Weak tournament field a product of Tigers’ success | SummitDaily.com
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Weak tournament field a product of Tigers’ success

DEVON O'NEIL

FARMER’S KORNER – With two 3A opponents (Platte Canyon and Clear Creek) and 2A West Grand, it was expected that Summit’s 4A boys would run the table in their own Holiday Hoopla tournament. Yet despite what some may have thought, this was not an effort by the hosts to stack the field with walkover opponents – this was no holiday feast prepared in advance.In fact, it was almost the opposite.”We had to go with these teams, because nobody (4A) wanted to come up and play us!” SHS coach Mike Rathgeber said.Summit had 4A contender Jefferson committed, as well as Middle Park, a top-tier 3A team. But both schools pulled out earlier this year, leaving the Tigers, as Rathgeber put it, “clamoring for teams to play.””It’s disappointing,” Rathgeber said.Summit was able to fill its last-minute voids largely because the Hoopla tournament also includes a JV competition. “We’re the only ones that do that,” Rathgeber said.According to Summit’s players, the weekend’s easy schedule had its ups and downs.”It’s all right,” senior guard Aaron George said. “It’s not as fun as a challenging game, but …””It’d be fun to have some competition, but we can get our bench some time here,” said forward Mike Holloway. “That way, once January and February come, the big games, everybody will be on the same page.”Rathgeber, despite his disappointment, looked at it positively considering the Tigers’ difficult league schedule looming in the distance.”This is how I look at it,” he said. “Starting January 6, I don’t have an easy one till March. So to throw my kids some easy ones in the holiday tournament, that ain’t the worst thing in the world.”


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