Vail Mountain School hoops makes league debut |

Vail Mountain School hoops makes league debut

OAK CREEK – The Vail Mountain school varsity boys basketball team made its 2A Slope debut Friday night and did just fine.

Representing a school best known for its skiing and soccer, the hoopsters walked out onto the 2A varsity stage with a tight 49-41 loss at Soroco.

“I was pleasantly surprised with how we came out and got our feet wet,” said coach Vinny Cisneros, who is in his third year at VMS – the first two seasons, the Gore Rangers played a junior varsity schedule. “I think we surprised Soroco a little bit. I they thought they might get an easy win. We definitely kept ourselves in the game with good, aggressive defense.”

VMS actually led for part of the way and was in striking distance until the Gore Rangers had to foul late.

Paco Holguin led VMS with 15 points, while Sean McKeever had 12. Cisneros also gave out post-game kudos to J.C. Hernandez and Mitch Saalfield for their defensive efforts.

One major lesson the Gore Rangers learned from their first league game is common one, even to veteran teams- free throws are critical. VMS was 7-for-27 from the charity stripe and that could well have been the difference Friday.

“Those free throws killed us,” Cisneros said. “I think the jitters got the best of us.”

VMS does not have long to dwell on that missed opportunity as the Gore Rangers host West Grand today at 5 p.m.

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 or

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