Roaring Fork rules 3A Western Slope |

Roaring Fork rules 3A Western Slope

Post Independent Photo/Jim NoelkerRoaring Fork players end up in a pile of celebration after defeating Basalt for the district title Saturday in Rifle.

RIFLE ” In what may be her last game against Basalt, Roaring Fork senior post Tarn Udall made sure she and her team finally got the win that has been eluding her throughout her prep career.

Udall, who tallied 25 points and 18 rebounds, keyed a comeback run that netted the Rams a 71-59 Class 3A girls District 2 title-game victory and ended a losing streak to the Longhorns that dates back to before Udall was even a freshman.

“I hadn’t beaten Basalt my whole high school career,” said Udall, who was also awarded with the Western Slope League Officials Sportsmanship award prior to the game. “I wanted it more than anything.”

“They call it a monkey off your back, I call it a Longhorn off my back,” added Roaring Fork head coach Jacky Gaddis, who claimed her first district title with the Rams and first win over Basalt.

Late in the third quarter of a tight game, the Rams found themselves down 49-40 .

Then Udall took over.

The senior scored the next 11 Roaring Fork points, including three offensive putbacks as she refused to be denied under the basket. The run brought the Rams within two points before Megan Zeigel knotted the game at 53-all with a pair of free throws with 3:41 remaining.

Then Roaring Fork sophomore Ashley Jensen stepped up.

The backup guard netted two treys for the Rams, then hit a pair from the charity stripe to put Roaring Fork up 61-55.

“I just felt I needed to pick it up,” Jensen said. “We’ve been wanting (to beat Basalt) so bad and we knew we could do it, but we had to prove it.”

With just over two minutes remaining, Basalt’s Lauren Redfern hit a jumper and teammate Rochelle Moebius converted a steal into two points to bring the Longhorns within two points.

But foul trouble ended any hopes of completing the rally. Starting guard Deanna Spracher had already fouled out with 2:18 left in the game, and Redfern joined her on the bench 35 seconds later.

Roaring Fork ended the game with a 10-0 run, with all but two points coming from the foul line.

Along with Udall, Carly Velasquez tallied 14 points and, as a team, the Rams committed only 14 turnovers.

Moebius, who carried much of the Longhorns’ load with Redfern on the bench due to fouls, had an exceptional showing of 25 points, while Spracher posted 12.

With the win, Roaring Fork will host regionals next weekend. Basalt also could host regionals, but will have to rely on the selection committee.

In the third-place game, Cedaredge downed Eagle Valley 46-43. The fifth-place game went to Gunnison, which defeated Olathe 45-39.

The top five teams from the district qualify for regional. Seedings and brackets are expected to be released this afternoon.

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