Hamilton’s work not enough for the Tigers

DEVON O'NEILsummit daily news
Summit Daily/Brad Odekirk

LEADVILLE – Clint Hamilton’s monster game wasn’t enough to prevent the Summit High School boys basketball team from absorbing a shocking defeat to 3A Lake County on Tuesday. The junior scored 32 points and grabbed 21 rebounds in a dominating performance, but the upstart Panthers defended their home court with a 66-52 win over Summit a year after the Tigers beat Lake by 36.SHS committed 26 turnovers in the loss, which dropped the Tigers to 0-2 a year after they made the 4A state tournament. Summit coach Mike Rathgeber was unimpressed with his squad’s showing, Hamilton excepted.”It was as ugly as ugly gets,” the fourth-year coach said.

Lake County, which improved to 2-1 with the win, jumped on top right from the start and began playing better and better as it shed its underdog skin. The Tigers trailed only 31-24 at halftime, but their sloppy play snowballed into a comfortable Panthers lead.Even when Summit pulled to within six late in the fourth quarter, Lake responded and pulled away.”It just seems like we’re in slow motion,” Rathgeber said. “They’re playing at one speed, and we’re playing at another.”There’s a basketful of problems that are indicative of a team that hasn’t played together and are indicative of a young team,” Rathgeber said, “but this was to the umpteenth degree.”

Tucker Shelden and Justin Green scored eight points apiece in support of Hamilton, who Rathgeber said was “a man amongst boys.” “He tried to put us on his back and carry us, but we just needed more from more people,” the coach said.The 6-foot-5 Hamilton finished with more than two-thirds of his team’s rebounds.Things don’t get any easier for Summit, as the Tigers welcome 4A power Skyview, the No. 9-ranked team in the state, to Farmer’s Korner on Thursday night.

Tiger girls snowed outSummit High’s girls basketball team was to have hosted Colorado Academy on Tuesday night, but the visitors decided not to make the trip because of snowy weather. The game will be rescheduled, SHS athletic director Gretchen Nies said, though no date has been announced.Devon O’Neil can be contacted at (970) 668-3998, ext. 13630, or

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