Aspen boys silence Roaring Fork |

Aspen boys silence Roaring Fork

Jon Maletz
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado
Kelley Cox Post Independent

CARBONDALE ” When Walker Abrahamovich was introduced Friday night, a chorus of boos swept through the Roaring Fork High School student section.

That commotion continued nearly every time the 6-foot-8 Aspen standout missed a shot or turned the ball over.

“But every time he did something great, they got real quiet,” Skiers head coach Steve Ketchum added. “I told him our goal was to keep the gym quiet tonight.”

The entire Aspen roster made sure the Rams faithful were silent. The Skiers overcame sloppy play early, jumped out to a 15 point lead at halftime and never looked back. Four players scored in double figures, including Abrahamovich, who, in his return to Roaring Fork just months after transferring upvalley, pulled down 14 rebounds to go with his 13 points. The Skiers cruised to the 59-32 victory to move to 9-0 and 6-0 in the 3A Western Slope.

“It was a little bit different,” Abrahamovich admitted afterward. “I really didn’t know what to expect. I was a little nervous, but I thought everything went as smooth as possible.”

At least for the Skiers.

The Rams (1-7), who have made the state tournament in each of the past five seasons, held a 9-7 lead with 2 minutes, 27 seconds to play in the first quarter. But Aspen closed with a 7-2 run and jumped out to a 30-15 halftime lead.

The rout was on, as the Skiers overwhelmed a game but overmatched Rams squad with a balanced attack both inside and out.

“The kids played really well. They were very unselfish and solid on the defensive end,” Ketchum said. “Roaring Fork was well coached and played hard, but we were a little too much for them tonight.”

Aspen pulled away down the stretch, proving convincingly that it now has the upper hand in what has been one of the Slope’s fiercest rivalries. On the same court in January 2008, The Skiers snapped the Rams’ 53-game winning streak against league foes, one that spanned nearly five years.

Aspen went on to win all three games against Roaring Fork last year ” the two regular-season contests were decided by a total of just six points ” and dethroned the perennial conference champions in the process.

The two programs are seemingly heading in opposite directions now. Friday against rival Basalt, the Skiers will look to become 10-0 for the first time in school history.

“Friday night is going to be a huge game. If we win that, every thing we do and every game we play will be history,” Ketchum said. “These kids can make their mark on the history books.”

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