Steamboat boys bounce back for 3rd-place victory at Shoot-Out |

Steamboat boys bounce back for 3rd-place victory at Shoot-Out

Steamboat's Garrett Bye sets to go up to lay the ball in Saturday as the Sailors beat Montrose, 42-34, in the Steamboat Springs Shoot-Out.

— The Steamboat Springs High School boys basketball team had hoped to gain valuable experience in its Friday clash with highly rated D'Evelyn.

It got stomped in that game, but the Sailors said the lessons they learned already were paying off just one day later as the squad surged late to beat Montrose, 42-34, in the consolation game of the Steamboat Springs Shoot-Out.

The win put Steamboat in third at the tournament.

"That was a wake-up call," sophomore point guard Brody King said. "We really came into this game ready to play."

The main bump came in dealing with pressure defense. There aren't many teams in the state capable of dialing it up the way D'Evelyn can, so Saturday's pressure from Montrose felt like a vacation by comparison.

Steamboat handled it much more effectively, cutting deep into its turnovers. That made a huge difference.

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"That helped us in terms of learning what it takes to be successful," Steamboat coach Luke DeWolfe said. "Today, it was sticking to our defensive principle and our guys executing on the court."

The Sailors clung to small leads through most of the game, by two points after one quarter and, thanks to a slew of buckets from sophomores, by eight points at one point in the second quarter.

Sophomore and starting point guard Brodie King hit one 3-point shot in that run, and sophomore center Garrett Bye added a bucket, as well. Sophomore guard Mitch McCannon, coming off the bench, bracketed King's trey with a basket and a 3-pointer of his own, helping open up the lead.

"We've definitely improved a lot, and we're getting a lot of guys to play really well on the bench," King said. "We have a deep bench, and that's a big help."

King hit another 3-point shot in the fourth quarter to give his team a crucial 33-30 lead late. The Sailors were sharp on their free throws afterward, allowing for the seemingly comfortable win.

"Some things are becoming more and more clear as we go through this," DeWolfe said. "Some individuals are really stepping up."

King led the team with 13 points. Carter Kounovsky added 11, and Bye had seven.

Steamboat, 4-1, will be back on the court Friday against Rifle.

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253 or email