I think it’s safe to say Arapahoe and Cherry Creek don’t like each other. This game had all the makings of a classic Warrior-Bruin battle – back and forth action, action away from the ball, players getting into it with other players, players (Cherry Creek) getting into it with fans (Arapahoe), and a furious finish.
Creek opens the scoring with a back door cut and layup. 0-2. Nikko gets a steal and starts the fast break, finding a streaking Bobby who flys to the rim and is fouled. He hits 1 of 2. 1-2. Josh drives the lane and feeds Brendan underneath. He draws a foul, and goes 1 of 2 from the line. 2-2. Josh gets a steal and goes coast to coast for a layup. 4-2. A Creek bucket inside ties it up. 4-4. Brendan responds with a turnaround jumper. 6-4. Creek rolls off 4 straight to retake the lead. 6-8. Nikko drives the lane to tie it with a layup. 8-8. Two Creek free throws cap the scoring and the 1st quarter ends with the Warriors down 2, 8-10.
In the 2nd, the Warriors make a concerted effort to keep Creek out of the lane, where they had most of their success in the 1st. Jake nabs an offensive rebound, drawing a foul. He hits 1 of 2. 9-10. Preston grabs a defensive rebound and goes coast to coast for a layup. 11-10. A Creek layup puts them back on top. 11-12. Preston draws a foul and goes 1 for 2 from the line, then Creek hits a jumper. 12-14. Creek attempts several 3 pointers in the 2nd, but they are all off the mark. Tom earns free throws after getting fouled on a defensive rebound. He hits the first but misses the 2nd. 13-14. As the clock winds down, Bobby drains a 3 pointer, and puts Arapahoe ahead at the half, 16-14.
The Warriors open the 2nd half with the same defensive resolve as the 2nd quarter, getting stop after stop, limiting Creek to outside shots that become defensive rebounds. Preston gets things going on the offensive end with a foul line jumper for 2. 18-14. The next time down, Bobby drives the lane, double pumps while he hangs in the air, and gets the layup to fall. 20-14. He then gets a steal and goes coast to coast, but is fouled on his layup attempt. He hits 1 of 2 free throws. 21-14. Preston drives, fakes a pass and glides in for a layup and 1. 24-14. Creek finally gets on the scoreboard with a 3, which ends up being their only points of the period. Josh establishes position down low, gets the entry pass and spins to the hoop for 2. 26-17. He follows that up with a drive and kick out to an open Grant, who calmly buries 3 pointer. After three, the Warriors lead 29-17. Great defensive quarter.
Josh opens the 4th with a drive and spin to the hoop for a bucket. 31-17. Creek gets an inside score. 31-19. Then, away from the ball, a Creek player gets in Nikko’s face and shoves him out of bounds. The Creek player gets hit with a Technical Foul, but Tom cannot convert on the free throw attempts. Bobby follows up with a drive and a foul, and he sinks both freebies. 33-19. CC converts again inside for 2. 33-21. Bobby is fouled in the backcourt. He hits the front end of the 1 and 1, but cannot convert the 2nd. 34-21. A Creek 3 shows they still have a lot of fight left in them cutting the lead to 10. 34-24. The Warriors go into a slow down offense in an attempt to kill the clock. Josh drives and scores on a reverse layup. 36-24. Then Creek tears off a 12-2 run, with only 2 Preston free throws to show for Arapahoe, and cut the lead to 2 (38-36) with 10 seconds to play. Bobby gets fouled on the inbound, and makes both free throws to give Arapahoe a little breathing room. Creek hits a 3 pointer to draw within one, but the clock expires, despite the clock operator's attempt to freeze time and extend the game, and the Warriors move on to the next round, winning 40-39.
Arapahoe at Eaglecrest
In their previous meeting, the Warriors were able to handle the Eaglecrest press, resulting in a win at home. They will need to do the same in order to come out of the Eagle’s Nest with a W. Arapahoe plays tough early on, getting a driving layup by Bobby and a reverse layup from Brendan, while Eaglecrest nails their first 2 3 point attempts. 4-6. Then Eaglecrest dominates play with their pressure D and roll off 9 straight points. 4-15. Brendan scores inside to get it to 6-15. Jake is fouled on an offensive rebound and putback attempt, and he hits both free throws, followed by a Preston 3, but Eaglecrest dominates the rest of the quarter, and the Warriors find themselves trailing 11-21 after 1.
The Raptors open the 2nd with 3 straight scores until Nikko drains a 3 from the top of the circle. 14-27. Preston cuts into the lead with his 3. 17-27. Brendan gets an offensive rebound and putback. 19-27. The boys step it up on defense and shut down Eaglecrest the rest of the quarter, until the Raptors hit a 3 at the buzzer. At the half, the Warriors trail by 11, 19-30.
The 2nd half opens with the Warriors looking to get on track offensively. The work the ball around patiently, finally finding Jake inside for 2. 21-30. Josh gets a steal and goes coast to coast. 23-30, followed by another forced turnover by the D. Josh breaks the Eaglecrest press and goes to the rim for the score. 25-30. The Raptors respond with 8 quick points to take back momentum. 25-38. A 3 by Tom breaks their streak, but they again blitz the Warriors, getting baskets on two back door cuts. 28-42. Josh responds with a short jumper in the lane. 30-42. Eaglecrest answers with a steal and fast break layup. 30-44. Josh again connects with a short jumper in the lane, but Eaglecrest again gets a steal and fasbreak layup to maintain the lead. 32-46. However, Arapahoe closes out the 3rd strong – Brendan gets his reverse layup to fall while being fouled, but can’t get the free throw to go down. Then Josh fights for an offensive rebound. He follows with a hoop and is fouled. He hits his freebie to make it 37-46 at the end of 3.
Two Eaglecrest free throws get the scoring in the 4th underway. Grant then pops a 3. 40-48. The Raptors roll off 7 straight points before Grant hits another 3 ball. 43-55. Eaglecrest hits a jumper, then Brendan scores on a baseline drive. 45-57. He scores again inside to make it 47-57. Amidst a 9 point Raptor flurry, Bobby hits 1 of 2 free throws. Then Preston pops a 3, and Bobby goes 1 of 2 at the free throw line, but the Warriors can’t complete the comeback, and fall 52-66.
