Hope you were part of the over 10,000 folks who were treated to an exciting conclusion of 4A and 5A big school hoops on Saturday!
Our Fever Crew was blessed to get an invite by Brian Roth to appear on the Xfinity Sports Report at the beginning of the season and our old buddy locked us into a prediction for eventual champions. There was something about the returning rosters of the teams that lost in their respective title games a year ago that stuck with us. Both Eaglecrest and Valor returned senior heavy squads who's leaders would be determined to return to the title games.
For once, a preseason prediction played out just the way we thought. Let's check out how it happened.
The Look Back:
5A Final 4
- Well go ahead and put your 6-foot-8 self even more on the map big fella! Cannon Casey covered the explosive performance from GW junior D'Auntray Pierce that vaulted the Patriots into the title game
- Dan Morhmann reports on the late game-heroics and Josh Walton's game winning overtime free throw that sent the Raptors back to the title game,
- Get the precious 5A photo memories right here.
4A Final 4
- Our guy Dennis Pleuss has your recap of Jalen Sander's "Stat-stuffing" night in Valor's win.
- Not easy to beat a balance Pueblo South team twice in the same season but Lewis Palmer did just that with efficient passing and stroking some shots from outside. Dan Morhmann with your full recap.
- Catch up with all the excellent action photos here.
- The Raptors executed a "pack it in...make 'em beat you from the outside" b'ball philosophy. Unfortunately for George Washington they had one of their worst shooting nights of the season on the biggest stage. The Patriots were 18-of-56 from the field and 2-of-18 from three-point land which ended up being a lethal formula. Bright spot for GW's future was big man Tray Pierce's 10 point, 12 rebound "double-double" in the loss. Energy plays from Victor Garnes Jr. and the steady hand of Pepperdine-bound Colbey Ross stood out on the night. Brad Cochi has your complete coverage
- Photos memories that last a lifetime here.
- How appropriate that the three seniors who have played together the longest stepped up big for Valor's first-ever boys state title. Cool and Calm Keison Crosby controlled the rock with the poise of a senior point guard, Jalen Sanders again was "stat-stuffin" all over the court, and in true Eagle fashion another senior Kayle Knuckles stepped up the most with a massive 32 points "owning the paint"! Brad Cochi with our report
- Championship worthy photos here!
The Look Ahead
As we saw in this year's state champs there may be nothing in sports that can make a team more motivated than coming up short in a championship game. Right now Rock Canyon is sticking out in our minds as a "way too early" 5A squad to watch next season. They came so close to that title game and the combo of Tyson Gilbert/Sam Masten backcourt returning as seniors has the Jags looking good.
4A? Look no further than Pueblo South. They looked destined for the title game after beating the defending champ twice but came up short. With only two seniors on this years roster look for Marcell Barbee and crew to return to the coliseum next March.
Thank you players and coaches for treating us to another outstanding season of hoops! You make it so fun to follow. And none of this happens without the support of my 'left' hand man, "Digitial Media Guru" Ryan Casey.
Enjoy the offseason, folks.