It was fast and it was physical. And it was just the kind of game 6-foot-11 Dawson Carper is built for.
Carper used his position at the post to put up 32 points for the Rams on the way to a 79-62 victory on the first night of the Rampart Holiday Classic. He capped off a double-double with 13 rebounds and shot 74 percent from the field.
Although the Rams didn’t shoot well from the outside, and shot 50 percent from the line, they had 19 steals, led by Xavier Johnson with seven.
“We were pretty aggressive today on defense, and we had some good traps and stuff on their press,” Carper said. We ran the court well to get some easy transition points and dunks.”
Carper slammed two dunks in the first half nearly back-to-back as the Rams took a five-point lead at the break.
“Since we haven’t played for a while I thought we were a little rusty in the first half, but we hustled well and hopefully tomorrow we will do better in execution,” Carper said.
Josh Kavalec shot 67 percent from the field for 17 points and led the team with seven assists and had five steals. Johnson was third on the team in scoring with 16 points.
Fruita Monument’s physicality got the better of them in the fourth quarter as the team got into foul trouble and put Rampart in the double bonus early in the frame. The Wildcats’ leading scorer Reilly Flinn was in danger of fouling out in the fourth with four personal fouls. He led the team with 17 points.
Up next: Rampart faces Colorado Springs Christian on Friday at 8 p.m.
Fruita Monument runs over Rampart
Rampart faced an uphill battle in its tournament opener on Thursday. And there’s really no complicated analysis for the Rams 52-31 defeat - Fruita Monument simply played better.
The Rams had a solid first quarter in which they escaped with a relatively narrow deficit, but the Wildcats were just getting started.
Riley Snyder put on a clinic scoring 20 points for Fruita Monument (9-1) in the first half, leading to the Wildcats’ 28-15 lead at the break. And while she backed off in the second, the deficit was already too great for the Rams to overcome.
Kennedy Wriedt led Rampart with 10 points as one of just two players to make more than one shot. Bailee Hart had seven points for the Rams (3-4).
Up next: The Rams will battle Colorado Springs Christian on Friday at 6:30 p.m.
CSCS girls fall to Pueblo West in first loss of the season
It was a battle of unbeatens between the Pueblo West and Colorado Springs Christian School girls’ basketball teams in the opening game of the Rampart Holiday Classic.
And the first half looked like it was going to be a fight to the finish, but CSCS’ uncharacteristic shooting and the Cyclone's outside game put a stop to the Lions' perfect season in a 41-30 loss.
The Lions shot just 34 percent from the field as they faced arguably the most physical defense they’ve seen this season.
“They have a hard, intense defense, and we were trying to be stronger with the ball and driving, but we just weren’t,” CSCS coach Mark Engesser said. “We’re known as a good shooting team, and they’re not as good a shooting team, but they hit the 3s when they needed to, and we didn’t.”
The Cyclones (9-0) hit three straight 3-pointers at the end of the third quarter to gain a nine-point lead. From there, the Lions couldn’t bounce back.
“Those 3’s broke our backs,” Engesser said. “If you take them away, we win.”
Megan Engesser led the Lions (5-1) with 13 points, followed by Rachel Ingram with 12, who scored all of her points on 3-pointers.
Up next: The Lions face Rampart girls on Friday at 6:30 p.m.
Pueblo West overwhelms CSCS boys in transition
Colorado Springs Christian dropped 10 treys in its opening game of the Rampart Holiday Classic, but the Lions' outside game was not enough to overcome the Cyclone’s speed in a 68-48 loss.
With the help of Noah Hopkins and his work beyond the arc, CSCS racked up an eight-point lead midway through the second quarter, but it didn’t take long for things to get out of hand.
Pueblo West went on a 17-0 run through the second and third quarters to pull out of reach from the Lions.
“I’m very pleased with how my boys played and how they started the game,” Engesser said. “We had that one bad stretch and if you take that four minute stretch away, they had a good effort. We are undersized. They’re bigger and faster than us, and I am pleased with how we played.”
Niemyeme Smeyer-Williams and Jacob Wilkenson led the Cyclones’ campaign in the second quarter, scoring six points each, while Wilkenson continued into the third adding nine more before fouling out early in the fourth.
Smeyer-Williams led the Cyclones with 19 points followed by Wilkenson (15) and Billy Bloesser (11).
Hopkins finished the game with five 3-pointers and led CSCS with 19 points. Brandon Pitt was second in scoring for the Lions with 13 points.
Up next: Colorado Springs Christian takes on Rampart on Friday at 8 p.m.