Sophomore Warriors vs. Mullen Mustangs
The Sophomores get home court for their rematch with the Mustangs, and race out to an 11-2 start. Josh gets things started by popping a jumper from the top of the key, followed by Jake scoring inside, a Preston 3 and then driving for 2. After Brendan gets a baseline drive and reverse layup to fall, the Warriors shooting goes cold, settling for unsuccessful outside shots against the Mullen zone. Mullen gets a 3 and an inside score to cut into the lead, ending the 1st quarter 11-7.
Mullen closes the gap to start the 2nd with an offensive rebound and putback. 11-9. Grant one ups them with his own offensive rebound, conversion, and 1. 14-9. Another offensive rebound for Mullen gets them an easy hoop. 14-11. Josh gets into the lane and banks one in. 16-11. The next time down, he drives again and scores. 18-11. After a 3 point play for Mullen, Grant feeds Brendan who’s all alone under the basket for a layup. 20-14. Mullen closes the scoring with a drive, and the Warriors lead 20-16 at the half.
Obviously not happy with their performance and the pace of the game, the Sophomore Warriors come out of the break fired up and intense. Starting on D, they pressure the ball and don’t give up an inch of real estate to Mullen ball handlers, resulting in a turnover. Nikko nails a baseline jumper to get things going on offense. 22-16. Mullen gets a 3 at the other end, but Kiran answers with a corner 3 of his own. 25-19. Mullen scores 5 straight points to cut the lead to 1, 25-24. And then the Warriors take off. Brendan corrals an offensive rebound and is fouled. He hits 1 of 2. 26-24. Tom snares another offensive rebound and draws a foul. He nails both freebies. 28-24. Jake steals a pass and goes the other way, converting his layup and drawing a foul. His free throw makes it 31-24. Tom blocks a Mullen shot, and the Warriors race the other way, where Preston drains a 3. 34-24. Jake muscles an offensive rebound, but as he comes down with the ball, a Mullen defender tries to tie him up. As the whistle blows, the Mullen player falls and grabs Jake, taking him down too. Jake slams his head on the ground, earning the Mullen player a technical foul. Preston hits 1 of 2 attempts, and the Warriors complete a 10-0 run to end the 3rd, 35-24.
Mullen opens the 4th with a steal and hoop. 35-26. Josh drives at the other end and earns two free throws, making 1 of 2. 36-26. Then, he gets a steal and goes coast to coast on back to back possessions. He converts the first into an easy layup, and is fouled on the 2nd. He goes 1 for 2 from the charity stripe. 39-26. Kiran follows that with a 3 to extend the lead. 42-26. Mullen ends the run with a hoop inside, but Preston starts another Warrior run with a shake-n-bake drive from the top of the key for a layup and foul. 45-28. Nikko drives and dishes to Brendan for 2. 47-25. Then Kiran and Brendan team up to go Top Gun on the Mustangs. Kiran spots up at the top of the 3 point arc and fakes a shot. Instead he lobs a no-look pass over the Mullen D to a wide open Brendan under the basket. As two Mullen defenders leap from behind in anticipation of a blocked shot, Brendan hits the brakes and the Mustangs fly right by, and Brendan lays it in. Nice shot, Mav! 48-26. On their next possession, Kiran is fouled and earns 2 free throws, in the double bonus. He hits 1 of 2. 50-28. Bobby hits 2 free throws to make it 52-28 with a 10-0 run. Mullen finally ends that with 5 straight points. 52-33. Bobby gets one more free throw down the stretch, as does Mullen, and the Warriors secure the win 53-34.
1/29 Sophomore Warriors vs. Grandview Wolves
As the season begins to wind down, teams in the Centennial league are jockeying for position for the post season tournament. This is a must win game for the Arapahoe at home to stay in the top 3 seeds. Protect this house Warriors.
Preston gets this started with a dribble drive, finishing at the hoop for 2. Grandview ties it up at the other end with a score from inside. 2-2. Bobby then drives the lane with a dish to Brendan for 2. 4-2. GV again answers inside. 4-4. Josh pops a jumper from up top. 6-4. After a defensive stop, Josh again gets free and nails a 3. Uh, oh. He’s got that look in his eyes. This one’s going to be fun to watch. 9-4. Bobby drives again – this time drawing contact and goes to the free throw line, hitting 1 of 2. 10-4. Momentum swings the Wolves way as they score off an offensive rebound and a steal leading to a breakaway. 10-8. Bobby ends the run with a drive and dish to Jake. 10-8. GV closes out the quarter with a 3 to make it 12-11. The Warriors just can’t seem to pull away.
Turn up the offensive octane for the 2nd quarter. Bobby corrals a defensive rebound and spots Mitchell streaking up court. Bobby’s long pass is spot on, and Mitch lays it. 14-11. GV hits 1 of 2 free throws before Bobby draws a foul and converts both of his. 16-12. Next time up, Bobby is fouled bringing the ball upcourt. We’ve barely started the 2nd quarter and Arapahoe is in the 1 and 1. Bobby misses the front end. Preston drives and is fouled, but he misses his free throw as well. Gotta make those freebies Warriors. Bobby is fouled again at midcourt. Now they’re in the double bonus – 2 shots every time they are fouled the rest of the half. Bobby makes 1 of 2. 17-12. Brendan works the high post and feeds Jake down low for 2. 19-12. Just like in the 1st quarter, just as it appears the Warriors are starting to pull away, GV takes the momentum. They score on back to back 3 pointers to make it 19-18. Josh fights back with a drive AND1 play to make it 22-18. Jake gets a block and Arapahoe goes the other way. Josh drives and draws a foul, but he can’t hit the free throws. GV nails a 3. 22-21. Jake gets another block on a GV drive. GV’s ball out of bounds. On the inbound, a GV shooter gets open and nails another 3 for their first lead of the game. 22-24. At the other end, Josh answers with a big time 3 – SWISH. 25-24. On the next possession, he drives, spins and lofts a floater that drops for 2. 27-24. A defensive stop gives Arapahoe the ball with 10 seconds left. Nikko pushes the pace, sprinting into the front court. As GV defenders converge on him, he drills a pass to Tom, wide open in the corner. Tom launches his 3, and finds nothing but the bottom of the net. Arapahoe leads 30-24 at the half. But the Wolves are still lurking.
