Rifle falls at Moffat County
CRAIG ” Moffat County starters Anthony and Kevin Loughran scored 19 points each and the host Bulldogs held Rifle to single digits in the first and third quarters to post a 47-35 Western Slope League win on Saturday.
The loss snapped Rifle’s three-game winning streak and dropped the 8-9 Bears (6-4 WSL) back to third place.
Rifle managed to score only four points in the first quarter and trailed 11-4 at the end of the period.
The Bulldogs earned a seven-point lead in the opening eight minutes. Moffat County outscored Rifle in the following two quarters to boost its lead to 36-19.
Stuart Stapleton led the Bears with nine points.
Rifle concludes league play with home games on Friday and Saturday against Palisade and Delta, respectively.
Cards end on high note
Grand Valley’s 55-50 victory at Paonia vaulted the Cards into second place in the WSL. Previously, they shared the second spot with Paonia.
Colin Lauman hit for 15 points and was 11-for-12 from the free throw line. Center Chris Johnson followed with 12 and Justin Tindall finished with eight points.
Grand Valley secured second place on Saturday with a 69-65 overtime win at Walden North Park.
The Cardinals trailed by 12 points at one point in the first half, and took their first lead of the game on Justin Tindall’s field goal with a minute left in the third quarter.
But Grand Valley’s lead evaporated quickly.
With two minutes remaining in regulation, North Park held an 11-point lead. Freshman Sam McKinley tossed in three quick baskets to get the Cardinals close. Tindall and Johnson each had game-tying baskets in the final 48 seconds.
In overtime, North Park scored first. It was the final time the Wildcats held the lead. Field goals by Johnson, who had a game-high 24 points, and Lauman gave the Cards a 64-62 advantage.
A three-pointer by McKinley raised Grand Valley’s lead to five and Johnson’s final bucket gave the Cardinals a commanding 69-62 lead with a minute left.
Cardinal girls drop two
Grand Valley girls coach Mike Johnson said his team’s final two league games, at Paonia and North Park, were going to be tough.
He was right.
Despite balanced scoring by Holly Steltzlen (12 points), Wynette Jackson (9 points), Jamie Vance and Julieanne Jones (8 points each), the Cards absorbed a 50-48 defeat to Paonia on Friday.
On Saturday, North Park reeled off a 65-26 victory to secure first place, the No. 1 seed in the district tournament and the guaranteed slot in the March 6 regional tournament at Grand Junction High School that goes with earning the league crown.
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