Central gets ninth seed at state softball

There’s good news and bad news for the Central High School softball team..

The Warriors got the top seed of the eight second-place finishers in their respective tournaments in last week’s Class 5A regional playoffs. That’s the good news.

The bad news is, that puts Central as the No. 9 seed in Friday’s round of 16 at the Class 5A state tournament at Aurora Sports Park.

Granted, defeating eight seed Ralston Valley in Friday’s round of 16 is a realistic goal for Central (19-3). In doing so, however, the Warriors would most likely draw the tournament’s No. 1 seed, Rocky Mountain (20-1), in Friday afternoon’s quarterfinals.

“We’re going to have to play any of those (top) teams anyway,” Central coach Sabrina Juarez said.

The tournament bracket was released Tuesday after all eight regional tournaments were completed Monday. Rain on Saturday caused the postponement of the final game in a couple of regionals.

Central got the second seed in Region 6 after losing to Columbine 2-1 in the winners’ bracket final.

Central and Ralston Valley play one of four games at 10 a.m. at Complex C at Aurora Sports Park.

The other four round-of-16 games are at 12:15 p.m.

The winners advance to the quarterfinals at 2:30 p.m.

“We’re on the opposite side of the bracket as Legacy (which defeated Central at last year’s state tournament), so we wouldn’t see them until the state finals,” Juarez said.

Delta was the only Western Slope team to qualify for the Class 4A tournament, which begins Friday at Complex B. As the second-place finisher in Region 2, the Panthers (12-10) drew the 16th and final seed. They’ll play top seed Wheat Ridge (19-2) at 10 a.m.

The 3A state tournament begins Thursday with 24 teams.

Gunnison (12-5) is the 10th seed. The Cowboys open at 2:30 p.m at Complex A against 23rd-seeded Sheridan (7-6). The winner advances to Friday’s round of 16 against the seventh seed, Limon (15-4).

Basalt got the Western Slope’s top seed in the 3A tournament. The Longhorns (12-4) are the eighth seed and drew a bye in Thursday’s round. They’ll play at 10 a.m. on Friday against the winner of Thursday’s Faith Christian-Machebeuf game.

Semifinals in all classifications are at 10 a.m. on Saturday. The 3A championship game is at 1 p.m. on Saturday, the 4A title game at 1:30 and the 5A championship at 2 p.m.


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