Basalt girls ready for state "Great 8"
It’s kind of like “Hoosiers” ” the small, rural team that has defeated all odds to face a loaded powerhouse, in a massive gym far from home, with the state title on the line.
Actually, it’s not like that at all ” except for the massive gym and state title part.
After all, making it to the “Great Eight” of the girls class 3A high school state championship has become old habit for the Basalt Lady Longhorns ” this is their third appearance in as many years.
Tonight they face top seeded Kent Denver in Colorado State University’s Moby Arena, with hopes of staying alive and advancing to the Final Four.
From here on out, all games will be held in Moby Arena.
Led by seniors Lauren Redfern and Brittany Pollock, and junior guard Deanna Spracher, the girls dominated again this year, going 18-4 in the regular season and taking home their fourth straight league title.
The 8th seeded Longhorns downed 25th ranked La Junta in the opening round of the state tournament 60-46, and 9th ranked Eaton 57-45 in the Sweet 16, to advance to the quarterfinals.
As long as Redfern stays out of foul trouble, the Longhorns should hold up against Kent Christian.
After she fouled out against Eaton last weekend, the Reds made a run at the Longhorns, erasing a 20-point, fourth quarter lead to pull within five.
“She just carries everybody else,” Basalt coach Terry Kappeli said of Redfern after the Eaton game. “She adds a lot of confidence [to the team].”
Kent Denver, now 23-1, beat bottom seeded Gunnison 63-44 in the first round, and Erie 51-45, to get to their quarterfinal showdown with Basalt.
Last week after the Eaton victory, Kappeli said he would prepare his team to be respectable in states. If Redfern and Spracher combine for 35 points, like they did against Eaton, that shouldn’t be a problem.
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After losing the 3A Western Slope League race in a tough, five-set loss to Basalt on April 15, the Coal Ridge High volleyball team finds its playoff fate partly out of its own hands.