Only the Regis victory followed the seeding, and in the latter two games the Aurora teams vanquished a No. 1 seed.
Grandview (16-9) is a No. 4 seed and has now put together two big victories in a row. Last week, the Wolves beat Dakota Ridge 79-78 in double overtime. Grandview coach Gary Childress isn’t the overly excited type and he seemed almost fatalistic about when the Wolves were on the edge of defeat to the Eagles.
"There were about three times where we needed one thing to happen for us that we don’t usually have happen," Childress said.
In one instance, Grandview was trailing late, but Dakota Ridge had another edge.
"We were down by two, with a minute left, and Dakota Ridge had the basketball," Childress said. "I thought we were dead in the water at the time."
The Wolves made a steal and Dominique Lawence hit a 3-pointer at buzzer for the tie in regulation. Lawrence made other huge baskets and led Grandview with 18 points.
Kevin Gausman scored 17 and grabbed nine rebounds for the Wolves, and Austin Miller scored 14 and Dillon Moritz 11. Miller and Chris Martin (seven points) both fouled out during the lengthy contest. Gausman scored 20 and Lawrence 18 against Montbello. The Wolves led 25-13 at halftime in that one and never looked back.
Before the brackets were unveiled, there was some thought that Grandview wouldn’t get a pass through the first round. The Wolves had lost their last two games of the regular season, by one point to Cherokee Trail and decisively to Centennial League champion Arapahoe.
"I wasn’t sure how we’d bounce back from that," Childress said.
Even in the victories, Grandview wasn’t up to Childress’ ideals.
"I just never feel like we played 32 minutes of good basketball," he said. "Almost every game we’ve won, we had to come from behind. We’re not like the Grandview teams from the past; we’re big and athletic. It’s been a high maintenance group, too, but it’s been pretty rewarding."
Grandview will meet Fairview in the quarterfinals Friday.
O’Neill continues to roll
Darragh O'Neill scored 32 points to lead Fairview in an easy 74-61 win Tuesday against Mountain Range. O’Neill had two fouls in the first half and sat for a considerable amount of time, but he made 10 of 12 free throws as the Mustangs were forced to foul against their Front Range League rival.
Doherty justifies seed
If any team seemed to get a gift from the seeding committee, it was Doherty, awarded a No. 3 spot and a break from first-round action. The Spartans had a 14-9 record entering the postseason, while Chaparral had gone 19-5 and was seeded fourth.
Some of the acclaim appeared justified after Doherty beat always-tough Gateway and No. 2 seed Lincoln in succession. Tyler Velasquez scored 29 points to lead the Spartans against the Lancers on the road. Doherty (16-9) will meet Colorado Springs Metro League rival and top seed Rampart in the quarterfinals. Rampart won the two meetings during the regular season.
Class 4A has best matchups instead of highest seeds
Tournament matchups for the 4A quarterfinals Friday at the Colorado School of Mines didn’t completely follow the seeding.
In Sierra’s region, No. 3-seeded Thomas Jefferson (Denver) belted No. 2 Glenwood Springs 54-38 in the Demons’ own gym. Now, TJ goes on to meet No. 1 Sierra (Colorado Springs), which was even better than expected while whipping a good Northridge team, 88-63. TJ will have to upset the defending champion Stallions without four players, including two starters, after they were suspended for breaking team rules.
Sterling, the other No. 1 on the left side of the break, had a tough one, but prevailed against Centaurus, 65-61, in double overtime. The Tigers will face Lewis-Palmer (Monument), which put on a rush after a slow start to the season to grab the No. 2 seed. The Rangers beat Pueblo South 76-47. South was seeded No. 6 and beat No. 3 Rock Canyon 71-61 last Friday.
Seventh-seeded Windsor took down No. 2 D’Evelyn 69-61 last Friday, but there still is the matchup people wanted regardless of seed. Broomfield, a No. 3 seed, beat Windsor 75-62, forcing a showdown with No. 1 Pueblo East.
In the lower-right quadrant, there’s another highly anticipated game between the top two seeds, as No. 1 Longmont and No. 2 Pueblo Central will meet.