Soroco girls blow by Mancos to reach regional title game |

Soroco girls blow by Mancos to reach regional title game

— It certainly wasn’t easy, but the Soroco High School girls basketball team is now just one win away from landing a state tournament bid after knocking off Mancos Friday afternoon in the 2A Region 3 tournament.

The Rams were able to shrug off severe early foul trouble to down the Bluejays, 74-60, advancing them to Saturday’s regional finals.

Trying to attack Mancos early with full-court-pressure defense, Soroco suddenly had five of its top players with two fouls apiece before the end of the first quarter. Still, the Rams held an 18-14 lead after the first eight minutes and a 36-32 advantage at halftime.

“We pressured the ball early, and we got in so much foul trouble,” Soroco coach David Bruner said. “I had to back off a little bit from the full court stuff. The girls did a good job adjusting to that.”

The foul trouble opened the door for all 11 Rams to see playing time in each quarter. The third quarter proved to be huge as Soroco poured in 21 points en route to the double-digit victory.

Bruner said his team’s overall conditioning finally prevailed against the Bluejays, who got gassed down the stretch.

Senior Jessica Rossi — one of the players with two early fouls — had zero points in the first quarter but ended up leading Soroco with 24 when it was all said and done. Bruner said newly named senior starter Kellen Garrity played the best game of her high school career, pitching in 15 points. Kali Constine came off the bench to drop in 10 more for the Rams.

“Almost everybody scored,” Bruner said. “It was a great team effort.”

The victory makes seniors Rossi, Garrity, Hayley Johnson, Leah Walorski and Laramie Parker tied for the winningest class in school history — 61 games in all. Not only can they stand alone as arguably the best Rams girls basketball class ever with a win Saturday, but they can also punch their ticket to CSU-Pueblo, the site of the 2A state basketball tournament.

Soroco will play now Paonia in the regional finals starting at 2 p.m. in Grand Junction. Paonia knocked off the Rams just one week ago in district play, 51-34.

To reach Ben Ingersoll, call 970-871-4204, email or follow him on Twitter @BenMIngersoll

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