Roaring Fork takes two from stingy Titan teams | PostIndependent.com
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Roaring Fork takes two from stingy Titan teams

Jeff Caspersen
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

PEACH VALLEY ” Torrey Udall and Matthias Weissl are growing ever used to the gimmick defenses teams throw at them.

The Roaring Fork duo are forced to contend with all sorts of double and triple teaming as opponents attempt to score an upset over the Rams, ranked No. 7 in Class 3A by RockyPreps.

Luckily, Roaring Fork has a capable supporting cast and a stingy defense to fall back on.



Holding host Coal Ridge a combined four points in the second and third quarters, the Rams escaped Peach Valley with a 37-22 boys basketball win over the Titans on Friday.

Despite intense defensive pressure, Udall and Weissl still managed double digits in points with 12 and 10, respectively. The 6-foot-8 Udall did most of his damage from the free-throw line, draining 8 of 11. He also had three blocks and nine rebounds.



“They really double team Torrey and me,” Weissl said of the scheming all teams, not just Coal Ridge, have thrown the Rams’ way this season. “Our other players stepped up and, so far, this was our best defensive job of the season.”

Alex Hernandez rose to fill the offensive void with several key jump shots and finished with seven points. Walker Abrahamovich added six points and Oscar Alvarado had two for the Rams (10-2 overall, 6-1 in the Class 3A Western Slope League).

But this game was all about defense. Roaring Fork held the Titans to no more than nine points in any quarter and Coal Ridge kept the Rams in check as well as any team has all year.

But, in the end, Roaring Fork’s defense was just a little better.

“It was such an important game. It’s the first time we’ve really played defense,” Weissl said, before his teammate elaborated.

“It’s the first time we’ve decided to play defense,” Udall added.

The Titans were without head coach Mike Cox, who is currently serving a suspension handed out by the school. Details were not disclosed by school or district officials, though Garfield Re-2 Director of Districtwide Services Theresa Hamilton did confirm that he is indeed suspended.

That left assistant coach Brian Blair manning the bench. All of his post-game focus was reserved for basketball, and what Blair considered one of his team’s more spirited efforts of the season.

“Roaring Fork’s an excellent team; we knew that going in,” said the fill-in coach, who will also lead Coal Ridge in its 4 p.m. game at Cedaredge tonight. “On the defensive end, our guys stepped it up in all four quarters. You can only count on one hand the number of possessions where we broke down.”

Leading the way on offense for the Titans was Andy Smedra, who finished with a team-best seven points. Blake Todd chipped in with five and Skyler James and Alex Klein threw in four. Klein finished with 12 rebounds for Coal Ridge, which dropped to 7-4 overall and to 4-3 in the 3A WSL.

“Roaring Fork’s an excellent team; we knew that going in,” said the fill-in coach, who will also lead Coal Ridge in its 4 p.m. game at Cedaredge tonight. “On the defensive end, our guys stepped it up in all four quarters. You can only count on one hand the number of possessions where we broke down.”

Leading the way on offense for the Titans was Andy Smedra, who finished with a team-best seven points. Blake Todd chipped in with five and Skyler James and Alex Klein threw in four. Klein finished with 12 rebounds for Coal Ridge, which dropped to 7-4 overall and to 4-3 in the 3A WSL.

Employing a pesky zone defense that forced Coal Ridge to settle for outside shots, Roaring Fork held the Titans to just 12 second-half points and ran away with a 50-35 girls basketball win on Friday.

Just three points separated the teams at halftime, with the Rams up 26-23. Coal Ridge would get no closer, as Roaring Fork, ranked No. 10 in Class 3A by RockyPreps, cranked up the heat on defense and poured in just enough offense to get the job done.

Rebecca Roeber paced the Rams with a game-high 18 points and 10 rebounds. Celeste Comings added 10 points, a total boosted by a 5-for-6 performance from the free-throw line.

Jade Bath netted seven points for Roaring Fork and hit a game-changing 3-pointer at the end of the third quarter that essentially sapped the life out the Titans.

“Roaring Fork did a nice job,” Coal Ridge coach Rick Schmitz said. “They executed very well on offense and limited us, most of the time, to one shot in the second half. (Bath) hit that big 3 at the end of the quarter. The lead went from four to seven. That kind of carried over.”

Morgan Jessup led Schmitz’s Titans, now 8-4 overall and 4-3 in the 3A WSL, with 15 points and 11 rebounds. Kaitlin Moeller added eight points and six boards.

As expected from a Schmitz-coached team, Coal Ridge’s defense made the Rams earn the win.

“They were tough,” said Roaring Fork coach Kirk Cheney, whose team improved to 9-3 overall and to 6-2 in the 3A WSL. “I know they’re a little lower on players than they started the season, but (Schmitz) has those kids playing well. They didn’t give up much.”


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