Paonia wins league openers

By Eric Goold


The Eagles soared into the New Year.

Both basketball teams from Paonia High School opened league play with road victories last Saturday afternoon at Plateau Valley.

The Paonia boys were ranked No. 9 in 2A in the last CHSAA online poll and the Eagles girls were No. 4.

Eagles 79, Cowboys 23

The Paonia boys' squad got 22 points from senior Taylor Walters in its victory.

Paonia (7-1) won its first 2A/1A Western Slope League game handily. Dagan Rienks threw in 19 points in the win and Colby Simpson netted 13 points for the Eagles.

Paonia jumped ahead 17-5 in the first quarter and led 46-14 at halftime.

Eight Eagles scored points in the big win. Both Simpson and Rienks sank two 3-pointers and Enoch Kropp recorded a 3-ball as well.

Paonia was in command after the third, leading 61-21. Plateau Valley was led by Ivan Galindo's eight points.

The Eagles hosted Hotchkiss last night.

Paonia 74, PV 28

The Paonia girls' team ran much the same script and beat the Cowboys by 46.

The Eagles took command with a 20-4 showing in the first quarter and a 41-8 advantage at intermission. Sophia Anderson led the Eagles with 16 points, followed closely by Ashley Van Vleet and her 14 points. Taylor Carsten netted nine points and Brittany Kendall scored seven.

Paonia (7-1) kept up the pressure and won the third quarter 19-11. Three different Eagles (Mc-Kenna Hartigan, Emily Pieper, Chey Christian) scored six points in the contest.

Brianna Van Vleet scored four points for the Eagles, and Randi Rapke, Kassidy Rapke and Marisa Edmondson all hit a bucket for the winners.

Anderson and Carsten both hit two 3-pointers to lead the Eagles' long-range attack.

Paonia and Hotchkiss played the second game of 2A District 5 league play last night.