Steamboat boys up and down, but finish 3rd | SteamboatToday.com
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Steamboat boys up and down, but finish 3rd

Ethan Riniker tries to reach around Eagle Valley's Jesse Loera to poke the ball away Saturday. The Sailors went on to win the game, 57-46.
Joel Reichenberger

Steamboat Shoot-Out Day 3 results

Girls

7th-place — Pueblo Centennial 63, Steamboat 21

5th place — Northridge 48, Prairie View 33

3rd place — Moffat County 39, Discovery Canyon 32

1st place — Montrose 41, Eagle Valley 38

Boys

7th place — Montrose 68, Moffat County 36

5th place — Roosevelt 72, Pueblo Centennial 62

3rd place — Steamboat 57, Eagle Valley 45

1st place — Northridge 54, Colorado Academy 50

— An inconsistent game Saturday kept things exciting as the Steamboat Springs High School boys basketball team held off Eagle Valley to place third in the Steamboat Shoot-Out basketball tournament.

Steamboat Shoot-Out Day 3 results

Girls

7th-place — Pueblo Centennial 63, Steamboat 21

5th place — Northridge 48, Prairie View 33

3rd place — Moffat County 39, Discovery Canyon 32

1st place — Montrose 41, Eagle Valley 38

Boys

7th place — Montrose 68, Moffat County 36

5th place — Roosevelt 72, Pueblo Centennial 62

3rd place — Steamboat 57, Eagle Valley 45

1st place — Northridge 54, Colorado Academy 50

Steamboat won 57-45 in what was the second consecutive game with serious ups and downs for the Sailors.

After a 2-1 stint in the Shoot-Out, one thing was clear, however: When the Sailors are on, they’re awfully good.

“We made some adjustments, and every adjustment we made, the boys have done a really good job of executing,” coach Michael Vandahl said. “They’re good listeners, smart kids, and you have to commend them for that.”

Saturday, “on” was the first quarter, in which Steamboat build a fat lead.

Things were already going well — the team was up 6-0 — before senior Jacob Taulman caught fire. He drained 3-pointers from the corner on back-to-back possessions, then sank a short turnaround jumper from the block on the next, pushing the lead to 14-0.

Eagle Valley finally scored with 3 minutes, 5 seconds remaining in the first, but the lead blew as big as 18-2 after brothers Ethan Riniker and Mac Riniker put away layups on consecutive fast-break possessions.

“We were moving the ball well as a team,” said Taulman, who scored 10 of his 12 points in the first quarter. “It’s easy to shoot an open shot.”

Steamboat had some “off” Saturday, as well.

That “off” mode might have cost the team a chance to play for the Shoot-Out championship in a loss Friday night against Colorado Academy.

There, the Mustangs were able to pull away in the middle part of the game before the Sailors rode a furious fourth-quarter comeback, thanks an effective full-court press.

Steamboat, down by 15 through much of the third quarter, pulled within one point in the fourth before losing 52-49.

Saturday, Steamboat again wilted through the middle of the game. Eagle Valley deployed a vicious half-court trap defense, which, at times, froze the Sailors.

Up 18-2 early, Steamboat led just 24-17 at half. It was within six points in the fourth quarter, 51-45.

Ethan Riniker helped spur one last surge, however. He had a big block on defense, then sank a pair of free throws to push the lead back to double digits.

He finished with 22 points to lead his team. Eagle Valley’s Jesse Loera led all scorers with 24.

Steamboat also got a wildly impressive defensive performance from McKenyon King, who alone drew up six charging calls. He drew five more Friday against Colorado Academy.

Despite the down moments, Steamboat, 3-2, still came away from the tournament grinning, especially after picking up the win against Eagle Valley, a Western Slope League foe.

“Our goal for this game was to send a message to the league that we’ll be a threat, and we did that,” Taulman said. “We improved this weekend, and that’s all we can ask for.”

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253, email jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @JReich9


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