Fast-paced Cards bury Skiers |

Fast-paced Cards bury Skiers

Jon Mitchell
Grand Valley High School's Sam Parker (5) fights for a rebound with teammate Leon Hernandez (2) during the first half of Saturday's Class 3A Western Slope League game against Aspen on Saturday in Parachute. The Cardinals won the game
Jon Mitchell / Post Independent |

PARACHUTE — Grand Valley High School’s boys basketball team has plenty of memories of all the losses it’s taken at the hands of the Aspen Skiers in recent years. The Cardinals returned the favor on Saturday night.

Sam Parker finished with a game-high 30 points to lead four Grand Valley players in double figures, and Class 3A’s highest scoring team rolled to a 96-63 Western Slope League victory at The Nest.

“We’ve been waiting for this game for a long time,” said Parker, who leads the classification in scoring. “So we were going to make sure we came out full throttle since we were at home, and we were going to keep it up win or lose. This time, we came out on top.”

And them some.

Grand Valley (8-1 overall, 4-0 league), the eighth-ranked team in the Associated Press Class 3A media poll, had a legitimate chance to reach the century mark in scoring before the Cardinals emptied their bench with just under 2 minutes left to play. Also reaching double figures in scoring was Sam’s younger brother John (20 points), Gunner Rigsby (19) and Tanner Magee (12).

“Everybody talks about how well the Parker brothers can shoot,” first-year Aspen coach Rolf Schilman said. “But this is a team that can score bunches, and it’s not a two-man show out there. They’ve got lots of players who can hit the open shot, and we had a hard time defending them.”

The Skiers (5-3, 1-2) had plenty of players who scored, also. Evan Patzolt finished with a team-high 26 points to go with 10-point performances from Jack Rosenthal and Evan Geishart. But even with a 21-point third quarter, the Skiers still trailed 70-48 headed into the fourth.

“The kids really came out ready to play,” Grand Valley coach Scott Parker said. “Aspen has been beating us pretty good for a long time, so the kids were definitely focused and ready to play today.”

Grand Valley’s victory is the first for the Cardinals over the Skiers in three years, and the Cardinals made sure they were well on their way at the start.

The Skiers pulled within 17-13 at the beginning of the second quarter, but the Cardinals responded with an 11-3 run — allowing no Aspen field goals in the process — to go up 28-16 with 4 minutes, 37 seconds remaining before halftime. They pushed it to 47-27 by halftime, then used its long-range shooting and transition game to add to the lead even more as the game wore on.

“Really, it doesn’t matter to me how much we score,” Sam Parker said. “All I care about is that we win. That’s all that everyone here cared about today.”

Girls: Grand Valley 72, Aspen 15

PARACHUTE — Kyra Chenoweth finished with a game-high 28 points, and four of the Cardinals’ five scorers reached double figures in their victory against the Skiers.

Bailey Rowe and Jordan Scott added 12 points and Kylyn Rigsby chipped in 11 for Grand Valley (6-3, 3-1 league), who jumped to a 27-4 lead after one quarter and never looked back.

Mckenna Woodrow and Megan Hansen each finished with six points to pace the Skiers, who fell to 1-6 overall and 1-2 in league play.

The Skiers continue league play on Friday at Coal Ridge. The Cardinals will also continue league play on Friday when they host Basalt.

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