Silver Creek ends Lady Tiger hoopsters’ season in Sweet 16 |

Silver Creek ends Lady Tiger hoopsters’ season in Sweet 16

DEVON O'NEILsummit daily news

COLORADO SPRINGS – As it turned out, the Sweet 16 was more grapefruit juice than honey.Finally, the Summit High School girls basketball team’s improbable season came to a close on Thursday, as the Tigers lost to Silver Creek with a berth in the 4A state quarterfinals on the line.Sixth-seeded Summit had mounted two straight fourth-quarter comebacks to get to Thursday’s game, but it wasn’t to be against the agressive seventh-seeded Raptors, who won 60-48 at Mitchell High School in Colorado Springs.The Tigers lost largely because of a second quarter in which they committed turnover after turnover and were outscored 16-3. Summit rebounded with a third quarter filled with hustle and heart, but never got closer than eight the rest of the way.”This game was sort of a microcosm of our whole season,” SHS coach Jeff Neal said. “We played three good quarters and one bad one. But the girls never gave up. They showed a lot of heart.”Summit senior Shannon Buhler scored 15 points in her final high school game, leading the team for the third time in three state tournament contests. She hit three shots from beyond the 3-point arc, as did freshman Samantha Neal, who chipped in with 14. Junior Amanda Neal scored nine.Despite the season-ending defeat, Jeff Neal said, it was “overall a pretty positive locker room afterward. The girls were emotional toward Shannon, but I didn’t get a sense that it was gloom and doom.”This was probably a product of Summit’s seasonlong performance more than its showing on Thursday against young and defensive-minded Silver Creek. The Tigers finish the year 18-8, a remarkable record for a squad that had struggled to crack .500 the few years prior.”I couldn’t be more impressed with how the kids played this season,” Jeff Neal said.Silver Creek (16-9) will meet the winner of Thursday night’s Harrison-Broomfield game on Saturday with a berth in the Final Four on the line.Devon O’Neil can be contacted at (970) 668-3998, ext. 231, or at

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