Summit Tigers girls basketball struggles in loss to aggressive Glenwood Springs team

Summit Tigers senior captain point guard Karen Barrios takes a shot in warmups before the Tigers’ loss to the Glenwood Springs Demons at Summit High School in Breckenridge Tuesday night.
Photo by Antonio Olivero /

Kayle Walker-Burns and the Summit High School girls basketball program know Glenwood Springs will always prove to be a challenge. Led by reigning league coach of the year, Rhonda Moser, the Demons came into Summit High School Tuesday night 0-2 on the young season and hungry for a win.

In a battle of two teams that favor the full-court press, the Demons (1-2) took control of the contest against the Tigers early on, racing out to a 19-9 lead at the end of the first half that would grow to an eventual 48-29 victory.

Walker-Burns said Summit’s struggles passing and turning the basketball over did the Tigers (1-2) in as Summit failed to register a single player with double-digit points.

Throughout the 32-minute contest, both sides consistently turned the other team over, but it was Summit who suffered more turnovers and more missed shot opportunities.

“I feel like this is our year that we can probably compete with them,” Walker-Burns said after the game. I don’t know if our mental focus wasn’t there. We were just a little off. We played two great games (to start the season) and it’s disappointing when the team works hard and is playing great and that’s not the team that showed up tonight.”

Walker-Burns said Summit will need to improve in terms of aggression, ahead of Summit’s trip to Rifle at 6:15 p.m. Thursday. She hopes to see more individual players hungry to score. Sophomore post player Brina Babich and sophomore Autumn Rivera led the Tigers with nine points each Tuesday. For Babich most of those come from a 5-of-6 showing at the free-throw line in the fourth quarter.

“This is Brina’s first true varsity minutes. She played a little for us last year as a deep bench (player), but this is her first real opportunity, and she’s a very versatile player,” Walker-Burns said. “She’s just hungry to score, she’s aggressive catching and turning to shoot, and that’s either going to fall or she’s going to get fouled and go to the line. It’s fun to watch her develop.”

Summit scored 14 points in the fourth quarter after scoring just 15 points through the first three quarters, but the effort wasn’t enough to make up for Glenwood Springs’ 18 fourth-quarter points of their own.

“The girls just need to be aggressive looking for their shots,” Walker-Burns said. “I think we had good moments. The press worked well and we were aggressive, but we didn’t play 32 minutes like that.”

Walker-Burns said heading into the game she digitally shared some press breaks and inbounds plays. The Tigers worked on them some in practice, but in a season shortened by pandemic health regulations teams have just one day of practice in between games — including the turnaround versus Rifle Thursday and then the turnaround at Battle Mountain Saturday. With those shortened preparation windows, Walker-Burns said mental preparation is that much more important.

“It’s hard — it’s homework for basketball,” Walker-Burns said.

“I was just kind of telling them, it’s a great thing we have a deep bench, but when somebody is playing off we can’t let them make mistake after mistake and play through it. They need to come off the bench and perform,” Walker-Burns added. “We were constantly subbing trying to find that right combination. It isn’t one person, we win as a team and lose as a team. It just wasn’t there tonight.”

The Tigers’ other top scorers on the night were Sarah Pappas and Callie Smith, who scored four points each.

For the balanced Glenwood Springs offensive attack, Matea Enewold scored 11 points while point guard Ella Johnson added 9 points, spearheading the Demons offense. Glenwood Springs senior captain post player Graci Dietrich only scored six points, but she provided a steady screening presence on the interior and at the high post.

Walker-Burns said sophomore guard Paola Arredondo injured her wrist during the game and is questionable leading into this weekend’s matchups.

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