Glenwood takes two from Battle Mountain
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – No one associated with the Glenwood Springs boys basketball program makes any bones about it. The Demons are a team of outside shooters.
“We always say, ‘When in doubt, air it out,'” Glenwood coach Greg Hire joked.
Against visiting Battle Mountain on Friday, airing it out wasn’t working out so well for the Demons. So they tried attacking the basket.
Producing frequent trips to the foul line and layups – both from penetrating guards and via dish-offs to big man Nick Ciani – the strategy worked.
Rallying from an 11-point third-quarter deficit, Glenwood remained perfect in the 4A Western Slope League with a 62-54 win over the upstart Huskies.
“I told the kids to start attacking the hoop and not settle for outside jumpers because we were in the bonus,” Hire said. “[The outside shots] really hadn’t been working. We shot miserably the first three quarters.”
After closing the third quarter with a 5-0 run to pull within six at 38-32, Hire’s Demons put up 30 points in the fourth.
The teams swapped leads four times in the final frame before Glenwood gained the upper hand. The Demons closed out the game with six straight free throws – four from Kelbey Artaz and a pair from Kevin Flohr – in the final 19.5 seconds.
“We weren’t shooting well in the first three quarters,” said Glenwood senior Danny Weller, whose Demons shot just 32 percent from the floor (20-of-63) for the game. “We were just off, so we started attacking.”
Despite seeing the game sway out of reach late, Battle Mountain coach Tommy Padilla couldn’t have been prouder of his Huskies.
“My kids battled to the end,” he said. “You know, a couple calls went against us that could go either way. It seems they went against us at the wrong time. Give hats off to Glenwood. They played tough. They’re a good team and showed why they’re No. 1 in the league.”
Despite shooting at just a 5-for-21 clip from the floor, Kevin Flohr led the Demons (14-5 overall, 10-0 in the 4A WSL) with 20 points. He drilled a pair of key 3-pointers in the fourth after misfiring on his previous five tries from beyond the arc.
Ciani finished with 15 points and 12 rebounds. Weller had eight points, two coming off an acrobatic layup that fell with 27 seconds remaining and gave Glenwood a 56-52 lead.
Robert Weiss led a balanced Battle Mountain score sheet with 11 points. Parker Lathrop and Cody Hervert each scored 10 and Edward Banegas and Miguel Copas chipped in with eight apiece. Copas also pulled down eight rebounds.
“I’ll tell you what, my kids battled and battled and battled,” said Padilla, whose Huskies dropped to 8-8 overall and to 3-6 in league. “People should recognize that we are a good team. We’re not the old Battle Mountain anymore.”
Glenwood certainly took notice.
“They’ve grown as a team,” Hire said of his squad’s Friday foe. “Tommy’s doing a great job with them. They’re a ton better than what they were.”
Scoring 24 of the game’s first 26 points and piling it on from there, Glenwood’s girls rolled to a 76-31 win over Battle Mountain on Friday.
Kenzie Kuhn scored 21 points and dished out nine assists to lead the Demons (10-8, 6-4). Connor Adams added 14 points, Lexie Warkentin 12 and McKenzie Nelson-Buehler 10
Gaby Munguia led Battle Mountain (0-18, 0-9) with 12 points. Kenia Olivas netted seven.
“We just didn’t play much defense at all,” Huskies coach Andrew Schmid said. “Glenwood came out in the first quarter and put it on us. We just weren’t ready to play defense.”
Once up by a healthy margin, Glenwood tried to fine-tune its game for the forthcoming stretch run. The Demons need a strong finish to secure a trip to the 4A state playoffs.
“We tried to work on our defense, our 1-3-1 [zone],” Kuhn said. “We always do that in practice. We really used the game to work on our defense and run offenses that we don’t get a chance to [in other games].”
Next up for Glenwood is a home date with Moffat County next Friday. Battle Mountain hosts Rifle today.
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