There’s value to be found in defeats for the Cedaredge boys basketball team.

The Bruins fell behind early and couldn’t bounce back during a 71-37 loss to Caprock Academy last Friday in Grand Junction.

With two key players out and early foul trouble, the Bruins struggled to keep pace with an experience Eagles squad.

“They’re well-coached, experienced and did some things we’re not really used to,” Cedaredge coach Lane Varner said. “That foul trouble early really tested our bench. They’re a good team, too. All five of their guys are returning starters. When we tried to come back, we pressed them a little bit. They were able to break out press and get some easier looks off it.”

The foul trouble may have tested the bench, but it’s a test that will pay off down the line. Varner said varsity minutes against a quality opponent will pay off against opponents later in the season.

“We’re going to need these experiences for later in the season,” Varner said. “It’ll pay off for them to get valuable reps and meaningful minutes in a varsity game.”

The Bruins next contest comes on Jan. 7 when they host Hayden at 6 p.m. They also host Plateau Valley the following day at 3:30 p.m.

In the meantime, after a busy first month of the season, Varner said he’s happy his team has a well-deserved break.

“Well, the first thing we’re going to do is get these guys eight or nine days off to get some rest,” Varner said. “They’ve played a lot of basketball and they’ve played really, really, really hard for me. Some of them are dinged up, so some rest should help them heal so they can come back. Once we get everybody back, we’ll get a few good practices in and get ready for the back half of the season. We’ll be ready to get after it.”

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