Soroco girls’ stellar season comes to a close in loss to Paonia
Steamboat Springs — Paonia High School basketball proved to be the thorn in the side of the Soroco Rams this weekend at the 2A regional tournament.
The day after the Eagles’ boys squad ended Soroco’s season in convincing fashion, they doubled it up in the girls game — this time with a regional title on the line Saturday afternoon.
Paonia slowed things down and methodically took the Rams girls out of their game, beating Soroco, 56-38, to end their season. The Rams finished this winter with a 19-4 record, the second most wins in a single season for the girls basketball program.
The Eagles jumped out to a 15-7 first-quarter lead. And when Soroco looked like it would only be down by a few possessions just before halftime, Paonia poured in some timely buckets to lead at the break, 29-18.
“Up to that point it had been anywhere from a seven- to eigh-point game,” Soroco coach David Bruner said. “I thought we were playing pretty well.”
But the Eagles kept pressing, and the 11-point lead swelled to 14 and eventually 18 when the final buzzer sounded. Senior Jessica Rossi led the team in scoring with 16 points, and junior Briana Peterson pitched in 13 more.
The anomaly for Soroco — a team that loves the run-and-gun style of offense and is often hot-handed from 3-point land — is that the Rams didn’t make a single 3-pointer in the regional title game.
“That made a big difference, too,” Bruner said. “I imagine we shot around 12 to 15 3-pointers, we just didn’t make any of them.”
The loss ends the high school basketball careers of the team’s five seniors — Rossi, Hayley Johnson, Leah Walorski, Laramie Parker and Kellen Garrity. They are a class that has amassed a 61-25 record.
“They meant a lot to the program,” Bruner said. “All five of those girls have really matured and become great young ladies. They’ll be really successful in life in whatever they decide to do.”
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STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — After almost four years of providing service to the community as a standalone, full-service emergency department, Steamboat Emergency Center will end its operations April 30.