Vail Christian basketball takes 3rd at district tournament | VailDaily.com

Vail Christian basketball takes 3rd at district tournament

COLBRAN — Vail Christian basketball has officially advanced to March and the 2A state tournament. Feel free to spend Sunday, Feb. 25, hitting the refresh button on your computer or phone.

The Vail Christian boys finished third at the District 5 Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 24, with a 68-65 overtime thriller win against Rangely, while the ladies took fourth, falling to Soroco, 42-40.

Seb goes off

It's not like Sebastian Moritz had stopped playing basketball. No. 24's been a factor all season for the Saints (17-4).

But teams had been keying on him, and Moritz had not been on the score sheet as often as he and Vail Christian would have like.

Thirty points and eight assists later against Rangely on Saturday, everyone feels much better.

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Since nothing has come easily for Vail Christian this year, Saturday against the league champion Panthers was no different.

The Saints were down 46-42, heading into the fourth quarter. Rangely hit a 3 with 8 seconds left to send it to overtime.

And Vail Christian still found a way to win.

"We've played better basketball, but I don't think we've played tougher basketball than with this group," Saints coach Sheldon Kuhns said.

Zach McKeever logged 10 points and 14 rebounds, most of the latter on the defensive end, while Ethan Kuhns racked up 12 rebound, most on the offensive end.

Bryan Trujillo had 10, points, while Joseph Emmer had eight. Another nice statistical note was that Moritz was 15-for-15 from the line against Meeker and Rangely this weekend.

Rams edge Saints

It was close and Soroco won.

This is the frustrating theme of Vail Christian girls basketball throughout the years.

In a theme for the weekend, the Saints (14-8) fell behind the Rams early — just like against Meeker on Friday, Feb, 23 — rallied, but couldn't quite close the gap.

"It's a matter of putting two halves offensively together," Saints coach Doug Bruce said. " We had a great second half (Friday) night and a great one tonight. The girls keep battling and are great defensively."

Bracket time

Regional crossover play has gone the way of the dinosaur. Class 2A's 32-team bracket comes out Sunday.

The eight regional winners in boys and girls basketball, regardless of rating-percentage index — Meeker and Rangely, respectively for District 5 — get to host the first and second rounds next weekend.

The other 24 qualifiers from the district round are ranked by RPI and seeded Nos. 9-32. With their win, the Vail Christian boys moved to 12th in the rankings, while the girls were 22nd.

District play continued into the night Saturday, so the numbers were likely continuing to change until Sunday's draw.

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