VIDEO: Top 10 Basketball Plays of the Week
The state basketball tournaments have a tendency to provide weeks of excitement that lead to thrilling conclusions at various championship venues throughout the state.
The Class 5A and 4A regular seasons ended Feb. 22, and the brackets for the respective state tournaments were released the next day. A lot of top seeds didn't come as a surprise to those tracking teams all year. But the makeup of the bracket and the potential matchups that could be seen during the next two weeks are only fueling the fire of anticipation.
Here is a breakdown of the 5A and 4A state brackets as games begin Feb. 26.Class 5A // Brackets
Chauncey Billups Region
Defending 5A champion Rangeview (Aurora)
has proven itself as the team to beat through the course of the regular season. In fact, the Raiders haven't lost a game since Dec. 22, 2018. Since then they have been the standard of 5A basketball: they have a state championship trophy and now an undefeated regular season to show for it. Obi Agbim
leads the team with 12 points per game, but the team has threats across the board as Cade Palmer
, Christopher Speller
and Christian Speller
all average double figures in scoring as well.
There might be a bit of a sleeper in the region as
takes the No. 9 seed. The Rebels have been streaky at times this year and maybe lost some games they shouldn't have, but with Luke O'Brien
's 25 points per game, they are a threat. No. 8 Boulder
and No. 16 Mountain Vista (Highlands Ranch)
are the other teams with a first-round bye in the region.Chuck Williams RegionFairview (Boulder)
heads into the bracket as the No. 2 seed behind a stellar 20-3 record. Two of the three losses the Knights suffered were to teams with byes in the first round in Eaglecrest (Centennial)
and Cherry Creek (Greenwood Village)
. Junior Greysen Carter
leads the team with 17.5 points and 7.9 rebounds per game. They do most of their work from inside the 3-point line. The team as a whole averages just four triples a game. Jalen Page
leads the Knight with 20 made 3-pointers.
For much of the season, Smoky Hill (Aurora)
was regarded as a top-10 team and actually enters the tournament at No. 10. Quinten Rock
and Jalen Weaver
combine to score almost 40 points per game, which is more than half of the Buffaloes' offensive production. No. 7 Chaparral (Parker)
and No. 15 Vista PEAK Prep (Aurora)
come in as the other top teams in this region.Larry Farmer Region
A brutal 5A Jeffco League schedule played into the favor of Ralston Valley (Arvada)
. The Mustangs are the top seed here and the No. 3 overall seed in the 5A bracket. Caleb Rillos
averages a double-double with 18.3 points and 10.4 rebounds per game. His rebound split is nearly even between offensive and defensive, so he's been able to give Ralston Valley a lot of second-chance scoring opportunities. Caden Gigstad
and Luke Carlston
also score n double figures, giving the Mustangs a lot of talented, experienced scoring options.
A stretch toward the end of the regular season saw Eaglecrest lose three of five games at one point, but that can be a little deceiving. The Centennial League often gets several highly seeded teams into the tournament and they tend to be battle-tested. Coach Jarris Krapcha is hoping his squad, led by point guard Zion Ruckard
(17.4 points per game), is stout enough for a win-or-go home atmosphere. No. 6 Valor Christian (Highlands Ranch)
and No. 14 Horizon (Thornton)
also have byes in the region.Kent Smith Region
Speaking of the Centennial League, champion Cherry Creek rounds out the top four teams in the overall tournament. The Bruins escaped league play relatively unscathed, going 13-1. Julian Hammond III
and Myles Purchase
carried success over from the football field as they average 22.5 and 13.7 points per game, respectively. The Bruins enter the tournament with an eight-game winning streak.
Following its first league championship in school history, Pine Creek (Colorado Springs)
is looking to keep its momentum as it comes in as the No. 12 seed. Peyton Westfall
leads the Eagles with 14.3 points per game and has been deadly from the outside, connecting on 70 3-pointers this year. Rounding out the region's top seeds are No. 5 Grandview (Aurora)
and No. 13 Denver East
.Class 4A // Brackets
Ron Vlasin Region
After dropping its season opener this year, Mead (Longmont)
rattled off 22 straight wins to enter the 4A tournament as the top overall seed. The Mavericks are led by seniors Will Maher
and Trey Ward
, who both average 14.7 points per game. Coach Darin Reese has also praised the play of sophomores Elijah Knudsen
and JP Shiers
at various points of the season.
Cheyenne Mountain (Colorado Springs)
enters the bracket as the No. 8 seed, but could be the most dangerous team in the entire tournament. Senior Javonte Johnson
leads the state, regardless of classification, with 30.4 points per game. No. 9 Montrose
and No. 16 Silver Creek (Longmont)
start their tournament runs with first-round byes. Larry Brunson RegionGlenwood Springs
enters the tournament as the No. 2 seed and is looking to make a deep run to avenge their second-round loss a year ago. John Iuele
leads the team offensive with 13.6 points per game. Will Narvaez
has been big on the glass, pulling down nearly nine rebounds per game.
Wins over The Classical Academy (Colorado Springs)
and Harrison (Colorado Springs)
shows that Pueblo West
has the ability to hang with the top teams in the classification. The No. 10 Cyclones are paced by Taylor Harris
, who averages 16 points per game. No. 7 Harrison and No. 15 Green Mountain (Lakewood)
are the other top teams in the region. Guy Gibbs RegionLongmont
has played in the state championship game the past two years and even won it back in 2018. The Trojans are the No. 3 seed in the tournament behind Dallas Dye
(14.7 points and 7.1 rebounds per game) and Eddie Kurjak
(13.9 points and three blocks per game). Longmont lost a close 51-43 showdown with No. 1 Mead on Dec. 14.Conifer
is the No. 14 seed in the tournament thanks to an 18-5 record and league championship. Elijah Cook
and Ocean Hageman
each average double-digit scoring numbers, giving the Lobos a solid one-two punch. No. 6 Skyline (Longmont)
has a bye to start the tournament as does No. 11 The Classical Academy.Richard Tate RegionGolden
made sure its non-league schedule would help prepare its players for a tournament run. Outside of winning the 4A Jeffco League title, the Demons took on a few 5A tournament teams, including Ralston Valley and George Washington (Denver). Kevin Mulligan
, Alan Acevedo
and Ben McLaughlin
all average at least 11 points per game, which provides plenty of offensive depth.
In just its fourth season of varsity play, Northfield (Denver)
built a team solid enough to get the No. 5 seed in the tournament. Nahsyah Bolar
averages 18.3 points and 11.1 rebounds per game. Marcus Rogers
and Bally Diakite
each add 11 points per game for the Nighthawks. No. 12 Erie
and No. 13 Pueblo East
round out the top teams in the region.