Grandview comes out in the 2nd half showing their resolve. GV gets an inside turnaround, no look hook shot (seriously?!?!) to fall and a foul. The free throw makes it 30-27. Bobby responds with a drive. His shot won’t fall but Brendan cleans the offensive glass for the score. 32-27. Next possession, the Wolves unveil their zone defense. The Warriors probe for an opening, patiently moving the ball. They find Kiran in a seam unguarded and he nails a 3. 35-27. No more zone for GV. However, other than a Josh driving layup, GV dominates the rest of the quarter, scoring 18 points down the stretch to take an 8 point lead into the 4th. 37-45.
This can’t be happening, can it? We just beat this team by 11 points at GV a few weeks ago. We can’t allow them to beat us on our home court. The fans are getting restless. Luckily, the Warriors come out cool, calm and collected. They look ready to roll. As my inside source told me after the game – “We had them right where we wanted them.”
The offense patiently moves the ball until they find Kiran open. Again he nails a 3 pointer. 40-45. On the next possession, Arapahoe gets an inbound play beneath their offensive basket. All of the on court players fake like they are running to the other end of the court. In the confusion, Mitch stops on a dime and cuts back to the basket where he receives the inbound pass and lays it in for an easy 2. 42-45. Grandview scores on a fast break. 42-47. Josh answers with a corner 3 ball. 45-47. Bobby, not to be outdone by Jake, who’s at least a foot taller than he is, rises on defense to swat a Wolves layup attempt. At the other end, Jake hits the offensive glass for a put back to tie it at 47. Kiran makes a steal at the defensive end. The offense sets up and Kiran gets free for another 3 attempt. This one is too hard, but Jake battles for the rebound and is fouled. He can’t hit the free throws, so the score remains 47-47. GV retakes the lead with a 3. 47-50. Jake nabs another offensive rebound and draws a foul. He nails both free throws this time to make it 49-50. On back to back possessions, GV goes 1 for 2 at the foul line, then Mitch gets an offensive rebound and kicks it out to Bobby, open for a 3. It’s GOOD! 52-52. GV retakes the lead with a hoop and a foul for a three point play. 52-55. Arapahoe comes back as Jake rebounds his own miss and puts it in. 54-55. On the defensive end, Bobby boxes his man out on a shot attempt and is fouled. He hits both ends of his 1 and 1, and Arapahoe has the lead for the first time in a long time, 56-55. On the next possession, Arapahoe finds Preston open in the corner. He calmly launches a 3. It’s GOOD! 59-55. Bobby, still doing his power forward impression (rebounding, boxing out, swatting shots), skies to block another GV shot attempt in the lane. Going the other way, Josh breaks down his defender, drives the lane and drops a beautiful pass to Jake for an easy layup. 61-55. GV launches a 3 to try to cut the lead. They miss and Jake (I Own the Boards Tonight) pulls down the defensive rebound and gets fouled. He makes both free throws. 63-55 GV gets to the line and makes 1 of 2. 63-56. Josh is fouled trying to run out the clock. He steps to the line and makes both attempts.. A Grandview 2 at the end caps the scoring, and the Sophomore Warriors storm back for a 65-58 win.
Great comeback boys. That was fun to watch, and totally worth the price of admission.
1/27 Arapahoe Sophomore Warriors vs. Cherokee Trail Cougars
In a rematch with the league leading Cougars, the Arapahoe Warriors enter the contest looking to avenge a loss in their previous game against CT. This time, the Warriors have home court advantage, and a healthy Bobby.
CT comes out in their full court press. Expecting this, the Warriors are not rattled. In response, Arapahoe employs an aggressive half court D, and keeps CT from getting any easy opportunities. After several empty possessions for both team, Bobby breaks the ice with a drive down the lane, drawing a foul. He hits 1 of 2 free throws. 1-0. The tough half court D causes a turnover. Bobby leads the fast break as the Warriors play tic tac toe; Bobby to Tom to Josh, for an easy layup. 3-0. CT answers with 2 inside hoops and a steal for a breakaway to take the lead. 3-6. Josh then connects on a short jumper after a sweet give and go with Brendan. 5-6. CT tries to press, however Bobby breaks through and drives the lane, but he can’t get his twisting attempt to fall. CT gets another inside score. 5-8. Josh drives, but his attempt won’t fall for him either. CT scores again inside. 5-10. Josh answers with a drive and jumper in the lane. The first quarter ends with the Warriors trailing 7-10.
The 2nd quarter opens with CT looking to enforce their style of play, which means create turnovers and get out on the break. They race to 6 quick points and lead 7-16. Bobby ends the run by blocking a layup attempt on D, and going coast to coast and getting fouled. He hits 1 of 2 to make it 8-16. CT quickly extends its lead to 8-22 by snagging every defensive rebound and getting out in transition for easy hoops. Josh breaks the streak by drawing a foul on a drive and hitting 2 from the charity stripe. 10-22. After 2 CT free throws, Bobby drives and kicks it outside to Kiran for a 3. 13-24. CT gets another basket to double up on the Warriors, whose shooting went cold and struggled to stop CT’s transition game. They trail 13-26 at the half.
The Warriors open up the 2nd half with intense half court defense, looking to slow down CT and get back into the game. Grant drives and converts in traffic to open the scoring. 15-26. Bobby makes a steal and goes the other way, weaving into the lane for a score, enduring lots of contact, but does not get the call. 17-26. On their next possession, Mitch feeds Brendan on the low block. He converts to cut the lead to 7, 19-26. CT scores 3 straight baskets inside before the Warriors take back the momentum. Jake starts things off with a big block on the defensive end to thwart a CT attempt. The next time on defensive, the D gets a turnover, resulting in Josh driving and getting fouled. He makes 1 of 2. 20-32. On the next possession, he muscles into the lane and connects on a short jumper. 22-32. Just when it looks like the Warriors are set to make a run, CT unleashes its OR offense – OR standing for Offensive Rebound. They throw up shot after shot, hardly any of which look like they have a chance of going in, but their big men crash the offensive glass and get easy put backs. They roll off 9 straight to end the quarter. Arapahoe is down 22-41 entering the 4th.
