Wednesday’s Vail Valley preps wrap
EDWARDS — The will be a lot of what-if-ing after Battle Mountain’s 44-36 first-round playoff loss to Discovery Canyon on Wednesday night in Edwards.
In an eight-point game, the what-if is Huskies guard Owen Ruotolo’s 12.9 points per game. The senior point guard picked up two technical fouls, by most accounts both calls severe for rather mundane actions, during the team’s win on Saturday at Rifle. That left him ineligible for Wednesday.
While there is no doubting that Ruotolo’s expertise in running the offense and his jump shot were sorely missed, there is no what-if.
For lack of a better word, stuff happens and Battle Mountain’s basketball team learned that on the court on Wednesday as they will in life.
Battle Mountain had a game to play and a two-point second quarter was its undoing.
“I think we can take the what-if out of it,” Huskies coach Philip Tronsrue said. “We were getting a little loose with the ball and turned it over too much. The what-if is out of the question. We matched up with them and we played three good quarters.”
Tronsrue said the Huskies had 17 turnovers in the first half alone and he was willing to bet a good portion of those came during that two-point period.
In fairness to the Huskies, they banded together and were competitive all the way through against the Thunder, which advances to play Golden on Saturday.
P.J. Kessenich hit a 3 with 5:21 left pulling the Huskies to within 35-33. That the sophomore was contributing in a playoff game was emblematic of the team’s effort.
Daniel Redinger got the first bucket of the game and helped out in the paint. Jack Sullivan sacrificed himself even though he’s not a prototypical-sized player in the paint. (As if to compound matters, Sullivan left the game late with what appeared to be a right-knee injury.)
Harrison Rubis did his best Ruotolo imitation with three 3s. And the Huskies went deeper on their bench as usual with Kessenich and Karsen Williams.
And the big fella, Liam McKenny, had another big game with 20 points.
“It was very exciting,” Tronsrue said. “We talked about guys who needed to step up. You win, you advance. You lose you go home. They wanted to leave it all on the court. They rose to the occasion.”
Widefield beats Devils
Eagle Valley basketball’s season came to end on Wednesday night with a 70-33 at Widefield during the first round of the 4A playoffs.
The Devils were on the postseason bubble after a loss at Palisade last weekend but did make the 48-team field.
Huskies hockey rolls
Battle Mountain hockey authoritatively advanced to the second round of the state playoffs with a 7-0 whitewashing of Cheyenne Mountain on Wednesday night at Dobson Arena.
Jensen Rawlings rang up a hat trick for Battle Mountain. Steven Dent, Parker Nash, Jack Suhadolink, and Carter Large also found the back of the net.
Logan Gremmer stopped all 15 shots he faced for the shutout.
The Huskies face No. 3 Fort Collins on Friday at the NoCo Ice Center. The two teams met right before Christmas with Fort Collins winning, 4-1.
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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.