Roaring Fork girls beat Basalt, snap 37-game losing streak
Aspen, CO Colorado
CARBONDALE – Autumn Grandberry clung to the ball tightly as the final seconds ticked off the clock.
A mob scene, replete with hugs and shrieks of joy, followed near center court.
For the first time in 37 games and nearly two years, Roaring Fork had won a girls basketball game.
“That was a long time coming,” Rams coach Justin Perdue said with a smile in the wake of Saturday’s 42-32 win over visiting Basalt. “They just put it all together down the stretch, which was really good to see.”
After going into halftime down 12-11, Perdue’s squad came alive in the third quarter.
After an Emmalee Erickson layup pushed Basalt’s lead to 14-11, Roaring Fork put up eight straight points – the final four on buckets by Kaleigh Wisroth – to make it 19-14.
Shots continued to fall for the Rams, who shot at a 7-for-9 clip in the frame to take a 26-17 lead after three.
A 3-pointer by Shaeley Lough and another Wisroth bucket pushed the lead to 31-19 early in the fourth quarter.
From there, the Rams finished off the Longhorns at the foul line by hitting 7 of 10 from the stripe in the final frame.
“They played well when it mattered most,” Perdue said. “They knocked down their free throws. I told them it was going to come down to free throws and turnovers, and they did it. They did it.”
Wisroth finished with 13 points and nine rebounds for the Rams, now 1-16 overall and 1-10 in the 3A Western Slope League.
Lough added 10 points and five boards and Hattie Gianinetti put up seven points and grabbed seven rebounds.
“It’s just an insane amount of joy,” Wisroth relayed. “That was a long time waiting and everyone needed that win to boost our confidence, to boost everything.”
Wisroth, a junior, suited up for the Rams back on Feb. 23, 2009, the date Roaring Fork last won a game. Facing Aspen in that season’s 3A Western Slope League play-in game, the Rams topped the Skiers, 46-39.
Wisroth, who said she played maybe a minute against Aspen that night, hopes the most recent victory breeds a few more.
“I think now that we know how winning feels we’re not going to want to let it go,” she said. “We’re going to push even harder.”
Roaring Fork hopes to add to its victory count at Coal Ridge on Friday.
As for Basalt, which dropped to 5-12 overall and to 3-9 in the 3A WSL, it’s back to the drawing board in preparation for a Tuesday trip to Aspen.
On Saturday, the Longhorns were led by Erickson’s nine points. Carina Capobianco added eight.
“Roaring Fork just came and wanted to win,” said Longhorns coach Lauren Redfern, whose team was missing point guard Jamie Matherly due to an eligibility issue. “It’s a little bit hard with our point guard being out, but if we would have played how we played last night [against Coal Ridge], with good defense and good passing, we would have definitely put up a better fight.”
The 3-pointers were falling. The inside game produced points and rebounds en masse. The Rams could seemingly do no wrong in a 67-33 boys basketball win over Basalt on Saturday.
“When we get that good balance of 3s and the inside game, I think we’re tough to stop,” said Roaring Fork senior Dalton Handy, who finished with three of the Rams’ eight triples and a team-high 13 points. “Hopefully we can work toward making that more consistent. That wasn’t there all last night against Aspen. I think that just comes from being aggressive.”
Roaring Fork rebounded nicely from Friday’s 56-53 double-overtime loss to the Skiers, jumping ahead of the Longhorns by scoring 16 of the game’s first 18 points and never letting up.
“As bad as last night was, today was just as good as last night was bad,” Rams coach Larry Williams said. “Everything we tried worked, and it was against a good team – a team that plays hard.”
Dakotah Grett matched Handy’s 13 points for Roaring Fork (10-7, 7-4). Jake Strack-Loertscher added 10, Trent Reeds nine and Trae Moxley eight. Moxley wreaked havoc on the boards as well, pulling down 13 rebounds.
“We didn’t have an answer for [Moxley],” Basalt coach Jon Pettit said. “We struggled with him inside and they shot the ball well from the outside.”
Blake Scherer led the Longhorns (5-13, 2-10) with 11 points. Sam Morrison chipped in with nine.
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