The tempo slows considerably as Arapahoe limits CT to 5 points in the 4th. The Warriors get a score from Bobby after he makes a steal and goes coast to coast. His next drive draws a foul and he nails both free throws. Grant finishes things off for Arapahoe with a 3 pointer, followed by a nice stop and pop from the foul line for 2. However, it’s not enough to catch CT, as the Sophomore Warriors fall 31-46.
1/22 Arapahoe Sophs at Cherry Creek
High school basketball. The season is filled with highs and lows. Sometime you don’t know how a team is going to perform on any given day. They are teenagers after all. Tonight, the Sophomore Warriors faced the Cherry Creek Bruins. Their previously scheduled tilt was cancelled due to weather, so this is the first time these two teams face off this season. Let me make this very clear for anyone who was not at the game – the Warriors were pumped and ready for this one from the get-go.
Cherry Creek was pumped up for this one as well, and their physical style of play was on display early as they score the first 4 points of the game. Josh gets things going for the Warriors with a drive and drop to Brendan who draws a foul from the Bruin’s brute of a big man. He hits 1 of 2 free throws to get Arapahoe on the scoreboard. 1-4. CC gets another bucket inside at the other end. 1-6. Josh finds Tom cutting through the lane and he swoops to the basket, lofting a lefty runner layup over CC’s big man. 3-6. CC responds with a hoop, then Bobby drives the lane for a layup. 5-8. After a defensive stop, Josh drains a 3 to tie the score, 8-8. Another score by CC puts them ahead again, but Josh then scores on a breakaway, followed by a Tom steal and layup. 12-10. CC scores the next 4 points to retake the lead, 12-14. As the clock winds down, Arapahoe moves the ball until Preston shakes free for a 3 point attempt. He nails it with a few seconds left, and CC cannot get a shot off as time expires. Warriors lead after a tight fought quarter, 15-14.
As the 2nd quarter opens, it is clear that the Warriors are turning up the intensity, and it’s evident with the great defense on display. Nikko gets thing rolling with a driving layup. 17-14. Mitch makes a steal and feeds Tom who hits a short jumper. 19-14. Tom then drives and draws a foul, hitting both free throws to increase the lead to 21-14. CC gets on the scoreboard with a free throw. 21-15. CC gets inside buckets on successive possessions to draw within 2, 21-19. Brendan established position on the low block and receives a pass. He draws foul #3 on CC’s big man, who earns a seat on the bench. Brendan hits 1 of 2 free throws. 22-19. On the next Warrior possession, Josh fights off 3 CC defenders for an offensive rebound and follow. 24-19. After a CC free throw, Brendan gets a putback off an offensive rebound. 26-20. The defense causes a turnover, and Kiran leads a fastbreak, feeding Josh with a cross court bounce pass for an easy layup. 28-20. A CC 3 cuts into the lead, but as the clock winds down, Bobby gets loose down the lane and gets his driving layup to fall as time expires. Arapahoe leads 30-23 at the half.
The tempo slows considerably in the 3rd quarter as Arapahoe’s full court press starts to exact its toll on CC’s offense. While not shutting them down completely, the press is throwing CC off their game as they battle to advance the ball and get into their offensive sets. After a CC score, Grant drives and gets fouled, hitting both freebies. 32-25. He follows on the next possession with a rainbow 3. 35-25. CC goes on a 4 point run, but Brendan responds with a turnaround jumper. 37-30. After another CC score, Josh lets the clock wind down before starting his drive. He launches a floater off the glass and in as the buzzer sounds. 39-32 Arapahoe.
The intensity builds as the 4th quarter opens. Bobby pops a 3 pointer from the top of the key. 42-32. CC hits a 3 of their own, looking to make a come back. After a CC rebound, Bobby gets a steal in the back court and flies to the hoop. He drives left and spins back to the right, but the CC defender wraps his arms around him and throws him to the ground. He calmly sinks 1 of 2 free throws to push the lead to 9, 43-32. CC is clearly starting to unravel as Arapahoe continues to apply pressure at both ends of the court. CC tries to press on defense to get the ball back, but Josh breaks the half court pressure, slicing through three defenders for a layup. 45-35. After a defensive stop, Josh again breaks the pressure and lays it in. 47-35. Another stops leads to another Arapahoe offensive set. Bobby drives the lane where he finds CC’s big man waiting for him. The big man tries to take his head off with a wild swing ( a swing and a miss, luckily), fouling out of the game. Bobby nails both attempts to push the lead to 14, 49-35. Tom is fouled in the frontcourt and nails both ends of the 1 and 1. 51-35. CC gets a hoop and tries to steal the inbound. Bobby is fouled on the steal attempt, and the CC player complains about the call, earning a technical foul. He continues complaining and gesturing at the ref all the way to the bench. At this point, a fellow parent asked “Why do other teams keep getting technical fouls in all of our wins?” Very good question, but one I cannot answer. Preston hit3 3 of the 4 technical free throws to close out the scoring. The Sophomore Warriors earn one of their most impressive wins of the season, limiting CC to 5 points in the final quarter. Final score 54-37.
Arapahoe Warriors Boys Sophomore 2015-16 Schedule & Results
1/20 Arapahoe Sophs at Smoky Hill
The Arapahoe Sophomore team enters their rematch with Smoky Hill looking to rebound from their loss against Overland in their last game. Mitch comes out strong with an inside bucket to get things going. 2-0. Tom follows that up with a steal, going coast to coast for a layup. 4-0. After a Smoky Hill score, Mitch finds Tom cutting down the lane for another easy 2. 6-2. A Smoky Hill 3 cuts the lead to one, but Brendan scores inside to make it 8-5. After that, the Warriors shooting went cold, and Smoky Hill battles back to take the lead. Arapahoe trails 8-9 at the end of the 1st.
Smoky Hill comes out in a zone defense to start the 2nd, and Preston finds an opening, draining a 3 from the corner. 11-9. Arapahoe does not get back on D and a Buffalo gets behind them for an easy layup. 11-11. Arapahoe responds at the other end as Preston drives for a layup. Then Kiran and David combine on a nice give and go with Kiran getting a layup. 15-11. Nikko is fouled as he makes a steal and hits the first of a one and one, but misses the 2nd. 16-11. Again, the defense does not get back and a cherry picking Smoky Hill player scores easily. Arapahoe flips the intensity switch at both ends of the court. Josh drives and gets a floater to drop for 2. 18-13. The D causes a turnover and Tom starts the fast break, finding Bobby who finishes with a tough layup in traffic. Mitch puts an exclamation point on the quarter as he fights three Buffs for a rebound and gets fouled. He cannot convert his free throw, but statement made. The half ends with the Warriors leading 20-13.
