Prep sports resume Tuesday |

Prep sports resume Tuesday

Phil Sandoval

Rifle gets a jump on the rest of the area’s prep basketball teams when they resume the 2002-03 season after the state-mandated holiday break with a girls/boys doubleheader at Grand Junction Central on Tuesday.

Both Rifle teams hope to open the new year with victories against the Class 5A Warriors after finishing the pre-Christmas portion of their schedules with losses.

The girls take a 3-2 record into Tuesday’s contest. In their last game prior to the break, host Montrose defeated Rifle 45-32 in the championship game of the Black Canyon Tournament.

The Bears advanced to the championship on wins over Bloomfield, N. Mex. and Alamosa.

When Rifle takes the floor on Tuesday, they match up against a struggling, yet talented, Warrior team, that features three starters who average 5 foot, 11 inches in height.

Willow Peppel, a 6-foot senior, is Central’s center. She leads the Warriors with an 11.0 point per-game average.

Other starters include 5-foot-11 Alex Carlson, who averages just over eight points a game, and 5-10 forward Brianne Brennan.

Key subs on the roster include 6-footers DeAnne Ficklin and Crystal Arnedarez.

Rifle’s tallest starters are juniors Krista Wagstrom and Julie McWilliams, who measure 5-11 and 5-10, respectively.

Central haulted a five-game losing streak on Saturday with a 64-59 overtime win over Class 4A Moffat County in Craig.

The boys game features two streaking teams at opposite ends of the spectrum.

Rifle, 2-3, is in the midst of a two-game losing streak. Central (2-5) has won two straight after opening the year with five straight losses.

The Warriors offense is led by Chris Johnson (10.8 point per-game) and Corey Aker (10.5). They get added help from Micah Dawson and Zack Hazelhurst.

Senior Ryan Shideler is Rifle’s primary scorer. He’s complemented by forward Zack Akin, along with juniors Jim Owens and Aaron Jewell.

Action begins at 5:30 p.m. with the girls game. The boys follow at 7 p.m.

The rest of the area restart their basketball schedules on Friday.

Glenwood Springs begins Western Slope League play at the newly-cristened Chavez-Spencer Gymnasium on the high school campus against Palisade. Rifle opens up its WSL schedule at home with Delta.

In Carbondale, Roaring Fork has a league contest on tap with Aspen. Further downvalley, Basalt faces Olathe and in Class 2A, Grand Valley travels to Oak Creek for its league-opener with Soroco.

Contact Phil Sandoval

at 945-8515, Ext. 538

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