Sailors ready to face off

Lewis-Palmer High School may have an enrollment more than double that of Steamboat Springs High School, but Rangers soccer coach Reid Wiecks said that means nothing at playoff time.

"The last time we played Steamboat they beat us, four or five years ago," Wiecks said. "(Coach) Jim (Dudley) had the girls well prepared, and they took advantage of our weaknesses. We couldn't take advantage of theirs. Steamboat has good athletes and good coaches. I know they will be prepared. I know it will be a great game."

Game time between the Lewis-Palmer girls soccer team and Steamboat is 10 a.m. Saturday in Monument. Next week, the winner of Saturday's game will face Mullen; Mullen defeated Thomas Jefferson, 7-0, on Wednesday.

Steamboat and Lewis-Palmer scrimmaged during the preseason, though the Sailors weren't at full strength. The two teams have one common opponent this season in Littleton, which defeated both the Sailors and Rangers.

Wiecks expects Steamboat to be a different team than the one Lewis-Palmer saw in March. Sailors coach Rob Bohlmann, who replaced Dudley three seasons ago, believes the same of the Rangers.

"They are traditionally first, second or third in the Colorado Springs league, which is traditionally one of the top leagues in the state," Bohlmann said. "'Powerhouse' may be a little zealous, but they are certainly a very rich soccer school."

This season, Steamboat (14-1-1 overall) rolled through the Western Slope League with an undefeated mark to win the championship. Lewis-Palmer (11-4-1) finished behind Liberty in the Colorado Springs Metro League.

During the regular season, the Rangers were tough to beat on defense, allowing just seven goals, only two of which came in league play. The Sailors are coming off one of their better performances of the season in a 2-1 win against Longmont, as well.

Steamboat is the No. 11 seed coming in, while host Lewis-Palmer is the No. 6 seed.

Wiecks and Bohlmann said Saturday's game should have the same look on both sides of the ball, based on the early season scrimmage.

"Overall, our level of play versus their level of play is very competitive, or was at that time," Bohlmann said. "I'm sure both teams have changed a bit, but they were pretty similar styles."

Rangers players to watch include top scorers Laine Hubbard and Mackie Mutz. Kelly Labor, Lindsay Ellis and Jessica Dover have been the Sailors' primary goal scorers as of late and through most of the season.

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