STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — There weren’t any high fives, hugs or much jumping around.
Instead, the Moffat County High School girls varsity basketball team walked off the court Friday night focused.
Yes, MCHS wrapped up a share of the Western Slope League title with a 48-35 win at rival Steamboat Springs.
But judging from the reaction, the Bulldogs have other goals in mind. They expected a piece of the league championship, and want more.
“We knew we should win, but we weren’t excited because we played terrible,” said Bulldogs forward Annie Sadvar, who had a game high 18 points and 13 rebounds. “I’d love to go as far as we can (in the state playoffs). The Sweet 16 is the minimum. Round two to get out wouldn’t be OK. I want to go past the Sweet 16 definitely.”
The game started out like a classic slugfest with the two U.S. Highway 40 rivals.
MCHS led the entire first two quarters but could never hit its run, taking just a 22-18 lead into halftime.
The Sailors battled foul trouble all first half with two of its top players — Nikki Fry and Sydney Bauknecht — each picking up their third fouls midway through the second quarter.
Steamboat came out in the second half and immediately got a bucket from Bauknecht to cut the lead to 22-20.
Then the MCHS run came.
The Bulldogs finished the quarter on a 16-2 spurt, and at one point Steamboat went without a point for 5 minutes and 39 seconds. The Bulldogs led 38-22 going into the fourth quarter.
“Just a five-minute stretch,” Steamboat coach John Ameen said. “You take that back and the whole game is like the first half. I’m happy with the effort. From the time we played them before to the time we played them now, we’ve improved.”
The Bulldogs led by as much as 44-23 early in the fourth before Steamboat started to make a dent in the MCHS lead.
But it was too little, too late for the Sailors.
In addition to Sadvar, Makayla Camilletti added 10 points and Lisa Camilletti had nine points, all 3-pointers.
Fry and Eryn Rinck led Steamboat with eight points each.
Now each team must wait until Sunday when the Colorado High School Activities Association releases the 48-team Class 4A bracket.
With another league title, the Bulldogs should be in heavy contention for a first-round bye into the round of 32.
“Last year we went to the Sweet 16 and hopefully we make it further this year,” Bulldogs coach Matt Ray said. “It all depends on how we play from one night to the next.
“We come out here and we stumble early. But if we play the caliber of basketball we’re capable of, yeah, we can make the Elite 8.”
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