
The Sailors finished off their regular season a 46-27 dismantling of rival Moffat County. That was their eighth win in a row and their 10th in the last 11.
What appeared to have been a .500 team before the Winter Break has thrived in 2011.
“We’re playing our best basketball right now,” DeWolfe said. “Every game for the last eight we’ve gotten better and our kids understand this is the time of year you need to put together your best games.
“There’s no reason we can’t go down and compete with this team.”
Even with a win, things won’t get easier for Steamboat, at 15-7 the No. 25 seed in the tournament. Windsor, 19-4, will battle Pueblo Central, 13-10, also at Sierra on the other side of the Sailors quad. The team that emerges from those four will likely face top-seeded Broomfield.
“We’ll make a run and see what happens,” DeWolfe said. “This time of year, you just throw the ball up and see what happens.”
— To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253 or e-mail jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com
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