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Steamboat girls hit the road

Sailors to take on Panthers

Christine Metz

— With only one starter from last year’s rotation gone, the Rangely High School girls basketball team will look very familiar to Steamboat Springs when the teams meet Saturday on the Panthers’ home court.

All of this year’s rotating seven players saw varsity time on a team last year that posted a 7-14 record. And only guard Candice Brown, who was lost to graduation, will be absent from this year’s starting five.

Size will be the biggest strength for the Panthers, Rangely coach Kurt Douglas said. Adding to that size will be senior forwards Sara Peacock (5-foot-10), Casi Wright (5-foot-9) and 6-foot center Arianne Morrison, all of whom started in last year’s matchup against the Sailors.

“Most teams have trouble matching up with us size-wise,” Douglas said. “Our weakness is that we’re not exceptionally quick. We are just not real consistent just yet.”

After coming from behind to win 39-35 in last year’s game, the Sailors are expecting to see a Panthers team that has a slow and deliberate offense and makes its opponents play a lot of defense, Steamboat coach Bruce Alston said.

“They are a very, very well-coached team,” Alston said. “I know they’ll be a tough opponent.”

The 3A Panthers are 2-1, which includes a 45-40 win over Rifle. Peacock is the Panthers’ leading scorer, averaging 15.5 points per game. Wright follows at 13.5 points per game.

On the defensive end, junior Angie Plummer leads the team in rebounds, totaling 6.5 per game. Morrison and Sammi Peacock follow with an average of 4.5 rebounds per game.

Coming off Tuesday’s 57-40 loss to Grand Junction Central, Steamboat hopes to rebound Saturday and return to the winning side of things, Alston said. In order to do that, he said, the Sailors will need to work on avoiding turnovers, make better shot selections and improve on rebounding.

“The attitude is really positive. We know what we did wrong and know what we need to work on,” Alston said.

One of the major concerns Douglas has with the Sailors is their team speed, he said.

Alston, meanwhile, said the Sailors deep bench may be key on Saturday.


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