Vail Christian’s defense contributes to win
EDWARDS, Colorado ” Vail Christian girls basketball is already a step ahead of last season.
The Saints, who dropped both games at last year’s Lutheran Parker Tournament, split this year down on the Front Range with a 31-23 win against Arrupe Jesuit.
“I think it’s important for our program at any time to get a win,” Saints coach Doug Bruce said. “Winning keeps them going.”
For a young team playing in a new league come January, there will doubtless be ups and downs, but the Saints are quickly starting to build a foundation upon which to build.
With the exception of a season-opening 54-23 loss to a strong Hayden squad, Vail Christian is playing good defense. The Saints held the Generals to just 23 points in their win down on the Front Range and the defense couldn’t be faulted in either a 24-17 loss to Lutheran Parker or a 39-23 defeat at 3A Aspen.
“I like our defense,” Bruce said. “The girls have a lot of competitive attitude and are showing improvement. Their ball-handling is getting better and we’re doing a lot of shooting to find a way to score more points. We’ve made a lot of progress, but we’ve still got a long way to go.”
Michelle Disher went off for 23 points against Arrupe in the Saints’ win. Sammy Francis, Brook Bowles, Maty Peckham and Alexis Ellsworth have been among those also contributing offensively early in the season.
The Saints will get another taste of their new league today at West Grand and Saturday at home at 3 p.m. against Soroco.
VMS getting closer
GYPSUM, Colorado ” Move over soccer, volleyball and skiing.
The Vail Mountain School has a new team ” boys’ basketball. The Gore Rangers of the winter hardwood variety are competing as a junior-varsity team in their first year and working toward their first win.
Thursday, VMS fell to Eagle Valley’s freshmen, 41-39, on a shot with seven seconds to go in the game in Gypsum.
“We did a great job with our press, causing turnovers,” coach Vinny Cisneros said. “We did a good job defensively. We just have to box out a little more.”
And work on free-throw shooting. The Gore Rangers were just 4-for-22 from the charity stripe Thursday, and that will do it every time in a two-point loss.
VMS did have balanced scoring against Eagle Valley. Alex Bard and Sean Minett both had 10 points. Bartas Urba chipped in nine and Sean McKeever had six.
VMS hosts Battle Mountain’s freshmen Monday at 5 p.m.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 748-2934 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Jeff Shiffrin, with his wife, Eileen, made the Vail area their home decades ago, and together raised Mikaela and Taylor Shiffrin, who was a member of the two-time NCAA Champion University of Denver Ski Team.