Things are getting interesting in the boys' 2A Western Slope basketball conference. With less than a week until District 5 playoffs begin, just where each of the teams will finish remains anyone's guess.
With Hotchkiss dropping from 3A there is now an even number of teams, and four of them, Rangely, Hotchkiss, West Grand and Paonia, were 6-4 in league play after last weekend's action. Paonia and Hotchkiss both upset Rangely (7-11 overall, 6-4 WSL) over the weekend, and both lost to No. 2 Meeker — Hotchkiss by four points (65-61) and Paonia by nine (60-51).
As of Monday, Hayden (16-2 overall, 11-0 WSL) is in first place in the 1A/2A WSL. Meeker (13-5, 8-2) is holding on to second. Of the teams with records lower than Hayden, Meeker has the best overall record, with Hotchkiss one game behind at 12-6. West Grand is at 9-9, Soroco at 8-9, and Paonia is 8-10.
With one game remaining, the only team standing unlikely to change is Hayden. The Tigers won over Plateau Valley Friday and De Beque Saturday. They play their final game against Soroco (8-9, 4-6) this Friday.
"It's been kind of a fun year to be in the Western Slope League because there are a lot of close teams," said Paonia head coach Chase Roeber. There isn't a team guaranteed to win the district tournament. Paonia's league loss to Hayden was by a point, and the Eagles have lost two games to Hotchkiss by a combined 10 points.
Hotchkiss hosted Paonia last night to end scheduled league play for both teams (results were unavailable at press time), and Rangely and Meeker will face off in their final game of the season this Friday. Unless Rangely upsets Meeker, it's likely Hotchkiss and Paonia will meet again next Tuesday in district quarterfinals. The higher seed in each pairing will host the game.
And if Rangely does upset Meeker, then the No. 1 seed entering regional playoffs is up for grabs. Either way, how this week plays out "will make the district tournament interesting," said Roeber.
District semifinals will be held Friday, March 1, and finals are set for Saturday, March 2. The top four teams from each district will advance to the 32-team state bracket. Regional semifinal games will be held March 8, and finals will be played March 9. Team schedules can be found at Max Preps (maxpreps.com).blog comments powered by Disqus