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7th-graders not challenged as they hoped

The seventh-grade boys basketball team headed to Denver on Saturday and Sunday for a tournament with tougher competition. What it got was an experience similar to the Craig Middle School season.

“I think the guys were a little disappointed about the competition,” coach Jeff Knoche said. “They came to play in some close games, and it didn’t happen.”

The Bulldogs won 43-7 against Columbine, 49-11 against Douglas County White and 59-11 against Longmont White.



That’s a combined 151-29.

“The guys thought the teams were one step up from who they faced in the middle school season,” Knoche said.



The tournament was hosted by the Gold Crown Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides opportunities for youths in sports such as basketball, volleyball and golf.

The Gold Crown Field House has nine basketball courts side by side. Knoche said his team might have been the only one to not stop when a referee on the next court blew the whistle.

“We talked about how they needed to keep on playing until a referee was right there,” Knoche said. “They did a good job of not being distracted in the facility we played in.”

Knoche said his group used its athletic ability to win its pool.

“They go to the boards, and sometimes they take four to five shots one trip down,” he said. “They have a good understanding of the game and how to get shots.”

Counting the middle school season, the Bulldogs are now 12-0 this fall. Knoche expects that undefeated streak to be seriously challenged Sunday.

The team travels back to the Gold Crown Field House on Sunday for the bracketed portion of the tournament.

“There were kids on some of the teams that didn’t look like any seventh-graders I’d ever seen,” Knoche said. “We’ll have to be on our A-game if we want to stick with those teams.”

The Bulldogs have a bye in the first round of the tournament and will play the winner of Pool H and Pool A at 9 a.m.

If the Bulldogs win out, they’ll play in the championship at 1:45 p.m. Sunday.


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