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CHS boys battle late losses

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Photo by Wayne Crick Cedaredge junior Christian Reynolds battles Olathe's Kevin Pacheco for a rebound on opening day of the First Colorado National Bank Tournament in Delta. The Bruins went on to score a 56-35 decision over the Pirates.

The Cedaredge boys' basketball team played three games last week, all in the annual First Colorado National Bank basketball tournament played in Delta and Paonia. Play began on Thursday, Dec. 3, for Cedaredge with a game against Olathe. Cedaredge won that contest, 56-35, and looked to be in good form to start the 2015-16 hoops campaign.

Unfortunately for the Bruins, there were two more games that didn't turn out the way the first game did. Friday's contest was with Coal Ridge and the Titans came back from a first-half deficit of 19-23 to claim a 46-43 win. Saturday's game with host Delta was also a loss, 48-43, after leading for most of the game.

Bruins 56, Olathe 35

Neither team could get into a solid rhythm offensively to start with. Olathe had just enough to take a 9-8 lead to the second quarter and stretched that one-point lead to a deuce after a 7-6 second quarter. Olathe's Daniel Vernon finished the first half with nine points to lead all scorers in the game at that point.

The Bruins netted 18 points in the third quarter to sneak out to a 32-27 lead heading to the final period of play. Cedaredge got four points each from Isaac Swoffer, Garrett Meyers and Christian Reynolds to help the Bruins separate themselves from Olathe.

Reynolds poured in nine points in the fourth quarter with Swoffer and JP Morgan adding four counters each to help the Bruins take charge with a 24-8 run to seal the win, 56-35.

Vernon finished with 14 to lead the Pirates' offense, while Reynolds recorded 18 points and Meyers chipped in 10 for the Bruins.

Titans 46, Bruins 43

Cedaredge shot seven free throws in a slow-moving first quarter against Coal Ridge. The good news was the Bruins made six of the seven attempts and held a 13-11 lead after eight minutes of play. Meyers finished the quarter with six of the eight points scored by the Bruins and had four free throws in five attempts.

Second-quarter action was another seven free throw performance by the Bruins with a less favorable result as Cedaredge connected on only three of the attempts. Still, the Bruins owned a 23-19 lead at the break. Meyers was, again, the top scorer for Cedaredge in the quarter with four points.

In the third quarter, Shane Gates picked up some of the scoring slack with six of the 10 Cedaredge points. The edge no longer went to the Bruins as Coal Ridge's Hunter Gerber seared the net for all 19 points scored by the Titans in third quarter play.

The game went back to a snail's pace in the fourth quarter, with Cedaredge claiming a 10-8 edge to make the final score 46-43 in favor of Coal Ridge.

Gerber was the game's leading scorer with 24 points for the Titans and Meyers finished with 14 to pace Cedaredge's offense.

Delta 48, Bruins 43

Play in the first half of this contest was tilted toward the Bruins as Cedaredge jumped out to a 17-7 first-quarter lead and held onto the lead, 31-24, as the two teams went to their locker rooms for halftime.

Gates and Meyers had six points each in the first quarter for the Bruins. Beau Byers led Delta's offensive numbers with five points over the same time span.

The tide turned for Delta in the second quarter. Suddenly, many of the shots that failed to find their marks in the first quarter were falling. With the turnaround, Delta closed the gap slightly with its 17-14 run. Freshman Kyle Mock begin hitting a variety of shots and led Delta shooters with six points in the second period.

Halftime adjustments by the Panthers enabled Delta to close to within four, 39-35, by the end of the third quarter.

Delta kept applying pressure in the fourth quarter. With the Bruins forced to commit numerous fouls, Delta was able to get a big enough lead to hold off a late-quarter rally for the 48-43 win. The Panthers shot 14 free throws in the final period and converted on nine of them. Byers and Jaspar Carmichael shot six free throws each and and connected on four each to account for eight of the 13 points scored by the Panthers in the final frame.

Byers scored 17 points to earn the game's scoring honors for Delta. Carmichael and Mock contributed 12 each to the winning effort.

Cedaredge's leading scorer was Reynolds who had 13. Gates was next high with 12, and Meyers finished with 10.

The Bruins are in Carbondale on Saturday, Dec. 12, for a 4:30 p.m. tipoff with Roaring Fork's Rams.

Delta is at Palisade on Dec. 11 for a 7:30 p.m. contest and then plays in Basalt on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. The Panthers face Roaring Fork on Dec. 15 with game time set for 7:30 p.m.

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