AURORA — With De'Ron Davis sitting on the bench, it was up to Austin Conway and Ryan Swan to lead Overland boys basketball over Eaglecrest.
Conway and Swan, both seniors, put 27 points on the board, and a late entry by junior point guard Reggie Gibson, who scored 15 points in the second half alone, ultimately led to a 74-61 win on Wednesday.
Davis was relegated to the bench for much of the rematch due to foul trouble. He reentered the game midway through the fourth quarter — no longer a quiet player — and showcased his talent and size when it mattered most. With rebounds, blocks, and low-post moves, he put seven points on the board in under three minutes.
"De'Ron came in with points and rebounds late. Reggie played so well. It was teamwork and staying focused," said Conway, who put the ball in everyone's hands. "It was our home court and our amazing crowd, but we knew a great game was guaranteed against them."
Wednesday's win gave the No. 4-ranked Trailblazers something of revenge for an earlier loss to No. 3 Eaglecrest.
The two foes last matched in early January, where the Raptors won on their home court 66-54. Eaglecrest looked to keep their conference record of 8-0 untarnished but the Trailblazers upended that, handing them their first lost in 10 games.
All eyes were on Davis, the 6-foot-9 junior, a top Colorado player, and a top 50 national prospect for the 2016 season. In the last contest against Eaglecrest, he sat out with a injured knee.
This time, he spent the majority of the game on the bench, as well, due to early foul trouble. Davis started strong with four points and a block, but shortly after was called for a charge and a defensive foul that sent him to the sidelines for the remainder of the first half.
With the big man out, the game was all about speedy guards on both squads running layups and answering nearly every play of the opponents.
At half, Overland led 32-26.
At the start of the third, Davis took the court, only to foul a third time within seconds, sitting him down yet again.
That was when the senior/sophomore sibling duo of Elijah and Colby Ross took the momentum for the Raptors. The brothers tallied 13 and 18 points, respectively. Senior guard Peter Anderson added two clutch 3-pointers and 15 points.
They kept the game close for the majority of the second half, but it wasn't enough to defeat the equally talented Trailblazers.
The last five minutes were dramatic, as expected, but in the final bits, the Blazers kept possession and sealed their defeat.
With five regular season games left for the two conference leaders, the last stretch is about improvement, said Eaglecrest coach John Olander.
"We are both great teams. We won on our floor and they won on theirs," he said. "They faced us without Davis and we faced them without Nate Bokol.
"We could have rebounded and boxed out more, and we had too many turnovers towards the end. We need to watch film, find the open player and find out where we can make plays," he added. "It's all about all the little things."