PREP ROUNDUP: Roaring Fork boys roll past Moffat County; Cardinals top Titans, Longhorns in district tournaments
Hosting the Moffat County Bulldogs Tuesday night in Carbondale in the quarterfinals of the 3A district tournament, the Roaring Fork Rams boys basketball team raced out to a big 14-4 lead midway through the first quarter and never looked back, securing a 70-36 win to advance to the semifinals of the district tournament.
The Rams scored 20, 24, 17 and 9 points per quarter, while holding the Bulldogs to 6 points in the first quarter and 5 points in the second quarter. Along with stellar defensive play, the Rams shared the ball well and three players scored in double figures on the night, led by senior Justin Thompson’s 23 points. Junior sixth-man Aidan Sloan added 16 points, while junior Joe Salinas added 12 points.
“Defensively, we were more fundamental than we’ve been most of the year,” Roaring Fork Head Coach Larry Williams said following the win. “I really like how we shared the ball, and we were patient with it. We didn’t just come down and jack the 3-ball, which sometimes helps us, but when we’re patient we’re better.
“Joe Salinas’ passing was tremendous, and we got Aidan Sloan into double figures. Aidan played really well, and our guards did a great job of defending their guards, because they have a couple that are studs. Our guards took care of the ball and played great D, and the bigs scored.”
With the win, Roaring Fork (18-2, 8-1 3A WSL) will take on the Delta Panthers in the tournament semifinals, Friday at 5:30 p.m. at Grand Junction Central High School.
Cedaredge 36, Roaring Fork 29
Despite holding a 19-11 lead at the half Tuesday night on the road in the quarterfinals of the 3A district tournament, the Roaring Fork Rams girls basketball team shot itself in the foot down the stretch in a 36-29 loss to the Cedaredge Bruins.
In the loss, Roaring Fork (11-9, 4-5 4A WSL) shot just three free throws, while Cedaredge shot 21, leading to a bit of an imbalance in officiating. Now, the Rams have to wait for Sunday morning’s 3A state playoff bracket announcement, hoping that they’ll get one more shot to play this season. Currently, the Rams sit No. 30 in the 3A RPI rankings, with the top 32 teams getting into the playoffs.
Against the Bruins, junior point guard Logan Erickson hit four 3-pointers for the Rams, finishing with 12 points, while junior Kendall Bernot scored 10 points, six of which came in the fourth quarter.
Junior Gabby Santana added 2 points, while sophomore Emily Broadhurst added 5 points.
Grand Valley 34, Coal Ridge 31
An 18-point fourth quarter Tuesday night against the Coal Ridge Titans in Parachute allowed the Grand Valley Cardinals girls basketball team to battle back for an important 34-31 win in the quarterfinals of the 3A district tournament.
Scoring just 15 points through the first three quarters of play against a stifling Coal Ridge defense, the Cardinals turned it on in the fourth quarter as junior guard Shaya Chenoweth shook loose for six of her 12 points in the game, hitting a 3-pointer in the fourth quarter, while sophomore forward Lohgan Teter scored 4 points in the final eight minutes, and sophomore guard Kristin Medina hit a 3-pointer to help fuel the Cardinals’ comeback.
Coal Ridge started hot on the night, scoring 10 first-quarter points, but from there the Titans scored just 11 points in the second and third quarters combined. As the Cardinals busted out in the fourth quarter, the Titan offense came to life, scoring 10 points in the final quarter of play, but it wasn’t enough to hold off the Cardinals. Freshman center Taylor Wiescamp led the Titans with 13 points, while junior Sam Dunn scored 9 points.
Chenoweth led the Titans with 12 points, while sophomore Jordyn Pittman and Teter chipped in with 9 and 6 points, respectively.
Grand Valley (15-6, 7-2 3A WSL) will take on Cedaredge Friday afternoon at Grand Junction Central High School at 4 p.m. Coal Ridge (10-12, 4-5 3A WSL) will pack up and head home for the year after dropping Tuesday’s game. The Titans sit outside of the top 32 threshold (currently 37th) with no games left this season.
Grand Valley 69, Basalt 51
Hosting the Basalt Longhorns Tuesday evening inside “The Nest” at Grand Valley High School in Parachute, the Cardinals boys basketball team rolled to an impressive 18-point win over the Longhorns in the quarterfinals of the 3A district tournament, setting up a showdown in the semifinals Friday night against the Coal Ridge Titans.
Senior point guard Kade Hurst turned in a career-high 32 points in the winning effort, going 8-for-9 from the free-throw line, while connecting on two 3-pointers and nine other field goals for the Cardinals. Along with Hurst, senior Laytham Magana added 12 points, hitting two 3-pointers as well.
Grand Valley (17-3, 6-3 3A WSL) broke the game open with 26 fourth-quarter points, led by Hurst’s 11 points in the final eight minutes of action.
For Basalt (6-14, 4-5 3A WSL), senior Raul Torres led the way with 25 points, while senior Justin Henderson added 12 points.
The Cardinals will match up with the Titans at 8:30 p.m. Friday night at Grand Junction Central High School with a bid into the tournament championship on the line. The last two seasons, the rivals have met in the district tournament championship, with the teams winning one title each.