District basketball: Demons ‘refocused and hungry’ in victory
GRAND JUNCTION — As the teams came off the floor from pregame warmups in the 4A boys Western Slope League district third-place game, Glenwood Springs’ coach Cory Hitchcock told his team, “Put a smile on your faces, it’s basketball.” The Demons, who came into the tourney as the No. 1 seed, but lost to Durango on Friday night, seemed like they were back to having fun in dispatching Palisade, 56-40, Saturday at Brownson Arena.
Cameron Horning scored seven as the Demons (19-4) took a 12-8 first quarter lead, then Brian Burbidge, scoreless in the semifinal game, broke loose for 11 points, giving Glenwood a 31-18 halftime lead.
After a 3-pointer by Matt Osier put Glenwood up by 16 three minutes into the second half, the Demons went the next six minutes without a basket, but were 12-of-12 from the free throw line, led by eight straight foul shots from Evrett Marr.
Leading 40-28 going into the final quarter, Glenwood made 10-of-11 from the stripe in that frame to win the third-place trophy and await state-playoff seeding from the Colorado High School Activities Association today.
“We got refocused and hungry and got back to Glenwood basketball, tough-nosed defense, go get the boards, and don’t settle for jumpers,” Hitchcock said after the Demons’ third win over Palisade — and second at Brownson Arena — this season.
Burbidge led the Demons with 14 points and eight rebounds. Marr tallied 10 and Zack Peterson and Horning each scored nine. Marques Combs led the Bulldogs (10-13) with nine.
MONTROSE 36, RIFLE 26
GRAND JUNCTION — Facing No. 1 Montrose in the third-place game, the No. 6-seeded Bears were forced to shoot primarily from the outside. They made a game of it, however, before falling to the Indians.
With the freshman duo of Jessie Pressler and Elly Walters sinking 6-of-11 treys, Rifle (13-10), after falling behind 10-0 midway through the first quarter, pulled within four points with four minutes to go in the third quarter.
Pressler led all scorers with 12 points, Walters adding 11. Sam Hinkle, Rifle’s 6-1 sophomore, was smothered inside by a series of 6-foot Montrose defenders and missed six 3-pointers, and was the only other Bear to score, with 3 points and had 10 rebounds.
The Bears’ opening round upset of third-seeded Glenwood Springs qualified them for the state playoffs.
They will await today’s announcement of the 32-team bracket by CHSAA. The Demons, with a 16-5, record hope to get an at-large bid.
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