This team plays best when they are focused on defense and apply pressure. On the first Buff possession of the 2nd half, Bobby sets the tone as he comes across the lane to block a Smoky Hill layup attempt. The defense applies full court pressure and causes a travel on Smoky Hill. At the other end Grant gets open in the right corner and launches a 3 – SWISH. 23-13. After a SH score, Grant spots up in the right corner again. Again he nails it. 26-15. SH scores 2, but guess who gets open for a 3 point attempt in the corner? Grant nails his 3rd trey in a row for a 29-17 lead. Grant, you own that corner. SH then goes on a 5 point run, cutting into the lead, 29-22. Arapahoe responds with a run of its own. Nikko drives and dishes to Jake for a hoop. Josh scores off a give and go with Jake. 33-22. Jake gets a put back off an offensive rebound. 35-22. As SH brings the ball up court, Josh meets the point guard at the center circle, and pokes the ball away. He takes off towards the basket and rises up for a dunk attempt. What? He loses control of the ball at the rim, but it goes straight up and falls through for 2. We’ll count that as the first official dunk of the season. Jake caps the scoring with a spin into the lane and Arapahoe takes a 39-25 lead into the 4th.
We open the 4th quarter with Arapahoe employing a motion offense to slow down the tempo and kill the clock. Josh drives and drops a pass to Jake for an easy 2. 41-25. SH scores on back to back 3’s and have visions of a comeback. 41-31. But then Josh steals the ball and passes ahead to Tom, alone for a layup. 43-31. A SH player earns a T for complaining to the official. As Preston nails both free throws, the SH player slams a chair on the bench and is assessed a 2nd technical. Preston hits 2 more free throws to extend the lead to 47-31. Possession Arapahoe and they take advantage as Josh spins into the lane for a score. 49-31. Grant nails another 3, Bobby hits two free throws, and Preston caps the scoring with 4 more free throws down the stretch as the Warriors get a dominating road win, 58-39.
1/16 vs. Overland Trailblazers
In a rematch from before the holiday break, the Sophomore Warriors host the Overland Trailblazers. Overland opens with 2 quick buckets, but Josh gets Arapahoe on the scoreboard with a steal and goes coast to coast for a layup. After a Trailblazer basket and one free throw, Josh answers with another fast break hoop. 4-7. Overland runs off the next 6 points until Nikko drives baseline and drops an assist to Mitch for a layup. 6-13. Another 5 point run for Overland, and the first quarter ends with Arapahoe down 6-18.
As the Warriors discovered in the first matchup, the Trailblazers have their own version of DeRon Davis, Overland’s varsity star big man. Mini D takes over in the 2nd with two quick inside scores. Bobby then breaks the Overland press and feeds Brendan, who draws a foul. He hits both free throws to make it 8-22. Overland converts 2 free throws, then Preston drains a corner 3. 11-24. Overland scores the next five points, but Kiran breaks the run with 2 free throws. Overland converts three free throws, then Nikko hits one of two. Mitch muscles a defensive rebound in traffic and outlets to Nikko who gets the bucket on the fast break. 16-31. David gets an offensive follow for 2, but the Warriors find themselves down at halftime. 18-34.
The Warriors come out fighting in the 3rd as Josh drives baseline and drops a dime to Jake for a score. After two Overland scores, Bobby feeds Jake in the lane for another hoop. 22-36. Arapahoe’s D then gets a turnover but they cannot turn it into points. Overland scores the next 4 points, but then Brendan draws an intentional foul, and hits 1 of 2 free throws. The Warriors maintain possession, and Bobby slips into the lane for a deuce. 25-40. Kevin responds to an Overland score with 2 free throws. 27-42. Good defensive effort this quarter keeps Arapahoe within striking distance.
Overland opens the 4th with a trey. 27-45. Kevin scores on a baseline drive and sweet reverse layup. 29-45. Overland goes on a 5-0 run until Bobby ends the streak with a steal and fast break. He cannot get his driving layup to fall, but Nikko corrals the offensive rebound and lays it in. 31-50. Overland’s Mini D earns a 3 point play plus another score. Tom scores Arapahoe’s final points with an offensive rebound and put back, but the Warriors fall at home with a final score of 33-56.
1/13 Arapahoe vs Eaglecrest
The Arapahoe Sophomore Warriors face the Eaglecrest Raptors for the first time this season. Lat year’s two matchups ended in the Raptor’s favor both times, and they were not very close. The Warriors are looking for a better showing this time around.
Eaglecrest began the game with their matchup zone that plays to their strength – they are quick and athletic with good size as well, to create pressure and throw opponents off their game. Early on, the zone gives Arapahoe problems, and they struggle to get into an offensive rhythm until Bobby, the shortest player on the court, gets things started with a block at the defensive end, leading to Josh going coast to coast for a layup. 2-0. Eaglecrest responds with a 3, then Brendan gets an offensive rebound and put back to retake the lead. 4-3. Another Eaglecrest 3 makes it 4-6. Brendan continues his offensive roll with a baseline drive and layup. Next time down, he again drives baseline and draws a foul, hitting 1 of 2 free throws. 7-6. The Raptors respond with an inside bucket, but Josh answers with a baseline drive and hoop, and Brendan again gets loose in the lane for a score. 9-8 Arapahoe. On the next possession, Josh drives but cannot convert. Jake cleans the glass and converts for an 11-8 lead. Successive Eaglecrest jumpers allow them to regain the lead, but Kiran gets fouled on a shot attempt and he knocks down 1 of 2 freebies to tie it at 12.
