Look, the Saints are ranked

Oh, it’s a happy time in Edwards, or more specifically, not far from the banks of scenic Lake Wilmore at Vail Christian.

The Saints boys basketball team is ranked No. 3 by the Denver Post, No. 4 by CHSAA and No. 6 by max preps.com’s computers. No Vail Christian team has ever been ranked that high at this point of a season — maybe the 2003 football team, but I’m getting old and can’t remember.

The bottom line, though, is all those rankings and $3 can buy you a cup of coffee — or $5.75 for a caramel macchiato, if you prefer.

You’ve played one game in about a month, and while coach Sheldon Kuhns and I take historical satisfaction out of beating DeBeque, the Dragons are not exactly the cream of the crop.

While 5-1 is a nice start, but …

• League play hasn’t started.

• You have only played once on the road.

• You’ve only played six games.

To justify your assorted rankings, you need to show me, and, more importantly, the 2A Slope, consistency. Can you play defense and rebound against the Rangelys and Hotchkisses of the world? (Grammar question: What is the plural of Hotchkiss?) Can you win on the road at Soroco next week and in West Grand next month? (Laugh, but the Mustangs are 8-1.) Can you finally beat Hayden? (Please, please, please.) How about taking care of those 1A teams you need to beat for seeding in districts?

That’s a nice transition to “The answers to these questions and more start to come on Saturday when Plateau Valley is in town.”

The Saints have had a nice start, and that’s all it is for now, until you guys start playing well night-in, night-out.

In other thoughts:

• I may have to go into the witness protection program if the Broncos and Niners win this weekend. The good news is that Battle Mountain athletic director and Packers fan Ryan McKay owes me a pound of cheese after the Niners won in Green Bay.

• And, no, I haven’t forgotten the Vail Christian girls, who are 4-1, and host Lake County tonight. Young ladies at this age are just less likely to get caught up in their press. Even though I don’t even use Twitter, here we go … #score40.

• Eagle Valley hoops has Steamboat Springs tonight. For the ladies, if you are fortunate enough to have a lead, let’s learn how to play with it. Playing with a lead is much like how you build a lead. Just keep going. Once we get to around four minutes left, slow it down a little bit.

Tonight’s boys’ game? While we in no way condone gambling, I’ll take under 80. Death, taxes and Steamboat defense.

• OK, Battle Mountain boys basketball, ouch. Summit County 62, Huskies 38, on Tuesday night, and it doesn’t get any easier at Steamboat Springs on Saturday. Welcome to your gut check.

• If the season were to end today, Battle Mountain girls basketball would be in the playoffs. We’ll give you a moment to clean up after your spit-take you just had there. Again, we have no illusions of grandeur, but you beat Summit and can play with Rifle. I’ve seen Delta, which graduated a bunch. Eight or nine wins might do it, and that’s not outrageous. The key for this bunch is believing it’s actually possible.

• Battle Mountain alpine looks loaded for 2014. The Huskies have a big test this week with a slalom on Friday at Winter Park. This is Battle Mountain’s first look at Evergreen, which has become an alpine power. (Yeah, we really thought Evergreen was just a soccer thing.) All three Nordic teams have a duathlon in Aspen, which means two chances to qualify.

• And, hey, don’t forget Battle Mountain hockey hosts Kent Denver on Friday. This is probably my favorite team of the winter because everyone’s on it — more Devils and Saints than actual Huskies with Vail Mountain’s Ben Barron thrown in. Eagle Valley’s Cody Byrnes, Battle Mountain’s Noah Beairsto and Vail Christian’s Cole Caynoski all wear Cs for “Battle Mountain.” Go you, Saint-ly Devskies of the Gore Range.

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 and cfreud@vaildaily.com.


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The VailDaily Updated Jan 15, 2014 09:26PM Published Jan 15, 2014 09:15PM Copyright 2014 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.