Demon boys take down Bears, eye league title
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” Glenwood Springs boys basketball coach Greg Hire doesn’t break out his suit very often. Pretty much only on Senior Night.
After his Demons’ 62-39 win over neighboring rival Rifle on Tuesday, he might want to consider sporting it more often.
“Senior Night is when I usually wear a suit. It’s the one night I look respectable,” Hire joked after watching his Demons improve to 16-6 overall and 12-1 in the 4A Western Slope League behind 24 points from senior guard Kevin Screen.
Rifle held its own early, fighting to a lead of 11-8 midway through the first quarter. But Glenwood closed the quarter with a 9-2 run to go up 17-13 by stanza’s end.
The Demons added to the lead in the second quarter, outscoring the Bears 12-2 in front of a rowdy home crowd to take a 29-15 advantage into the break.
Rifle cut the lead to as few as 11 points in the second half, but never managed a serious threat.
Still, the game was much closer than the teams’ previous meeting, which went to Glenwood by a count of 81-49 in Rifle back on Jan. 27.
“Rifle and Glenwood is always a battle,” Hire said. “The kids come out and play so hard every time. It’s always a fun game, always a battle.”
Patrick Hailey scored 10 points and hauled in seven rebounds for the Demons. Russell Collins added seven points, all in the fourth quarter, and Jordan Ciani scored six points and had seven boards.
“We definitely knew (Glenwood)’s playing really well right now,” Rifle head coach Chris Lowther said. “They shoot the ball really well. We wanted to try to shut down their transition game. They had a ton of transition 3s against us last game.”
Lowther’s Bears kept 3-pointers from falling en masse, but the Demons had just had too many weapons.
Jacob Massey led Rifle (6-15, 3-10) with 16 points. Eric Laudick chipped in with nine and Tyler Rust had seven.
In a game of major interest to the Glenwood Springs faithful, Moffat County’s Thomas Noble drained a deep 3-pointer in the waning moments to help the Bulldogs to a 41-38 win over visiting Steamboat Springs on Tuesday.
The Sailors’ loss puts the Demons in sole possession of first place. Steamboat is now 14-7 overall and 11-2 in 4A WSL play. The Sailors had a 41-game league win streak going before Glenwood beat them 61-51 on Saturday.
Although he hadn’t heard anything of the outcome from Craig, a Bulldog win is exactly what Demon senior Kevin Screen hoped for after his team beat Rifle on Tuesday.
“Hopefully Moffat can beat ’em and we can take league,” he said.
He got his wish. Now if the Demons defeat Delta on Friday, they’ll be the outright league champs.
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