These Warriors are at their best when they get locked in on defense. And that’s how they start the 2nd period. Kevin blocks the shot of a driving Raptor, and the defense scrambles and swarms to cause turnovers on back to back Eaglecrest possessions. After the 2nd, Nikko leads a fast break and pulls up for a short jumper. 14-12. The defense causes another turnover. Kiran scoops up the loose ball and goes coast to coast. He cannot convert his layup attempt but draws a foul, hitting 1 of 2 free throws. 15-12. Eaglecrest scores on their next possession. 15-14. Mitch then finds an opening in the Eaglecrest zone, receives the ball in the lane and is fouled on his shot. He hits 1 of 2 to bump the lead to 16-14. After Josh gets the steal on D, he finds a soft spot in the middle of the Eaglecrest zone. He draws the defense to him and drops off a pretty dime to Brendan for a layup. 18-14. Eaglecrest responds with 2 baskets to tie it at 18. Bobby answers with a drive down the lane, dropping it off to Josh for an easy 2. 20-18. Eaglecrest ties it before Josh drives and feeds Grant for another hoop. 22-20. Eaglecrest looks to tie it with a last second shot but Josh blocks the attempt to preserve the lead at the half.
Continuing their momentum of the 2nd quarter, the Sophomore Warriors come out in the 3rd with a show of lockdown defense, great ball movement and unselfish play. Kevin drives baseline and finds Josh for the layup. 24-20. Eaglecrest draws within 2 with a bucket. 24-22. Jake earns a put back with another offensive rebound. 26-22. Kiran connects on a 3 pointer. 29-22. Josh gets loose in the soft spot of the zone and knocks down a foul line jumper. 31-22. Bobby drives the lane and scores, then draws a charge at the other end as a Raptor tries to respond in kind. The Warriors hold the Raptors to 2 points in the quarter and lead by 11, 33-22.
Tension builds as the 4th quarter begins. Can the Warriors maintain their control of tempo? Will the Raptors shake out of their funk and make a comeback? The Raptors open the last stanza with a score to cut the lead to single digits, 33-24. At the other end, Mitch drives and is fouled. As he takes his first free throw, the Eaglecrest coach earns a technical foul for his persistent complaining of the foul call. Mitch hits 1 of 2 free throws, and Tom hits 1 of 2 for the technical. 35-24. Eaglecrest hits one of 2 free throws to make it 35-25. Bobby is fouled away from the basket, but it’s Eaglecrest’s 10th foul, so Arapahoe will get 2 free throws for every Eaglecrest foul the rest of the way. Bobby calmly sinks both of his attempts to make it 37-25. The Raptors score five straight to cut the lead to 7, 37-30. Kevin ends the run with 1 of 2 free throws, 38-30, but Eaglecrest then knocks down a 3. 38-33. Did I already mention the mounting tension in the gym? Josh answers in a big way with a strong driving layup. 40-33. Eaglecrest looks to answer, but Kevin comes up with a huge block and an Eaglecrest player gets T’d up for something he said after the play. Timeout Eaglecrest. As the referee explains the call to the scorers table, he hears something he doesn’t like from an assistant coach, and gives the Eaglecrest bench another technical, resulting in the ejection of the Eaglecrest head coach. Bobby hits 3 of the 4 resulting free throws to push the lead to 43-33. On the ensuing possession, Josh is fouled and converts 1 of 2 attempts. 44-33. Eaglecrest goes on a 7 point run to cut the lead to 4, 44-40. Brendan ends that run with an inside bucket, 46-40. Josh and Brendan each hit 2 free throws down the stretch, and the Warriors close out the Raptors 50-42 for an exciting win.
1/8 Sophomore Warriors at Mullen
Welcome to Hutchison Field House – home of the Mullen Mustangs. Walk into the expansive gymnasium with all the state title banners hanging on the walls. Then keep going. Down the hallway until you get to the dank, dark old gym. The one with the concrete edged court, creaky bleachers and the same asbestos covered ceiling that has not changed since I went to school there way back when. No, not when it first opened as an orphanage – I’m not that old. This is where Sophomore basketball lives.
Bobby opens the scoring with a steal at the defensive end and goes coast to coast for a layup. Mullen ties it a 2, but Brendan feeds Josh in the lane for a short jumper. 4-2. Mullen takes the lead with a 3, but Tom corrals an offensive rebound and is fouled on his follow attempt. He hits 1 of 2 free throws to tie it at 5. After a Mullen jumper, Nikko drives the baseline and feeds Jake in the lane for an easy 2. Mullen’s zone defense stymies the Warrior offense the rest of the way, and the 1st quarter ends with the Mustangs leading by 5, 7-12.
As this team has demonstrated in the past, the most effective way for them to get out of an offensive funk is to turn up the D. Cue the full court defense. Grant gets things started in the 2nd quarter with a nice pass over the zone to the weak side where Nikko lays it in. 9-12. Grant then gets a steal and goes coast to coast for 2, 11-12. Kevin drives the lane and dishes to Jake, who nails a short runner, and the Warriors regain the lead, 13-12. Another Grant steal and long lead to Nikko on a breakaway results in a hard foul by Mullen as Nikko goes down against the wall behind the basket. Bobby comes in to take the free throws and hits 1 of 2. 14-12. Next time down, Bobby drives the lane for a deuce. 16-12. As a Mullen player is looking to pass, Josh rips the ball out of his hands and goes the other way for a layup. 18-12. David and Brendan combine on a nice high-low combination that gets Brendan an easy layup. 20-12. Bobby shakes and bakes, breaking down a helpless defender, driving the lane for a layup. 22-12. Preston starts a fast break and feeds Josh for a layup to end the scoring, 23-12 at the half. Arapahoe completely shut out Mustangs in the 2nd quarter.
After a Mullen hoop to begin the 2nd half, Tom answers with a 3. 27-14. Between two Mullen scores, Kiran hits 1 of 2 free throws. 28-18. The Arapahoe goes on a 10-0 run. Tom gets a steal and feeds Nikko on the fast break for 2. 30-18. Josh starts a fast break that ends with a layup by Jake. 32-18. Jake earns a trip to the foul line after an offensive rebound and hits 1 of 2. 33-18. Preston nails a corner 3. 36-18. Brendan gets fouled on a follow after an offensive rebounds and hit 2 free throws. 38-18 at the end of 3, and possibly the best back to back quarters of the season for the Sophomore Warriors.
The 4th quarter resembled more of a rugby scrum at times than a basketball game as Mullen tried to get physical to knock the Warriors off their game. After a Mullen free throw, Bobby drives and dishes to Jake. 40-19. Brendan establishes position on the low block, gets the ball and spins baseline for a layup. 42-19. After a Mitch free throw, the offense goes cold for several minutes and Mullen cuts the lead to 43-30. Arapahoe ends the run as Bobby goes coast to coast and drops a sweet dime to Brendan. 45-30. One free throw by Bobby and 3 by Tom end the scoring as Arapahoe goes on to win 49-37.
