After climbing to the top of the 3A WSL standings a week ago, Delta (4-0 and 12-1) maintained its perch on top with a 51-26 win at home against Palisade (3-3 and 5-12 in 4A WSL) and a 72-48 decision over Grand Valley (2-2 and 20-3).
Delta's win against Palisade was spearheaded by Sara Geddes' 16 points and a stout defense. Geddes also had six rebounds and five steals in the win. Freshman Erika Kuta contributed 10 points and did some insurance work with eight rebounds and four steals for the Panthers.
The Panthers led from the start with a halftime lead of 22-11 that grew to 40-20 with one period left to play.
Alexis Marushack had eight points to lead Palisade's offense.
Grand Valley played the Panthers tough for one quarter and trailed 14-12 going to the second period.
Delta's defense created turnovers to spark a 26-12 offensive spurt in the second quarter. Geddes had eight points in the run with Kuta collecting six points of her own.
Seven players figured in Delta's 21-point fourth quarter to seal the win, 72-48.
Kuta's 19 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals dominated Delta's stats in the win. Geddes finished with 18 points and had seven rebounds, two assists and four steals. Alexa Huff finished with seven points with Missa Webb contributing seven points, four assists and four steals. Keely Porter had eight rebounds in the win.
Grand Valley's Shaya Chenowith claimed game-scoring honors with her 26 points and Loghan Teter finished with 11.
Delta will put its record on the line this next week with games against Cedaredge (Jan. 29) and Moffat County (5-0 and 11-3) in Craig on Feb. 1, at 6 p.m.
With last Tuesday's loss (50-36) to Palisade behind them, league-leading Delta powered its way past potential spoiler Grand Valley, 69-32, on Thursday. The win moves Delta up the ladder to 4-0 in 3A WSL play and 9-4 overall. The Panthers are the only team with an unbeaten league record at this time.
Palisade's defense was a key ingredient in the Bulldogs' recipe for victory on Jan. 25. Delta, a usually high-scoring team, was held to single digits in three quarters in its 14-point loss to the Bulldogs. Delta's defense was lacking on the perimeter where Bulldog shooters found an array of opportunities for medium to long range jump shots.
Palisade's Zane Haas had the touch against the Panthers and his 24 points led all scorers in the game. He had seven points in the first quarter and finished with nine counters in the final stanza.
Delta found itself down, 22-14, at halftime and was within reach at 25-30 after three quarters of play. The Bulldogs fed Haas in the final period and rode his coattails to victory on his strong shooting night.
Delta junior Felipe Bedoy came off the bench in the second half to score all 11 of his team-high points with a pair of 3-point goals igniting a short-lived rally. Palisade's 20-9 run in the fourth quarter doomed the Panthers.
Thursday's contest against Grand Valley was a game regarded as key to Delta's league title hopes. The Panthers played as though it was important with a 32-19 first half advantage.
Senior John Ames, who had been absent in the scoring column in recent games, led Delta's first half charge with a trio of 3-pointers. Ames had three more treys in the third quarter and finished the game with a game-high 19 points. Kyle Mock cashed in 14 points and Bedoy collected another 11 points to give the Panthers three players in double digits.
Indra Griggs and Joe Garcia had seven points each for Grand Valley.
Delta played in Cedaredge on Jan. 29 and finishes the week in Craig with a 7:30 p.m. contest against Moffat County (2-3 and 4-10) on Feb. 1.