Demons come up short in opener
Post Independent Staff
GRAND JUNCTION ” Drama has become part of the Glenwood Springs girls basketball team’s game plan. Or, at least it seems like it.
For the second straight game, the Demons needed to make a big shot in the fourth quarter to get into overtime. In Thursday’s Class 4A District 6 contest, however, Glenwood came up a foot short.
The No. 5-seed Montezuma-Cortez Panthers survived a last-second scare when Glenwood’s Amber Sutherland’s three-point attempt hit the front iron with 4.3 seconds left in a 48-45 nail-biter.
But, give the scrappy Demons credit.
Sutherland, who led Glenwood with 17 points, and the Demons rallied back from five points down early in the second quarter to a 27-19 halftime lead with a 12-0 scoring run to end the first half.
The Demons’ lead shrank as the second half progressed and Glenwood’s aggressive play began taking its toll.
Glenwood had put Cortez in the bonus by going over the team foul limit earlier in the period. Back-to-back personals by Yuri Salvidrez and Nikita Daniely allowed Cortez to hit four straight free throws to take a 42-41 lead.
Keegan Nadon responded with a field goal on the opposite end to go back up by one. It was the last time Glenwood would lead.
Cortez’s Brittany Whiteman, who hit a huge three-pointer earlier in the quarter, came up big again. The junior threw in a layup to gain their second lead in as many possessions. Cortez added to its 44-43 lead by going 3-for-4 from the free throw line.
In the two-plus minutes after Nadon’s field goal the Demons failed to score.
Salvidrez, who finished with 11 points, broke the drought with a bucket after an interception with 59 seconds remaining. Cortez’s Sasha Yarbrough gave the Panthers a 48-45 lead on a Nikita Daniely foul with 26 seconds to go.
Free throws were the difference. In the last 3:39 of the game, as Cortez was 8-of-12 (12-of-22 in the game).
The loss drops the Demons into an elimination bracket game with Battle Mountain at 3 p.m. today at Palisade High School.
Rifle 50, Battle Mountain 41
PALISADE ” No. 1-seed Rifle overcame a rash of poor shooting and turnovers in the first quarter to record a 50-41 win over the No. 8-seed Battle Mountain Huskies to advance to tonight’s semifinals against Montezuma-Cortez.
Surprised by the Huskies’ opening full-court press, Rifle was 0-for-5 shooting and down 9-1 until forward Renee Laudick scored the Bears’ first field goal of the game with 2 minutes, 54 seconds left in the first period.
Rifle scored six of the quarter’s remaining eight points to pull within two points of the Huskies at the end of the period.
Senior Krista Wagstrom gave the Bears the lead for good by making a three-point play after a Battle Mountain personal foul early in the second quarter.
Rifle pulled out to a 26-16 lead at intermission and led by as many as 23 points in the contest before coach Rick Schmitz pulled his starters from the game with two minutes left in the third.
Wagstrom finished with 12 points to lead all scorers, Julie McWilliams finished with eight points and 11 rebounds. Guard Sara Lybarger paced Battle Mountain with nine points.
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