Panthers score hoop wins

By Wayne Crick

Delta High School's boys basketball team continues to have an up and down season after splitting games played at home last week. A 54-51 loss to Coal Ridge was a gut-wrencher while a 69-53 win over Olathe wasn't deeply satisfying either.

For the girls it was a win on Friday against Coal Ridge, 52-41, and a loss to Olathe, 49-33, on Saturday.

CR 54, Delta 51

The Panthers trailed by five after one period and were leading 28-27 at the half. The Titans regained the lead after three quarters (41-39) and were able to capitalize on Delta miscues in the fourth quarter to steal a 54-51 3A WSL game.

Delta was a combined 13 of 15 at the charity stripe on the shooting of Jaspar Carmichael (6-6), Beau Byers (5-6) and Logan Freed (3-4) but was unable to convert shots in its offense when it needed key baskets.

Jon Robinson and Byers paced Delta's offense with 13 and 12 points, respectively. Coal Ridge's Brandon Herrera scored 18 points to lead all scorers in the game.

The Panthers (1-2 and 6-7) find themselves in seventh place in 3A WSL standings. Basalt (3-0 and 11-1) lead the way with Coal Ridge (3-1 and 9-5) in second place.

Roaring Fork, Grand Valley, Gunnison and Aspen all have spots above the Panthers in league standings.

Delta 69, Olathe 53

Delta put up big numbers in the middle quarters to stave off a charge by Olathe's Pirates on Saturday afternoon.

The Panthers, behind Carmichael's nine points, scored 21 points in the second period and used six points each from Carmichael and Freed to pour in 19 points in the third quarter. Delta was leading by 14 at that point.

Four players had double-digit scoring for Delta, paced by Carmichael's 21 counters. Robinson was next high with 18 points followed by Byers' 12 and Freed's 11 points.

Carmichael continued shooting the ball well from the free throw line with a nine for 10 effort.

Jorge Gonzales enjoyed another good shooting day for the Pirates with 18 points, 12 coming off shots beyond the 3-point arc. Daniel Vernon scored nine of his 11 points in the fourth quarter.

Delta 52, CR 41

Even though it wasn't an easy task, the Panthers were happy to get the 11-point win against a scrappy Coal Ridge team.

Emily Nortnik scattered 15 points over four quarters to lead all scorers in the game. The Panthers' senior was dominate at both ends of the floor.

Emily Baier was a welcome sight for Delta fans and scored 10 points in the game. Freshman Sara Geddes was also a double-digit scorer with 11 points for the Panthers.

Delta led all the way but could not entirely shake the pesky Titan defenders.

A 33-21 lead at halftime provided enough cushion for the Panthers to grab their ninth win of the season.

Olathe 49, Delta 33

The Pirates were ready for their rematch with Delta. The Panthers nudged Olathe 54-53, in Olathe, on Dec. 13.

A slow start escalated to a Pirates' lead, 29-18, by halftime. Miranda Pacheco accounted for 16 of the 29 points scored by Olathe in the half. In all, the Pirates hammered home five 3-pointers in the second quarter to take control of the game.

A frigid third quarter left the Panthers with just four points for the quarter while Olathe stretched its lead by six more points, 39-22.

Pacheco finished the game with 28 points, six more than in the two team's previous meeting, and put a finishing touch on the game with a perfect eight for eight at the free throw line in the fourth quarter. She was nine for 11 for the game.

Geddes had nine points for the Panthers and Baier finished with seven.

Delta hosts Aspen (0-3, 1-12) on Thursday, Feb. 2 and travels to Gunnison (3-0 and 6-6) on Friday. Friday's varsity games are set for 5:30/7 p.m.

Cedaredge (2-1 and 8-4) comes to Delta (2-1 and 9-4) on Feb. 7 for games set for 6 and 7:30 p.m.