‘Tis the season: Winter prep sports start today
Though some are still firmly entrenched in the fall sports postseason, local high schools are clear to officially kick off the winter sports season this weekend.CHSAA permits the start of practice for its winter sports palette – boys and girls basketball, wrestling and girls swimming – today.Glenwood Springs will, for the most part, wait until Monday to get its winter season going. The Demon girls basketball team will take to the Glenwood Springs Community Center court for a non-mandatory practice today, while the other sports – boys hoops, wrestling and girls swimming – will wait until the weekend is over to begin practicing.That’s no surprise, considering Glenwood is one of those schools still playing out its fall season. The Demon football team takes on Sterling in the first round of the Class 3A state playoffs at 1 p.m. today.If last school year served as any indication what the future might hold, then the Demons’ winter season could run long as well.Glenwood’s girls basketball team is coming off a season in which it advanced all the way to the Class 4A Final Four. The boys hoops squad made the playoffs and went a round deep.”Our basketball teams, boys and girls, should be right where they were,” Glenwood Springs Athletic Director Steve Cable said. “It should be an exciting winter, too.”At Rifle, the boys basketball team and wrestling squad kick off practice today while girls basketball will get underway on Monday.The Bear wrestlers provided plenty of highlights during the 2006-07 school year and the always-strong program should do the same this year. Rifle graduated a state champion in Tim Long and qualified eight to the Denver state meet last season.Rifle’s girls basketball team developed a flair for dramatic victories last school year in making the Class 4A Great Eight.Grand Valley’s boys will make a celebrated return to the basketball floor after winning the Class 2A state title a year ago, though it’s uncertain the Cardinals will start practicing with a good chunk of their kids in the middle of the football playoffs.”With football, we don’t know what’s going on,” Grand Valley AD Jeff Bradley said.Grand Valley’s girls basketball and wrestling teams, though, will start practicing on Monday.Roaring Fork, too, is known for its hoops under coach Roger Walters. The Rams have some holes to fill after a fifth-place finish at last season’s Class 3A state tournament. It was the fourth straight trip to state for Roaring Fork, which finished second at state in 2006 and 2005 and third in 2004.Both the Roaring Fork boys and girls hoops teams start their practice today.Coal Ridge begins its third-ever winter sports season today with a three-sport offering – wrestling and boys and girls basketball.
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The Coal Ridge High boys suffered their first 3A Western Slope League loss of the year Thursday night on the road at Gunnison, falling to the defending league champion Cowboys 65-45.