GYPSUM — Well, that was the longest six seconds in Eagle Valley history.
Down by one with six ticks left in the game, Battle Mountain had two chances for the game-winner, but Eagle Valley boys basketball’s defense stood firm for a 46-45 win against their archrivals in Gypsum on Tuesday night.
“It was a long six seconds,” Devils coach Jim Bair joked.
And that snapped a four-game losing streak for the Devils and got them in the Slope win column for the first time this season.
“This conference is such a tough conference,” said Bair, whose team is 3-4 overall and 1-1 in the Slope. “There are a lot of good teams. On any given night, you have to earn your wins. A win, I’m happy about it. It’s great.”
The Huskies actually led this one, 34-31, going into the last frame. Travis Edgar dropped in a lay-up, and Slater Sabo hit a 3 for a 36-34 lead in the fourth. The Huskies’ John Rulon evened it with a bucket.
Battle Mountain took the lead at 41-38 behind a jumper from Jerry Carrazco. Eagle Valley responded with a 3-point play from freshman Arturo Loera with 1:56 to go. The Devils’ Alan Caraveo knocked down two freebies, and Sabo hit another clutch jumper for a 45-41 advantage.
The Huskies’ Owen Riley gave Battle Mountain new life with a 3 with 19 seconds left, closing it to 46-45. Eagle Valley had its man on the line with 8.6 seconds left, but Edgar missed them both, setting up Battle Mountain’s ill-fated final two chances.
“It’s a tough loss,” Huskies coach Tom Padilla said. “You go 9-for-37 from two-point range, that’s not good. Then you go 7-for-17 from 3-point land — they’re not falling. You know what? We folded at the defensive end. We just didn’t play defense.”
Noah Ejnes led Eagle Valley with 13 points, while Edgar had 10. Riley led all scorers with 15.
Asmussen key for Lady Devils
Here she comes to save the day.
She is, by no means, Mighty Mouse. She’s Eagle Valley’s Megan Asmussen. The Devils senior canned two 3s during the second quarter just as Battle Mountain seemed to be making it a game, turning the tide and helping Eagle Valley to a 67-33 win.
The visiting Huskies had rattled off eight points in a row, closing the deficit to 17-12.
The Devils got off to a nice start, building a 17-4 lead with buckets from Carly Volkmer, Mariel Gutierrez, Taylor Martin and a nifty bank shot from Michelle Carbajal.
The Huskies countered with two straight each from Logan Nash and Elizabeth Olivas.
“I was just open, and I shot them,” Asmussen said. “I had a lot of chances, but I wanted to pass them into the post, too.”
“They were big. Her eyes were big,” Devils coach Sam Bartlett said. “She was open and she knocked them down. Megan gets us going on the defensive end as well. We rely on her for the backside boards. She’s not the tallest player, but she has a big heart.”
Martin led the Devils with 16 points, while Ashely Floyd had 10. Olivas topped the Huskies with 13.
That enabled Eagle Valley to capture its first Slope contest of the year after dropping its opener at Glenwood Springs last week. (The tournament, hosted by the same Demons last weekend, was nonleague.)
Meanwhile, the Huskies (3-4, 0-2) are showing some good things. Teams that see the Huskies on the schedule and assume a win may be in for a nasty surprise.
Battle Mountain is off for the break and hosts Glenwood Springs on Jan. 7. Eagle Valley has Delta coming to town on Thursday.
“Last year, we played our best basketball in December,” Bartlett said. “Right now we’re not playing our best basketball. We’re playing fairly well, but we’ve got some small things we need to work on. I think if we keep getting better, we’re going to make some dents in our league.”
“Last year, we played our best basketball in December. Right now we’re not playing our best basketball. We’re playing fairly well, but we’ve got some small things we need to work on. I think if we keep getting better, we’re going to make some dents in our league.”
Eagle Valley girls basketball coach