Shideler block preserves win
By G. sean kelly
GSPI Sports Editor
GLENWOOD SPRINGS – So often, the excitement leading up to a big game, particularly against an archrival, overshadows the game itself.
After the performance by the Rifle and Glenwood Springs boys’ basketball teams Friday night, that’s not a big concern.
A tight game throughout, the Class 4A Western Slope League contest appeared headed for overtime until the big paw of Rifle’s Ryan Shideler blocked a layup attempt by Marco Salmen as time expired.
The block secured a 44-42 victory for the Bears, and capped a wild fourth quarter that featured eight lead changes and a number of mini-rallies in front of a capacity crowd at Chavez-Spencer Gymnasium.
“They ran the play and gave themselves a chance to win,” Glenwood head coach Roger Duroux said of his team and Salmen’s final drive. “It was one of those things – either it was going to go in or (Shideler) was going to block it.”
While the Rifle senior came up with the big play, he admitted he didn’t like the position in which he found himself.
“It was a little too close of a call for me,” Shideler said. “I just went up and hoped they didn’t call a foul.”
The block was just the finale to a crazy final minute of play.
The Bears, thanks to a Jim Owens’ three-pointer, led 41-39 going into the last 60 seconds.
Glenwood sophomore Sean Flohr erased that deficit quickly, notching his fourth trey of the game, for a 42-41 Demon advantage.
The Bears took a timeout with 36 ticks on the clock and Owens tried for another long-range shot only to see Glenwood’s Timon Fish swat the attempt out of bounds.
After the inbounds, Owens got another chance with the ball. This time, rather than take the outside chance, he drove the baseline for a layup score and a 43-42 Rifle lead. He was also fouled on the play.
“I got blocked and then I figured, if (Fish) gave me the left side wide open I might as well take it,” Owens said of the drive.
Owens, who had 11 points on the night, missed the free throw but Shideler came down with the board. Demon players quickly converged on Shideler to force a whistle. While the Glenwood players and bench were calling for a jump ball (the Demons had the possession arrow), the referees called a foul on Glenwood.
“It was a close call,” said Shideler, obviously happy the “close” call went his team’s way.
Shideler hit 1-of-2 free throws for a 44-42 Bears edge and the Demons called a timeout with 4 seconds left to set up the play that led to Salmen’s drive and Shideler’s block.
Glenwood never held the lead in the first three quarters, but the Demons never let the Bears get more than six points ahead either.
Fish notched Glenwood’s first six points to keep the Demons close at 10-8 after the first quarter.
Neither team found its offensive groove in the first half. The Demons, thanks in part to strong defensive play by Andrew Blake in the paint, held Shideler to just four first-half points. Controlling Shideler, who averaged 22.5 points per league game coming in, was a key part of the Demon defensive plan.
In Rifle’s defensive end, the Bears didn’t give Glenwood room to shoot from outside and did a solid job of denying the passes to the inside as Rifle went to the locker room with a 21-17 lead at half.
In the second half both teams’ offensive weapons got going. Shideler, who finished with a team-high 14 points, scored eight in the third quarter.
And Flohr, who led all scorers with 15 points, also found his shooting touch with 12 second-half points. The Demons gained their first lead of the game at 37-36 when Flohr was fouled on a 3-point goal with 4:57 left in the game. Neither team led by more than two points from that point on.
“It was just a tremendous game,” Rifle coach Chris Lowther said. “Any time we thought we were getting away they would come back and hit a huge three-pointer. That’s what makes great games.”
Duroux echoed those sentiments, though disappointed his squad didn’t come away with the victory.
“I don’t think anyone had a bad game,” he said. “I just wish the score would have shown what we did out there.”
Along with Flohr, Fish netted double digits in the game with 10 points. Blake had a solid night defensively and on the boards and finished with eight points, including a perfect 6-of-6 performance from the charity stripe.
Glenwood drops to 2-2 in league play, while Rifle remains perfect at 4-0.
Rifle 44, Glenwood 42
Rifle 10 11 11 12-44
Glenwood Springs 8 9 9 16-42
RIFLE – Ryan Muldoon 0 0-0 0, Troy Weiss 0 2-2 2, Adam Krick 3 0-1 6, Jim Owens 4 1-3 11, Ryan Shideler 4 5-7 14, Chris Black 0 0-0 0, Jason Enewold 2 0-0 6, Aaron Jewell 1 0-0 2, Zach Akin 1 1-2 3. Totals 15 9-15 44.
GLENWOOD SPRINGS – Timon Fish 4 1-2 10, Forrest Lowell 0 0-1 0, Jesse Hansen 0 0-0 0, Marco Salmen 2 1-4 5, Jeff Screen 1 2-2 4, Jeremy Ureche 0 0-0 0, Sean Flohr 5 1-2 15, Andrew Blake 1 6-6 8, John Faris 0 0-2 0. Totals 13 11-19 42.
3-pointers – Owens 2, Shideler, Enewold 2, Fish, Flohr 4. Total fouls – Rifle 20, Glenwood 14. Fouled out – Blake. Technicals – none.
Contact Sean Kelly: 945-8515, ext 515
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