Arapahoe Sophs take down Heritage
Pre game warm ups showed the Warriors relaxed and loose – a good sign for a match against nearby rival Eagles. It’s easy to get too pumped up for an Arapahoe-Heritage basketball game. Heritage opened the scoring by feeding the post, converting a shot from in close. Then the Sophomore Warriors let the Eagles know what the themes of the game would be – sharing the ball on offense and defensive pressure. A Bobby drive ties the game at 2, and Josh steals the subsequent inbound pass, gets fouled and hits 1 of 2 to take the lead, 3-2. Heritage ties it with a free throw, and then the onslaught begins. Preston pops a 3; Josh gets a steal and feeds Preston for a layup. Josh again steals the inbound pass and converts an easy layup. Brendan drives the baseline for a layup. Josh the Burglar makes another steal, igniting a fast break to Preston who finds a streaking Bobby for a layup. Heritage finally breaks the 11-0 run with an inside score to make it 14-5. At the other end, Jake gets a put back on an offensive rebound, then the pressing defense results in a steal by Tom, who starts the break the other way. Bobby then finds Brendan loose in the lane. He scores and is fouled, making the free throw for a 3 point play. Next time down, Bobby drives for a hoop. A Heritage 3 precedes a Kiran drive, drawing the foul and hitting both free throws. After two Heritage free throws, Nikko drives and earns a trip to the charity stripe where he converts both freebies. Heritage gets a hoop and a foul to make it 25-13. As the opening stanza winds down, Arapahoe sets up for an inbound play. Kiran weaves his way through a maze of teammates setting picks on defenders. He receives the pass in the left corner and launches a shot from behind the three point line. It’s off the mark, but he draws the foul. He hits all 3 free throws to end the quarter pushing the lead to 28-13.
Arapahoe keeps the pedal to the metal in the 2nd quarter as Preston opens the scoring with a drive and layup. 30-13. After a Heritage 3, Josh posts up down low, establishing position in the paint. Jake feeds him in the post and he powers to the hoop, drawing the foul and converting 2 free throws. 32-16. Next possession, the offense patiently works the ball around until Preston curls to the top of the key and pops another 3. 35-16. Heritage answers with a 3, then Bobby goes to work. First he drives the lane and floats a pass over the top of a defender to Brendan for an easy layup. Then he drives and kicks the ball to an open Josh in the corner, who buries the trey. 40-19. Kevin earns 4 free throws down the stretch, and Tom hits a smooth 3 to push the lead to 45-20. Heritage answers with 2 free throws before Kiran puts an exclamation point on the first half, hitting a deep 3 as the clock winds down. In their most dominating performance of the season, the Warriors lead 50-22.
The pace in the 3rd quarter slows considerably. Arapahoe keeps up the defensive pressure to limit Heritage opportunities. Offensive highlights included a Kiran 3, a drive and hoop by Grant, a driving layup by Kevin, and a power drive and bucket by Josh. At the end of three, the Warriors lead 59-35.
More of the same unselfish play for the Warriors in the 4th quarter with Bobby driving and dishing to Jake for an inside score. Josh follows with a steal and goes coast to coast for a layup. Kevin drives and feeds Mitch down low for a hoop, and Kiran drives to get to the free throw line, making 1 of 2. As Arapahoe goes into its stall offense, Kevin is fouled and hits 1 of 2 free throws, before the Warriors make a play that sums up the team oriented, unselfish effort they displayed all night. Great ball movement on the perimeter allows Mitch to establish position in the paint, defended by Heritage’s diminutive point guard. He posts him up and catches the entry pass. He spins past the defender and finds a wide open lane to the basket. On the other side of the key, David darts in unguarded. Mitch delivers the ball to David who lays it in, and caps a 69-48 victory. Great team effort. Great team win.
Game #3 vs. Smoky Hill
Coming off their first loss of the season earlier in the week, the Sophomore Warriors enter their matchup with Smoky Hill intent on getting back to their winning ways. The game opens with both teams pushing the pace on offense. After Smoky Hill breaks the ice with a drive and hoop, precocious point guard Bobby goes to work. He gets a steal and drives for a layup. After a defensive stop, Bobby drives the lane for another bucket. 4-2 Warriors. Arapahoe’s zone defense is swarming. Other than one inside bucket, Smoky Hill settles for launching the 3 ball without much success. Jake gets loose inside for a score to regain the lead 6-4, but after Smoky Hill ties the score, they draw a foul on a 3 point attempt and convert all 3 free throws. Jake works the offensive glass for a rebound and put back to draw within one, but Smoky Hill finally gets a 3 to drop at the buzzer. At the end of 1, Warriors trail 8-12.
Preston kicks off the 2nd quarter scoring with a drive to make it 10-12. Smoky Hill answers with a drive of their own to put the lead back to 4, 10-14. Bobby pokes the ball away from a Smoky Hill player, Kiran scoops it up and gets it back to Bobby who drives, but misses a contested layup. Jake cleans up the miss with another putback to make it 12-14. The Warriors then get sloppy with the ball, resulting in turnovers and Smoky Hill drives to the hoop, getting fouled on three straight attempts. They hit 4 of 6 free throws to make it 12-18. Jake stops the run with an inside shot. Smoky Hill hits 1 of 2 free throws before Preston drives the lane for a score. Smoky Hill hits 2 more free throws before Brendan unleashes a pretty spin move off a post up. He drives the baseline and finishes with a sweet reverse layup. 18-21. Preston cuts the lead to 1 with a hoop and a foul but can’t convert the “and 1”. Smoky Hill closes out the scoring with yet another free throw, and the Warriors are down 20-22 at the half.
The 2nd half begins with a Smoky Hill offensive rebound and score, but Brendan answers with a post up and spin into the lane for a layup. 22-24. Smoky Hill’s point guard converts a 3 point play to boost the lead to 5, 22-27. Kevin responds with a drive and hoop, 24-27, but Smoky Hill gets another 3 point play to make it 24-30. Bobby feeds Jake in the post. He earns 2 free throws and converts them to make it 26-30. Smoky Hill connects on a 3 point attempt before Grant scores on a drive into the lane. 28-33. A Smoky Hill drive boosts their lead to 7, but Bobby hits 2 free throws and Mitch drives for 2 to end the quarter and cut the lead to 3, 32-35. The Warriors struggled with their outside shots, but turned up the D and got into the lane to keep things close.
