Wildcats fall to Columbine

LITTLETON — For Billy Dreher, it’s not the big things he’s worried about at this point in the Fruita Monument High School boys basketball team’s season.

“We’ve just got to work on the little things,” the Wildcats’ coach said Wednesday after his team’s 90-65 loss to Columbine in the first round of the Columbine Classic.

It might sound strange in a lopsided loss, but there were stretches at the beginning of each half when the Wildcats looked solid.

They took a 7-6 lead before the Rebels began finding their range from the 3-point arc.

Dreher has elected to go up-tempo in his second season at the Wildcats’ helm. Thus, he’s substituting, even platooning, at a fast pace.

Senior Matt Story, for one, likes the change.

“It’s nice to see this change of pace,” Story said of the Wildcats’ adapting to the quick tempo. “I like it.”

After falling behind by as many as 18 points in the first half, the Wildcats cut their deficit to 48-38 with less than three minutes gone in the third quarter.

That’s when Columbine made another run to effectively put the game away.

Still, Fruita Monument (2-3) continued to push the pace.

“We’re definitely hustling out there,” Story said.

Dreher agreed.

“We work hard,” he said.

Story, who scored 10 points and had a team-high seven rebounds, said, “When we get into our pace, we need them to shoot quicker,” referring to the Wildcats’ attempt to get opponents out of their rhythm.

Conversely, “We go through stretches where we’ve got to find a way to score,” Dreher said of a couple of scoring droughts that allowed the Rebels to pull away.

In their attempt to put up 60 or so shots a game, “We’ve got to shoot better,” he said.

Palisade 67, Battle Mountain 23: Zach Marengo scored 17 points and Skyler Miller added 15 as the Bulldogs won their Class 4A Western Slope League opener.

The Bulldogs (2-2, 1-0 WSL) took a 21-2 lead after the first quarter and led 32-8 at the half.

Girls Basketball

Palisade held Battle Mountain scoreless in the second and fourth quarters as the Bulldogs beat the Devils 67-15 in their Class 4A Western Slope League opener.

Christa Brown led Palisade (3-0, 1-0 WSL) with 15 points, Cruz Maestas added 10 points, and Ashlyn Brown made three 3-pointers for her nine points.


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