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Aspen girls celebrate Evan’s birthday

Todd Hartley

The Aspen High School girls basketball team made sure forward Jill Evans had a very happy 18th birthday Tuesday night at the Aspen Skierdome with a 75-57 win over a feisty but undersized 4A team from Glenwood Springs High School.

The Demons came out fired up against the much larger Skiers and led the game 9-8 a few minutes in, but they had no answer for Aspen’s imposing front line of Rebecca Anderson and Marta Losonczy, who combined for 14 points in the quarter. Katie Richelieu had six points, including a late 3-pointer, to spark the Demons, who trailed just 17-14 after the first period.

The second quarter, however, would be a different story as the birthday girl caught fire.

Evans drained four 3-pointers and singlehandedly outscored Glenwood 14-11 in the frame as the Skiers broke out to a 15-point halftime lead.

Aspen’s lead would grow to as much as 22 early in the third quarter before six straight points from Richelieu made the score 50-34.

But the Skiers answered right back with seven straight points to quash any thoughts of a Glenwood comeback.

Losonczy paced the Skiers’ offense in the win with 29 points and solid work on the boards. Evans finished her big night with 21 points, and Ellen Falender chipped in with 11 points, solid defense and some heady point guard play.

Anderson had eight points and Kelli Dangler scored six.

Richelieu led Glenwood with 20 points in the losing effort. Jessica Spuhler had 10 and Samantha Blake 6 as ten different Demons scored in the game.

After the game, Aspen coach Lance Finkbeiner was full of praise for the birthday girl, who also scored 21 against Eagle Valley in Aspen’s last game.

“Jill’s been phenomenal,” he said. “Her shooting in that second quarter was unbelievable.

“In the second half, it was nice to have other girls besides Jill and Marta play well,” he added. “Ellen really stepped up, we shot well and we’re executing the plays I call.”

The win puts the Skiers’ record at 9-1 (3-0 in league) heading into this weekend’s Western Slope League action. Friday night, Aspen will play Hotchkiss at 6:30 p.m. in the Aspen Skierdome, and then, on Saturday, Finkbeiner and his troops will hit the road for a 4 p.m. game at Cedaredge.

The Aspen boys, 9-3 on the season (2-1 in league), will also host Hotchkiss Friday night, with the opening tip slated for 8 p.m, before embarking for Cedaredge. The boys varsity game at Cedaredge is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m.

The Basalt High School boys and girls teams both played last night at Hotchkiss, where the girls put an undefeated, 11-0 (4-0 in league) season on the line against the 5-6 (2-2 in league) Bulldogs in the first game of the evening.

The Basalt boys (7-4 overall, 3-1 in league) took on a 4-8 (1-3 in league) Hotchkiss team in the nightcap.

Next up for the Longhorns will be two more road contests tonight in Minturn against the Battle Mountain Huskies. Girls’ tipoff is at 6:30. The boys will square off at 8 p.m.


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