Aspen girls basketball loses to Summit, but season is still a shining success |

Aspen girls basketball loses to Summit, but season is still a shining success

Aspen High School's Ella Trane dribbles in a girls basketball game against Summit on Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019, inside the AHS gymnasium. (Photo by Austin Colbert/The Aspen Times)
Austin Colbert/The Aspen Times

The chances were there for the Aspen High School girls basketball team on Thursday against visiting Summit. Another pass or a better shot and the outcome could have been different.

“Just executing the complete play,” AHS coach James Aldridge said. “Right now we are getting a lot of partial execution. If we can do the full work, we would probably be in a lot different position.”

The Skiers fell 40-29 at home to Summit in a girls-only night of basketball. It was a close game all the way through, with the teams having been tied at 16 late in the second quarter before a quick run to finish gave the Tigers a 22-16 halftime lead.

The teams went point-for-point in the third quarter, Summit leading 29-23 going into the fourth. The Tigers were able to put a little distance between them and the Skiers over the final few minutes.

“It’s about putting up smart shots and making good decisions with the ball, making sure your feet are set when we get the ball. Just little stuff,” Aldridge said. “The girls, they put up a good effort. I can’t get mad at them or fault them or anything. We just got to come back and get better every time we get a chance to.”

Aspen had a balanced attack on Thursday, with four different players — Maeve McGuire, Ella Trane, Climary Sanchez and Lexi Ferlisi — each finishing with a team-high six points.

Summit, which plays out of the Class 4A Western Slope League, improved to 6-12 overall and snapped a four-game skid with the win. The Class 3A Skiers fell to 4-9 overall, which remains a drastic difference from past years.

The four wins match the total from the past four years combined, where Aspen went 1-19 each season. AHS won only two games in each of the two seasons prior to that. The last time the Skiers finished the year with more than two wins was back in 2011-12, when they went 10-12 overall.

This is the first season for the Aspen girls basketball team under Aldridge, who coaches the team alongside his wife, Lindsey.

“Completely different team. They play with a different sense of urgency,” James Aldridge said of comparing the team now to the beginning of the season. “They are more responsive to coaching. They are starting to listen and think on their feet a little bit and react a bit better. It’s been good. I’m glad for the girls. They are doing a good job. They are trying to do what they can.”

Aspen is next set to host Moffat County on Saturday, with varsity slated to get underway around 2:30 p.m., with the boys’ game to follow. The Moffat girls are 11-3 and play Delta on Friday night. They haven’t finished with a losing record since 2009-10, and have won at least 20 games four times in the past seven years.

The Moffat boys are 4-10 entering Friday’s game with Delta.

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