Bulldogs boys, girls basketball teams fall in Grand Junction

MCHS basketball teams lose on road

Although the Moffat County High School girls varsity basketball team lost Tuesday night, coach Craig Mortensen said he was pleased with the effort.

After falling, 45-34, to Grand Junction High School, Mortensen said the Bulldogs (4-7 overall, 2-0 in the Western Slope League) impressed him.

“I felt like we made progress tonight,” he said. “Sometimes, in a win you don’t make any progress and in a loss, you do. If we can play hard and play aggressive like we did tonight, take away the slow start, I think we’ll be all right.”

Grand Junction leaped ahead to a 16-2 start, but Moffat County trimmed it to 16-8 at the end of the first quarter.

“The real difference in the game was, we just didn’t start very well,” Mortensen said. “We were pretty tentative.”

That shaky start didn’t last for long, as the Bulldogs started to dominate on the offensive glass, Mortensen said.

“We had quite a few girls play well,” he said. “Lauren Roberts had a really good game. They all contributed, all did a good job. What really helped us today was they were really aggressive on the boards. They had a lot of offensive rebounds and putbacks.”

But despite 11 points from Annie Sadvar, 9 points from Roberts and 7 points from Melissa Camilletti, the team couldn’t catch up to a quick Grand Junction team.

“They were good,” Mortensen said. “They have a good team, and they have some good players.”

But, Mortensen said the workman-like effort put forth by the Bulldogs caught his eye.

“I was really proud of the kids,” he said. “They played really hard, they never quit and they played aggressive. We just had a bad start, and we’ll have to start better.”

The Moffat County boys varsity basketball team was also the victim of a slow start against Grand Junction.

“We just never got off the bus,” MCHS coach Steve Maneotis said. “We played poorly; we were very tentative. We didn’t score in the first quarter, we only took two shots.”

The team wasn’t able to recover against the Tigers, and fell, 47-26.

Part of Moffat County’s struggles came from a large Grand Junction (7-4 overall) squad.

“We played a very, very physical Grand Junction High School team,” Maneotis said. “They completely dominated every aspect of the game. They really set us back on our heals and it was a tough learning curve for the kids.”

Maneotis said it was hard to take anything positive away from the game.

“They were much bigger,” he said. “Size, strength, quickness — they had it all. My hat’s off to Grand Junction. They played a very physical, dominant game, they played passing lanes well.

“We started to stand around in our offensive sets, and when you play a team like that, it’s a recipe for disaster.”

But the team won’t focus on the loss for long, Maneotis said.

“We’re going to have to retool quickly and forget about tonight,” he said. “We are going to get back to that up-tempo Moffat County style of basketball against Palisade.”

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