Rams rebound to rip Vail

Soroco erases halftime hole in comeback victory

Joel Reichenberger
Soroco girls basketball coach David Bruner celebrates a basket late in Tuesday's comeback win against Vail Christian. The Rams trailed by nine at halftime in the game, but won, 52-45.
Joel Reichenberger

— The league season wasn’t three games old, yet at halftime of Tuesday night’s Soroco High School girls basketball game, it all seemed to hang in the balance for the Rams.

The Western Slope Gore division is only seven teams deep but has three team vying for the top spot. After losing to one of the leaders Saturday at West Grand, Soroco trailed against another, Vail Christian, Tuesday night in Oak Creek.

The Rams answered in a big way, however, more than making up the deficit to earn a win, both thrilling and crucial, at home against Vail, 52-45.

Soroco trailed by nine at half but bounced back to score 20 in the fourth quarter and win.

“That’s the second time in a row we’ve been down by nine at half,” Soroco coach David Bruner said. “We handled it a lot better this time.”

By the Rams’ estimation, the difference was patience. They slowed down their pace in the second half and saw a significant drop in turnovers and a significant increase in field goal percentage and rebounding.

Soroco took the lead early in the fourth when Hayley Johnson broke down the floor on a fast break and DaKota Bruner put in an offensive rebound.

Bruner scored 15 of her team-high 17 points in the second half, and she followed up the go-ahead bucket with two more, creating a six-point lead.

“When we were down at half, we knew what had to be done to get back in it,” Peterson said. “We had to breathe and make the right decisions.”

If Soroco played too fast in the first half, Vail did so in the second.

“When you take a lot of quick first-pass shots, you get long rebounds and the ball comes out quickly,” Vail coach Doug Bruce said. “That opened up their running game. We weren’t efficient on offense and that cost us.”

For Soroco, Peterson scored 14 — 8 in the fourth quarter — and Jessica Rossi had 14.

Vail’s Jessie Hartley led all scorers, pouring in 20. Jessie Raitt had 11.

The outcome knots up the top of the division and ruined a chance Vail had to take a solid step ahead after its big victory last week against West Grand. The three teams now have all traded losses and each has one.

“West Grand, Soroco and us are about as tight as you can get,” Bruce said. “It’s a good league. It’s fun.”

Soroco, 7-2 and 2-1, next plays at home Saturday versus De Beque. Vail Christian, 6-3 and 2-1, plays at De Beque on Friday.

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253, email or follow him on Twitter @JReich9

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