On Campus: Highlands Ranch/Lone Tree

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Highlands Ranch

• The girls basketball team, top-ranked in the CHSAANow.com poll, jumped to a 13-2 lead and notched a 65-49 victory over No. 2 Regis Jesuit on Feb. 12. Kasey Neubert led the team with 20 points and 10 rebounds. The Falcons (22-1) routed Rock Canyon 73-8 to wrap up the Continental League title on Feb. 15 and were the top seed in the Class 5A state playoffs. The team drew a bye and in the second round on Feb. 22 will face the winner of the game between No. 32 Liberty and No. 33 Lakewood.

• On Feb. 15, senior night, the boys basketball team nipped Rock Canyon, 49-48. The team (14-9) was seeded 23rd for the Class 5A state playoffs and played No. 42 Vista Peak Prep in a first-round game on Feb. 20.

• Kyle Hanson (15-17) qualified at 220 pounds for the CHSAA State Wrestling Championships, which will be held Feb. 21-23 at the Pepsi Center.

Mountain Vista

• Ben Grusing scored 22 points as the boys basketball team, ranked second in the CHSAANow.com poll, held on to edge Rock Canyon, 66-64, on Feb. 12 to set the stage for the regular-season-ending rival game against ThunderRidge. In the game against rival ThunderRidge before a sold-out crown on Feb. 15, Rhys Pulling had 18 points and hit a 3-point basket just before time ran out in a 53-52 win. The team (21-2) was the second seed in the 5A state playoffs and will take on the winner of the game between No. 33 Liberty and No. 34 Rocky Mountain in a Feb. 23 second-round game.

• The girls basketball team led by 23 points at halftime and rolled to a 60-33 win over Rock Canyon on Feb. 12 as junior Amy Holland had 20 points and 10 rebounds. Sara Vafale led the team with 11 points in a 46-31 win over rival ThunderRidge on Feb. 15. The team (16-7) drew a first-round bye as the 12th seed and will play on Feb. 22 the winner of the game between No. 44 Fairview and No. 21 Fountain Fort Carson.

• The hockey team scored three times in the second period on goals by Cameron Tillman, Brady Kruck and Benjamin Ford in a 4-2 win over Steamboat Springs on Feb. 15. The Golden Eagles were seeded 14th for the state playoffs and played No. 19 Resurrection Christian in a Feb. 19 first-round game.

• Four wrestlers will be competing in the state wrestling tournament. They are 126-pounder Aiden Cartwright (28-14), 138-pounder Adin Weaver (28-11), 170-pounder Vance Betts (27-16) and 182-pounder Cameron Flores (24-12).

Rock Canyon

• Game scoring honors went to Jaylen Eikenberg with 26 points but the boys basketball team’s rally fell short in a 66-64 loss to Mountain Vista. Eikenberg and Grant Figueroa each had 12 points in a 49-48 loss to Highlands Ranch on Feb. 15. After two losses by a total of three points, the team (16-7) was seeded 11th in the Class 5A state playoffs and drew a first-round bye. Canyon will play the winner of No. 22 Brighton and No. 43 Vista Ridge in a Feb. 23 second-round contest.

• The girls basketball team couldn’t recover from a slow start in a 60-33 loss to Mountain Vista on Feb. 12. Top-ranked Highlands Ranch rolled to a 73-8 win over the Jaguars on Feb. 15. The team (9-14) drew the 48th and last seed in the state playoffs and faced No. 17 Dakota Ridge in a Feb. 19 first-round game.

• Mike Pinkerton (34-7) qualified at 170 pounds at the Region 4 tournament for the CHSAA State Wrestling Championships.

SkyView Academy

• Natalia Miller-Forrest scored 24 points as the girls basketball team rallied in the second half to post a 55-37 win over Colorado Academy on Feb. 12. The team won its seventh consecutive game with a 45-11 victory over St. Mary’s Academy on Feb. 14 and took a 17-2 record into the 3A district tournament.

• The boys basketball team (6-14) fell behind by 22 points at halftime and lost a 69-42 game to Jefferson Academy on Feb. 16.

ThunderRidge

• Bailey Verk sparked the boys basketball team with 17 points as the Grizzlies used a big second half to overcome Legend, 53-40, on Feb. 12. A turnover in the closing seconds turned into a winning 3-point shot for Mountain Visa in a 53-52 loss on Feb. 15. Austin Holt scored 19 points in the loss. The team (18-5) was the fifth seed in the Class 5A state playoffs and will play the winner of No. 28 Poudre and No. 37 Pomona in a second-round game on Feb. 23.

• Heidi Haze and Taylor Malkloski each had nine points in a 39-38 win over Legend in a girls basketball game played on Feb. 12. Mia Thenell was the team’s top scorer with 10 points in a 46-31 loss to Mountain Vista on Feb. 15. The team (12-11) drew the No. 30 seed for the Class 5A playoffs and challenged No. 35 Columbine in a Feb. 19 first-round game.

• Three wrestlers advanced from the Region 1 qualifying tournament held Feb. 15-16 into the state tournament which will be held Feb. 21-23 at the Pepsi Center. Those wrestlers were 120-pounder Aiden Okamura (28-12), 182-pounder Brock Schilling (27-13) and 220-pounder Jake Olen (25-16).

Valor Christian

• In a rematch of last season’s state championship hockey game, the Eagles lost 3-2 to defending champ Regis Jesuit, which scored twice in the third period on Feb. 15 to pull out the win. Colby Browne and Colton Carlson collected the Valor goals. Valor was seeded second in the state playoffs and drew a first-round bye. The team plays the winner of the game between No. 15 Pueblo County and No. 18 Ralston Valley in a Feb. 22 second-round game.

• Cole Sprout, who won the Class 5A championship last fall with a course record time of 15.61, was named the Colorado boys Gatorade cross country runner of the year on Feb. 11. The two-time state champion also captured the Nike Southwest Regional cross country tile and was third in the Nike Cross National finals.

• Jack Howell (20-9) captured the Region 3 wrestling tournament title at 152 pounds and Jake Welch won the 180-pound regional crown and will be among five qualifiers in the state tournament. The others are 170-pounder Payton Polson (23-7), 195-pounder Robbie Shell (24-10) and 285-pounder Kaiden Parish (10-6).

• The Jeffco 5A league champion girls basketball team (21-2) was seeded third in the 5A state playoffs and will open in a second-round playoff game on Feb. 22 against the winner of the first-round encounter between No. 30 ThunderRidge and No. 35 Columbine.

• The boys basketball team (11-12) won its final seven regular season games. The Eagles earned a No. 30 seed and faced No. 35 Windsor in a Feb. 20 first-round contest.

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