Boys hoops: Golden Eagles in control of league race
Unbeaten and second-ranked Mountain Vista, coming off a 78-72 overtime victory over No. 3 ThunderRidge, is in the driver’s seat to win the Continental League boys basketball championship.
The Golden Eagles, 7-0 in league play, entertained Castle View Tuesday and has remaining games at Chaparral, against Legend and at Highlands Ranch.
“We’re just taking one game at a time, doing the things we do well and trying to get those Ws no matter what,” said senior guard Elijah Valdez.
Regis Jesuit and ThunderRidge entered this week’s action a game behind Mountain Vista with 6-1 loop marks.
Defending Class 5A state champion Chaparral could have a say in the eventual champion since the Wolverines play both Mountain Vista and ThunderRidge.
Including last Tuesday games, Mountain Vista faces teams with a combined 14-14 league record. ThunderRidge, which has games against Chaparral, Regis, Castle View and Rock Canyon, meets teams with a combined 12-16 loop record while the Raiders remaining opponents have a 10-18 combined record in league play.
MOUNTAIN VISTA - Mitch Carter had 19 points and 12 rebounds in a 68-47 win over Ponderosa and Jake Pemberton tossed in 27 points as the Golden Eagles beat ThunderRidge in overtime, 78-72, in a first place showdown.
THUNDERRIDGE - Joe Marucci’s 21 points paced the Grizzlies’ 73-47 win over Heritage. Marucci put on a show, especially late in the game, when he scored 25 points in the loss to Mountain Vista.
LEGEND - The Titans went 3-0 last week.
Blake Truman led the way in a 70-50 triumph over Castle View.
The Titans connected on 50 percent of their 3-pointers (9 for 18) in a 64-39 non-league win over Grand Junction. Jonathan Cosmann had 16 points in the win.
Zach Mihalicz scored 13 points and Taylor Jenson added 12 in a 49-41 victory over Ponderosa.
CHAPARRAL - The hot-shooting Wolverines shot 56 percent from the field and Jake Holtzmann had 18 points in a 58-46 win over Rock Canyon.
Wil Keyser scored 20 points and Chaparral made 52 percent of its field goal attempts in a 69-49 whipping of Douglas County.
HIGHLANDS RANCH - Regis Jesuit outscored the Falcons 37-17 in the second half to earn a 61-41 win over Highlands Ranch. Zach Braxton scored 15 points but the Falcons shot only 26 percent in the loss.
Evan Motlong’s 15 points was tops for Highlands Ranch in a 54-34 triumph over Rock Canyon.
Braxton had a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds despite Highlands Ranch making only 38 percent of its field goal attempts.
Top-ranked Denver East downed Highlands Ranch 73-54 in a non-league game that saw Motlong and Braxton each score 11 points.
CASTLE VIEW - Matt Dowsey’s 14 points was high for the Sabercats in the loss to Legend.
Castle View had a big first half, outscoring Littleton 40-13, in a 68-45 win that saw the Sabercats connect on 23 free throws compared to nine for the Lions.
Zach Mattice had 22 points for Castle View in its first Continental League win of the season.
DOUGLAS COUNTY - The Huskies had four players in double figures, paced by 17 points by Taylour Cavanaugh, in a 71-62 loss to Littleton and Riley Stewart’s 13 point effort was high for Douglas County in the setback to Chaparral.
ROCK CANYON - The Jaguars suffered losses to Chaparral and Highlands Ranch. Sophomore Tyler Garcia led Rock Canyon in both games with 17 and 10 point efforts.
LITTLETON - The Lions upended Douglas County but failed to make it two in a row with a loss to Castle View.
HERITAGE - The Eagles committed 22 turnovers in the loss to ThunderRidge that saw Grant Delphia get 13 points in the losing effort. The Eagles led Regis 17-12 after the first quarter before losing 87-57 to the Raiders.
PONDEROSA - The Mustangs lost to Mountain Vista and Legend.
Jonathan Barnes had his eighth double-double of the season with 21 points and 11 rebounds against Mountain Vista and Barnes and Dezmond James each had 11 points against Legend.
ARAPAHOE - The Warriors walloped Smoky Hill, 78-52, in a Centennial League game but dropped a 70-41 decision to Eaglecrest.
LUTHERAN - James Thomas’ 20 points and 19 rebounds paced a 60-40 win over Manual and the Lions, behind 20 points from James Willis and 19 points and 12 rebounds from Thomas, edged Colorado Academy, 77-72.
VALOR CHRISTIAN - Chase Foster had a double-double of 22 points and 17 rebounds as the Eagles rolled to a 70-48 win over Vista Peak.
Valor improved to 17-4 on the season with a 66-63 win over Cheyenne Mountain. The Lions trailed by two points heading into the fourth quarter but rallied to win as Foster finished with 27 points and 10 rebounds.