Steamboat boys soccer taking a next-level approach in 2022 |

Steamboat boys soccer taking a next-level approach in 2022

The Steamboat Springs High School boys soccer team clears a corner kick during a game against Eagle Valley at Gardner Field. Their 2022 regular season begins on Saturday, August 20 where they head to Evergreen High School for a 1 p.m. start.
Shelby Reardon/Steamboat Pilot & Today

While taking a step in the right direction last season, the Steamboat Springs boys soccer team was unable to make a deep run in the playoffs. This season, with their experience, energy and focus, the Sailors intend on bringing things to the next level. 

Head coach Rob Bohlmann believes the team picked up a tremendous amount of momentum last season and will carry that into this year as it looks to make even more noise than last year. 

“As we head into this year, our MO is ‘next level,’” Bohlmann said. “Where that’s gonna take us, we’ll see, but it’s all about growth and picking up momentum that we had from 2021.” 

Bohlmann said that additions to the roster over the last couple of seasons have constructed a team with a strong nucleus of seniors, as well as an amazing group of younger athletes.

The team has been able to keep its midfield intact from last year, as well as its goalkeeper, Charlie Welch. Bohlmann believes this will allow the team to stay true to its playing identity from last year and keep up with the attack-oriented style that the Sailors implemented and excelled with last season. 

“The focus has been trying to maximize every day of our preseason,” Bohlmann said. “It’s all about just trying to reach our ultimate performance as a group and as players. The energy has been terrific.”

Welch, a senior at Steamboat Mountain School, plays for the Steamboat boys soccer team and sees the team’s energy as higher than ever. 

Welch said he’s had a fantastic time getting back out on the field after the long offseason, and while he hopes to post great numbers on the field, he wants even more to be a great leader on the team. 

“My big focus for the past couple years has been being a presence on the field with my communication and style of play and just being there for the guys,” Welch said. 

Erik Sandvik, a junior on the Steamboat Springs boys soccer team, keeps the ball from Vail Mountain attackers during a 2021 game.
Shelby Reardon/Steamboat Pilot & Today

One thing Bohlmann and the other coaches implement at the start of every season is a baseline fitness test to see where everyone stands. This year, 100% of the athletes were able to meet or exceed the benchmark for fitness set by the coaches.

“We walked away from scrimmages last weekend feeling good about how we played there,” Bohlmann said. “It just comes down to, we have a lot of confidence just from the experiences we have had these past couple weeks.”

Welch has not forgotten the feeling after the first-round loss in the 4A playoffs last season and intends on helping his team any way he can to ensure a deeper run this year. 

His excitement level is through the roof to get the season going with the first game on Saturday, Aug. 20, at Evergreen.

“‘Next level’ is what I’ve heard being preached a lot,” Welch said. “Whether that is in our attitude, our style of play or how we conduct ourselves on the side of the field, the big thing so far has been, let’s be Mr. Octobers and continue to make a run like we did last year and make it a little further into the playoffs.”

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