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Valor too much for Summit hoops teams

Bryce Evans
summit daily news

FARMER’S KORNER – It didn’t take long for Summit to put two points up on the scoreboard. Just 40 seconds in, senior Michael Leopold caught a pass on the low block, posted up his defender and deftly banked a shot off the glass for an early 2-0 Tiger lead.

The rest of the night didn’t go quite as smoothly.

No. 9 Valor Christian put on an offensive clinic in the first half, scoring every way imaginable on the out-sized Tiger boys’ basketball team. The visiting Eagles led by 42 at halftime and soared to an 88-33 win.

“They were good,” SHS coach Phil Tronsrue said afterward. ” … They’re all going to go on and play college basketball or football somewhere. They’re well trained athletes and can really play the game.”

Keynan Roggasch led the Tigers with 16 points – eight in the third quarter alone – and never once came out of the game, a tough task considering the senior post was constantly matched up with players 3 or 4 inches taller than him.

Really, the whole Summit squad had match-up issues early on. Valor’s starting line all peaked out at over 6-4, and two of its guards – brothers Max and Christian McCaffrey, sons of Denver Broncos’ great Ed McCaffrey – knocked down shots whenever the ball was kicked out.

The McCaffrey brothers alone outscored Summit in the first half.

Christian McCaffrey, a freshman point guard, scored 10 points before halftime and had 14 points in the game.

“I’m not saying we could play up and down the floor with that first group, but we could do some things against them. We got some shots; they didn’t go down,” Tronsrue said. “In the second half, we played more against their second group, and that’s the group we’re more matched up against.”

And the Tigers played well after the break, even outscoring the Eagles 15-14 in the third.

Sophomore Garrett Tousey came off the bench in the third and gave the Tigers a spark, scoring three points and grabbing two offensive rebounds. And junior John Melott hit a nice jump shot in the midst of a mini Tiger run.

“I’m happy we never quit and I’m happy with the parts (of the game) when we played within ourselves and got good looks,” Tronsrue said.

Leopold finished the night with seven points, Summit’s second-leading scorer.

The Tigers (3-12, 0-7) have one more home game this season, Wednesday night against Golden, before wrapping up the season with a pair of Jeffco League road games. Tipoff Wednesday is slated for 7 p.m.

The Summit High girls’ basketball team struggled with turnovers at Valor Christian Friday and lost 71-38.

“They were an athletic team,” SHS head coach Rachel Dunaway said of Valor. “They were quick and rebounded well. They moved the ball really well, too.”

Taylor Greene led Summit with eight points, but more often than not, the Tigers weren’t able to find good looks at the offensive end. Dunaway said turnovers plagued the team all night, which has been the case in the majority of Summit’s losses this season.

The Tigers also were hindered by fouls. The team was able to put senior Chloe Webber back in the lineup after she sat out the last few games with a concussion, but another senior post, Ali Rookey, wasn’t able to play.

And when the posts started picking up fouls, the Tigers didn’t have many options to go to.

“We just didn’t have a very deep bench for posts,” Dunaway said.

The Tigers did a good of handling the Valor press, though, Dunaway said. The Eagles tried to pressure Summit in the backcourt all night, but the Tigers responded well, breaking it into open court and getting down to the offensive end.

Lauren Thomas chipped in seven points for Summit, as did Webber.

The Tigers (5-10, 1-6) have a tough game on Tuesday, when they travel to Golden for a 7 p.m. matchup.

“They’re a pretty good team, a disciplined team,” Dunaway said. “If we can limit our turnovers – that’s what we really need to focus on.”


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