Soroco dominates in win over rival, Hayden |

Soroco High School girls basketball dominates in win over rival, Hayden

Soroco senior Chloe Veilleux charges up to the basket against the Tigers on Friday, Jan. 18, at Hayden High School. (Photo by Leah Vann)

HAYDEN — The Soroco High School girls basketball team eliminated any chance of an upset by their arch rival, Hayden High School, on Friday night.

The Rams (10-2, 3-1) were a clear favorite over the Tigers as one of the top teams in the Class 1A/2A Western Slope League, currently No. 11 in the RPI standings, while the Tigers (5-8, 1-4) were merely looking for a a step towards a winning record. Although the Tigers put up a fight early in the first quarter, the Rams ultimately showed why they are one of the top teams in the state in a 64-25 victory.

“I don’t know if it was a big win, truthfully, people think it’s a rivalry game, but they haven’t beat us in seven years, so it’s hard to consider it a rivalry game,” Soroco head coach David Bruner said. “We didn’t play real well in the first half, but second half they got the point and played a lot better second half. But to compete with the top tier of teams, we have to play better the whole game.”

An invigorating overtime win by the Tigers’ JV boys, 49-47, set the stage for a gym of hopefuls as the varsity Tigers took the floor.

Hayden junior Joey Deckler scored all seven points for the Tigers in the first quarter as Tigers held a lead for several minutes before the Rams could sink their shots. Soroco senior Chloe Veilleux rattled off seven points and before the Tigers knew it, they were down 12-7.

Soroco’s defense and fast pace is what makes it lethal. The Tigers couldn’t find time to get to the other side of the court. For every step the Tigers took, the Rams were two steps ahead to intercept the pass or grab the next rebound. As the opportunities for the Tigers diminished, so did their scoring. The Rams held the Tigers to five points in the second quarter and took advantage of the opportunities they made to extend a 25-12 lead at halftime.

“You have to play full-court defense to get the game going in the pace that we need it to go.” Bruner said.

Hayden senior Paige Barnes blocks Soroco senior Grace Olinger’s shot as she charges toward the basket on Friday, Jan. 18, at Hayden High School. (Photo by Leah Vann)

The Rams went on a rampage in the third, scoring 34 points to the Tigers’ seven and continued that pace in the fourth quarter to close out the game 64-25.

Veilleux finished with 26 points, Soroco senior Kayla Wille had 13 points and Kayedence Bruner had 10.

“It’s just been the last three games; we’ve played slow in the first half,” Bruner said. “The last eight games we played unbelievable in the first half. We need to get back to where we were before Christmas break.”

The Rams face North Park (7-2, 2-1) at home and Hayden will travel to Plateau Valley (9-2, 2-1) on Saturday, Jan. 19.

To reach Leah Vann, call 970-871-4253, email or follow her on Twitter @LVann_Sports.

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