Longhorns head back to the road
Life on the road continues for the time-traveling Basalt Longhorns.
This week, the Longhorns will caravan to Olathe and Gunnison for a long overnight weekend of Western Slope Conference basketball.
Last weekend, the Longhorn tour stopped in Gypsum for the anticipated matchup between boys WSC heavyweights Basalt and Eagle Valley. As well, the road game at Eagle Valley opened the conference season for the girls and the boys.
The Basalt girls , storming back from the holiday break, rolled past the Devils 70-46 to go to 1-0 in conference play. Overall, the Horns improved to 2-4 with the high-scoring win.
The Basalt boys, in another point-for-point battle, eventually lost to Eagle Valley 72-61 in a game that was within a handful points all night.
The Basalt girls put together four strong quarters to beat the Devils. “Yes, the girls played pretty well,” said BHS girls coach Debbie Cain. “But we still have a lot of work to do.
“But it is great to go 1-0 in the conference … start with a win,” added Cain, whose team faced solid competition in the preseason with games against Moffat County, Glenwood Springs and Buena Vista.
Ambere Cunningham led the Longhorns with a season-high 22 points. Kelli Corrigan added 16. Kate LeMaster scored 11.
Cunningham also contributed nine steals and five assists, according to Cain.
Jaime Mayne led Eagle Valley with 25 points.
“The girls are really excited,” Cain said. “It’s tough, because they are so young. I just hope every game they’ll improve. And then hopefully they can work in the offseason and continue to improve next year,” Cain added.
The Basalt boys walked right into a foul-fest in Gypsum last weekend.
With fouls and technical fouls accenting the entire game, the Devils pulled out the 72-61 victory in a close, tight, physical game.
“Eagle Valley played really well. They were clicking on all cylinders. I give Phil (Cain), all the credit,” Crowley said of fellow Basalt alum Phil Cain, in his second year as the head coach at Eagle Valley.
“And our defense was just really poor,” he said, describing his team as “flat-footed” throughout the game.
“When we come to play defensively usually we can put it together,” Crowley added.
But against Eagle Valley, he said, the team’s defense did not show the necessary intensity.
The Horns, he said, gave up five 3-pointers in the game – including four in the first half.
Basalt did spread the scoring, per usual, with Sean Koutsakis leading with 16. Michael Palmer added 14, as did Jon Stahlman.
Rodney Crawford hit for 10.
Ty Sterkel stepped up for Eagle Valley with big Jim Bair battling foul problems. Sterkel finished with a career-high 22 points.
Bair finished with 16 after scoring 14 in the first half.
Basalt’s foul trouble started early with Stahlman picking up two in the first three minutes of the game.
And Woolery fouled for with still four minutes to play.
“And we’re back on the road this weekend,” Crowley added of the brutal travel schedule facing Basalt this season.
The Horns last played at home on Dec. 12. The stretch of six consecutive road games stretches all the way to Jan. 23, including the holiday break.
After playing at Olathe and Gunnison this weekend, the Longhorns will head to Meeker on Jan. 22.
Finally on Jan. 23, Basalt will be back in the Big House to host Paonia.
This weekend’s trip to Olathe and Gunnison offers two more qualify league opponents for the BHS boys, 4-3 overall and 0-1 in the Western Slope Conference.
The Olathe boys lost 58-43 at Aspen last weekend but rebounded to beat Paonia 72-54.
Gunnison’s boys lost to Roaring Fork 59-39 and Aspen 67-39.
The Olathe girls lost twice last weekend, against Aspen and Paonia.
Gunnison’s girls lost to Roaring Fork 41-32 and Aspen 32-25.
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