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Boys rivalry takes center stage tonight

Kevin Flohr has been witness to plenty of Glenwood Springs versus Rifle boys prep basketball games, both as a player and as a spectator.

Tonight, however, will be his first experience in the rivalry from the perspective of a head coach.

But he doesn’t see it as being different from any other Class 4A Western Slope game.



“I’ve been around basketball for so long and been in the battles myself,” the Demon coach said. “It’s not life or death. The goal is to do the best you can and grow as a person from it. I’m sure both towns will have a lot of fun with it, and it’s supposed to be fun.”

Glenwood and the Bears are scheduled to tip off at 7:30 p.m. tonight in Chavez-Spencer Gym at Glenwood High School.



And, if last season was any indication, fans should get there early to get a good seat.

Last season the Bears swept the Demons en route to a perfect 12-0 league record. The game in Glenwood, however, was the tightest of the league slate for Rifle, as the Bears held off the Demons 44-42 in front of a packed gym.

“I definitely expect it to be similar to last year as far as the energy and atmosphere,” Rifle coach Chris Lowther said.

This season, both squads enter the game trying to get into the hunt for the league title. Glenwood and Rifle enter with identical 4-6 overall records, but Rifle has the edge in league games. The Bears are 2-1, while Glenwood sits at 1-2. Steamboat Springs leads the league with a 4-0 (9-2 overall) mark.

At this point last season, the Demons’ Sean Flohr was the league’s hot new player. Now the 6-foot-5-inch junior has firmly entrenched himself among the state’s elite class 4A players. The sniper has 37 treys this season and is the fourth-ranked scorer in Class 4A with an average of 22.7 points per game.

Along with Sean Flohr, Oscar Jurado and Michael Flohr also average double digits with just over 10 per game.

“I really like their perimeter game,” Lowther said of the Demons. “I think they are very solid shooters and do a nice job of spotting up and getting the shot off.”

Rifle lost center Ryan Shideler to graduation off last year’s squad, but still boasts an athletic crew that may find some room inside against the Demons’ inexperienced paint players.

Jim Owens, Aaron Jewell and Troy Weiss all average around 10 points per game. Jewell and Owens are part of a group of players that fans can expect to see rotating through the paint looking for inside points.

After tonight’s contest, both Glenwood and Rifle are off until next Friday when the Demons travel to Delta and Rifle hits the road to Palisade.


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