Steamboat Springs There was disappointment in the moment Saturday, but Soroco High School girls basketball coach David Bruner said that eventually gave way to an appreciation.
His Rams rocketed toward the end of the season with big-time dreams — plans to make the regional tournament and maybe even state. They ran into a brick wall in the district tournament, however, and a 54-53 loss Saturday against Rangely in the third-place game there ended the team’s season.
“I can’t complain,” Bruner said. “These seniors were 73-20 in high school, so there’s not much complaining going on. We’ve got a great program. Our kids compete every time they’re on the court. That’s all you can ask for.”
Soroco had only two losses entering the weekend, but lost to two league foes it had already beaten. Friday, it was Meeker with the win in the semifinals. Saturday, it was Rangely, which Soroco beat 60-50 in January.
The top-three teams from each district advance to regionals, so with the loss, the Rams are out.
They gave Saturday’s game a heck of a shot.
They trailed throughout the game and were down by six with two minutes remaining. They charged back to take the lead, however, 52-50, but couldn’t hang on. Missed free throws and shots down the stretch cost the team. At the same time, Rangely took advantage.
DaKota Bruner finished her high school career with a 16-point game. Morgan George had 13, and Chloe Veilleux added 12.
“Our height caught up with us some this weekend,” David Bruner said, considering the guard-exclusive lineup his team played with throughout the season. “They out-rebounded us in the last two minutes and scored a lot more points in the paint. That was only one of the factors, though. There were many. The height caught up with us. Being beat up some caught up with us. We were scratching and clawing, but we just didn’t make the plays at the end of the game.”"
Soroco finished the season 18-4.
To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253, email jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @JReich9