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5 preps games to watch this week

Published: March 2, 2014, 11:05 pm, by Scott Kaniewski

Every week, the Colorado Springs Gazette staff will choose the five most intriguing events to keep an eye on. Here’s a glance at this week’s events.

Game of the Week

Boys’ Basketball: No.1 D’Evelyn (20-5) vs. No. 2 Sand Creek (20-5)

Where: Denver Coliseum

When: Saturday, TBA

Outlook: It’s going to be fast-paced, high scoring and a whole bunch of fun to watch. And that’s just during pregame warm-ups. Coming into the boys’ 4A quarterfinals, there’s no doubt, the high-octane offenses of Sand Creek (61 points per game) and D’Evelyn (70) are peaking at the right times. Going one way, the Scorpions are proving more and more they can hit you from the perimeter with senior shooters Dylan Clark and Nick Pasley, or punch you in the paint with the fullback-sized Langston Bell. … Going the other, D’Evelyn is averaging more than 75 points in their past five games. … Because of this, Sand Creek’s best shot at moving onto the semifinals may be on the defensive end. When the Jags score more than 70 points, they are 10-0. When they score 70 points or less, they are just 10-5. … The Scorpions have proved capable of stingy defense, holding their first two opponents this postseason to less than 50 points apiece.

 

Boys’ Basketball: No. 1 Thompson Valley (24-1) vs. No. 2 Cheyenne Mountain (20-5)

Where: Denver Coliseum

When: Saturday, TBA

Outlook: Leading scorer Ghassan Nehme (26.5 points per game) can’t foul out again if Cheyenne Mountain hopes to pull off the upset in the 4A boys’ quarterfinals. After sitting late in the Indians 52-44 win over Longmont in the round of 16, Nehme will have play throughout this one and be at his best to help Cheyenne Mountain beat the senior-heavy Eagles of Thompson Valley. … If there’s a blueprint to beating this Loveland-based team, PPAC’s Lewis-Palmer got very close to it in the second round of these playoffs, keeping the game tied into the fourth quarter. … Yep, it’ll take stifling defense from the Indians to keep it close, and Nehme will have to do what he’s done much of the season and stay hot from the field late in the game. … In the teams’ first meeting this season, the Indians ran out to an 18-10 lead after the first quarter, but went cold from the field for the rest of the game and lost 56-47.

 

Girls’ Basketball: No. 1 10 Sand Creek (22-3) vs. No. 2 Valor Christian  (22-3)

Where: Denver Coliseum

When: Saturday, TBA

Outlook: Thank goodness for Valor Christian, a lot can happen to a team in two months – good and bad. But with how good Sand Creek has looked in both of its wins in the 4A girls’ state tournament, the Eagles can be good and their chances of winning would still probably be looked at as an outside chance by most in the quarterfinals. … When asked about the Scorpions’ 33-point win over Valor in the teams’ first meeting in January, Mikayla Reese remained confident the second meeting could end with a similar result. The senior guard said, “We are very confident against them. We like how our style matches up with their style.”

 

Girls’ Basketball: No. 1 Mesa Ridge (25-0) vs. No. 2 D’Evelyn (21-4)

Where: Denver Coliseum

When: Saturday, TBA

 Outlook: Who do you have to stop in order to beat Mesa Ridge? Kylee Shook averages a double-double, Sami Rudd has recorded a double-double in nearly half of her games, Gabby Purnell can blow past you or pull up for a lengthy jumper, and Tiffani Jackson and Venessanah Itugbu can beat you on either side of the ball. You can’t stop them all. … Meaning, last year’s 4A runner-up, D’Evelyn, will have to do something no other team has done this season and find out the correct answer to that question if they want to upset the undefeated Grizzlies. … Before the first round of this postseason, Mesa Ridge coach Jeff Beatty said the teams on the Grizzlies side of the bracket would have a tough time matching up with the team’s size and depth. He’s been right so far. … Don’t expect the Jaguars to lay down, however. They have been here before, beating Sand Creek two years in a row during these quarterfinals to move on.

 

Girls’ Basketball: No. 1 Broomfield (25-0) vs. No. 3 Palmer Ridge (22-3)

 Where: Denver Coliseum

When: Saturday, TBA

Outlook: Palmer Ridge will have to do something no team has come within 20 points of doing – beat 4A’s top dog, Broomfield. The Bears, who are the highest area seed left in the 4A girls’ tournament, will need huge performances from seniors Ali Meyer and Michelle DeCoud to pull off the biggest upset of the 4A girls’ season. … Palmer Ridge has won both of its playoff games by double digits despite scoring less than 60 in each. The Bears will likely have to score plenty more against the Eagles, who put up more than 75 points a game.

What first-round match interests you the most? Tell us on Facebook.

Brent W. New, The Gazette

Twitter: @brentwnew @gazettepreps