Hoops: Aspen tops Basalt at districts | AspenTimes.com

Hoops: Aspen tops Basalt at districts

Michael Appelgate
The Aspen Times
Aspen CO Colorado

ASPEN – Three minutes into the third quarter, Aspen head coach Jeremy Haack told his senior forward, Bailey Everhart, to smile.

After a traveling call on the senior, Haack wanted Everhart and his team to relax.

They were leading by 21 points.

In the first round of the Western Slope League Districts, the home-team Skiers faced off against Basalt for the third time this season. Monday’s result wasn’t different from their other meetings. Leading by as many as 26 points, Aspen defeated the Longhorns, 47-29, improving its record to 10-10 and ending Basalt’s season at 1-19.

“This was a great team effort,” Haack said. “We have a lot of basketball to play this week, and I’m really proud of the girls coming together and playing as one. This is their 10th win of the season, and if you get 10 wins it’s really special. It’s all about their work ethic and commitment because they are amazing kids.”

Leading 25-10 after the first half, the Skiers used a 14-3 run in the third quarter to bury the Longhorns. Basalt could not get any shot to fall as it scored just five points in the third.

Leading the way for Aspen was senior Savannah Johnson, who led all scorers with 15 points. Carina Capobianco and Emmalee Erickson led Basalt with 10 points each.

Aspen will face the top team in the Western Slope, Olathe, on Tuesday. In their previous matchup on Feb. 3, the Skiers lost to Olathe, 82-33. In that game, Olathe built a 23-4 lead over Aspen in the first quarter. After the second quarter, it was 42-18.

“We know Olathe is good,” Haack said. “We know they’re the sixth-ranked team in the state. Our girls are going to come and compete, and we’re going to make something special happen.”

Despite Olathe’s 17-2 overall record and 13-0 league record, Haack believes his team can compete well against the No. 1 team in the league.

“The key is going to be taking care of the ball,” Haack said. “If we play great defense, we’ll be in the game.”

Aspen, which displayed a combination of full- and half-court presses against Basalt on Monday, will look to use that active defense to create chances on offense.