Smoky Hill’s guards were determined to drive the lane. Their first foray in the 4th quarter results in a layup. 32-37. Mitch establishes good position down low, gets the pass and converts for 2. 34-37. Niko follows that with a dagger 3 to tie it at 37. Preston gives Arapahoe their first lead since the opening minutes of the game by making 1 of 2 free throws. The Warriors and Buffaloes go toe to toe like two heavy weight boxers, trading shots…..Smoky Hill steals and drives for a layup to take back the lead, 38-39. Preston answers with a 3, 41-39. Smoky Hill converts 2 free throws, then Preston drives and dish’s to Jake for a layup. 43-41 Arapahoe. After a Smoky Hill free throw, Kevin earns a trip to the foul line for a 1 and 1. He misses his attempt, but a Smoky Hill player tries to drive a Warrior into our bench with his “box out”. Refs call a foul on Smoky Hill, and their coach earns a technical foul for arguing the call. Preston hits 1 of 2 free throws. 44-42. The Warriors get a defensive stop, and Niko responds on the offensive end with a floater in the lane. 46-42. Brendan steps up the D with blocks on back to back defensive possessions. Bobby gets the rebound on the 2nd block and gets mugged and pushed to the ground as he is surrounded by 3 Smoky Hill players. No call. Smoky Hill follows up with a banked in 3 to cut the lead to 1, 46-45. Preston earns a trip to the line with a drive, hitting both free throws and Brendan hits 1 of 2 free throws to push the lead to 4, 49-45. After a Smoky Hill miss, Bobby grabs the rebound and is fouled. Ice cold, he steps to the line and hits both attempts to seal the win 51-45. The boys battled back and earned a W in a tough fought battle.
Arapahoe Sophs drop game to Overland
Sophomore Warriors vs. Overland Trailblazers
The Overland Trainblazers boast having the top player in Colorado boys basketball – De’Ron Davis. He’s not eligible to play for Overland’s sophomore team, but they had their own #20 who did a remarkable impression of Davis (Mini D?) this night, scoring inside, blocking shots and grabbing rebounds, leading Overland to a 10 point lead at the end of the 1st quarter. Warriors trail 12-22.
Arapahoe rallied in the 2nd with a drive by Preston, and a steal by Nikko, who goes coast to coast for the layup to cut the lead 16-22. Overland responds with three buckets down low and a free throw to bump the lead back to double digits, 16-29. Preston nails a 3, and Kevin battles for a defensive rebound, getting fouled by Overland’s Mini D, who earns a seat on the bench for the rest of the half, and sends Kevin to the foul line where he calmly sinks both ends of the 1 and 1. Back and forth action ensues. As the clock winds down, Overland’s point guard drives hard down the lane, but Kevin swats the shot away to end the half. Arapahoe trails 25-32.
The 3rd quarter opens with Kevin still pumped about his previous defensive play. Inspired, he blocks Mini D on back to back possessions, with Mini D earning his 4th foul after the 2nd block. He heads to the bench – a good sign for an Arapahoe rally. However, the offense got sloppy and the shooting went cold, generating only 2 points in the quarter – a put back by David from an offensive rebound. At the end of 3, Arapahoe trails 27-42.
Kevin leads off the 4th with another block, resulting in a Bobby coast to coast drive and hoop. Overland answers with 2 scores. Tom then scores off a nice give and go with Kevin, and follows with an offensive rebound and hoop. Overland’s Mini D, back in the game, delivers inside and an Overland shooter banks in a 3. Bobby closes out the Arapahoe scoring with 2 free throws and a driving layup, but the Warriors go down 37-55, in their first loss of the season.
December 1 – Sophomore Warriors @ Ponderosa
In their first game of the season, the Sophomore Warriors started off cold. The Ponderosa Mustangs galloped to an early 5-0 lead, primarily fueled by their zone defense, which caused the Warriors to go scoreless on their first 5 possessions. The offense finally got things going when Mitch made a steal and fed Brendan for a layup and a foul, but he could not convert the free throw. Bobby doubled the offensive output with a drive for a score, but too many missed free throws and settling for outside shots against the zone resulted in being down 9-4 after the 1st quarter.
To start the 2nd, the Warriors were focused on turning up the defensive intensity, and getting to the rim. Preston kicked things off by draining a 3. Bobby then made a steal in the backcourt and was fouled on his drive to the hoop. He came up empty on his 2 free throws, but the tone was set. On the next possession, Bobby fed Josh in the high post, and he dumped it to Brendan down low for an easy bucket. Josh then got inside and hit a short jumper in the lane to take the lead 11-9. Josh continued his frenzied attack on back to back possessions – getting a steal and going coast to coast for a layup and driving the lane for a contested layup. Ponderosa hit a jumper at the buzzer to retake the lead 16-15 at the half.
Arapahoe continued to look for opportunities in the 3rd quarter to get going in the open court and not let Ponderosa get their zone D set up. This resulted in multiple driving layups for Bobby, a corner 3 from Tom, and free throws from Kevin and Brendan as Arapahoe retook the lead 25-24. A Grant steal and feed to Tom earned Tom 2 free throws to extend the lead to 27-24. After Ponderosa tied it up with a 3, Bobby got to the charity stripe once more, getting fouled on a drive. His two free throws and a Josh drive for 2 ended the scoring in the 3rd. Warriors lead 31-27.
Arapahoe came out in the 4th intent on keeping up the pressure on the Mustangs. Preston helped open the scoring with a drive and dish to Josh for a layup. Nikko made a steal and layed it in for another 2. Josh then got loose inside for another bucket. 37-29. Arapahoe’s D has Ponderosa out of rhythm on offense and they can’t get anything going. Jake cashes in with a hoop on an offensive rebound to stretch the lead to 10, 39-29. After a Ponderosa free throw, Kiran nails a 3 to make it 41-30. Ponderosa finally found a way to score against the Warriors – by getting to the free throw line. They cut the lead to 4 (41-37) with a parade of trips to the charity stripe, but Arapahoe closed out the game with free throws from Bobby and Tom down the stretch.