Steamboat Springs Despite getting back from Paonia at 2:30 a.m. Saturday, the Hayden boys basketball team defeated Plateau Valley, 57-49, Saturday night.
"Plateau Valley was a good, scrappy team, and I was very pleased with how we came out and played the first half," Tigers coach Shawn Baumgartner said. "We really stepped up."
Junior Bryan Richards finished with 22 points, and senior Keenan Bruchez had 14 points. Senior Tyson Sweetser added nine and was 7-of-8 from the free-throw line.
Friday, however, Hayden ran into a Paonia team well positioned to win the Western Slope League title. The Eagles defeated the Tigers, 51-37, in Paonia. Baumgartner said the Tigers didn't play well, but that may not have affected the result.
"They were very well-balanced," he said. "Their guards can handle the ball. They can shoot the ball, and they are 6-foot-6 and 6-foot-8 inside."
Paonia had been averaging more than 70 points a game, so the Tigers were pleased to hold the Eagles to 51, but Hayden only shot 30 percent from the field during the game.
Paonia outscored Hayden, 20-8, in the first quarter of Friday's game.
The Hayden girls basketball team dropped a pair of games during the weekend. The Tigers fell to Paonia, 45-41, Friday night in Paonia and lost, 61-50, to Plateau Valley on Saturday in Hayden. Hayden then lost to Moffat County's junior varsity team 48-25. Hayden travels to rival Soroco for a 5:30 p.m. game Friday in Oak Creek. Hayden hosts Rangely at 4 p.m. Saturday at Hayden High School.
Richards finished with 12, but he was the only Tiger in double figures. Senior Kyle Woodley had five assists in the loss.
Hayden played Moffat County's junior varsity in a non-league game Tuesday, winning, 71-37, in Hayden. The Tigers had a 9-point lead at the end of the first quarter and a 16-point lead by halftime.
Bruchez finished with 19 points and three blocks. Jordan Williams scored 14 points and was 4-of-7 from the three-point line. Tyson Letlow and Richards each had 10 points. Letlow added five assists and four rebounds. Richards was a perfect 5-for-5 from the floor.
Hayden (9-4 overall) travels to Soroco for a 7 p.m. game Friday in Oak Creek. The Tigers host Rangely at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday at the Hayden High School.
-- To reach Melinda Mawdsley, call 871-4208 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org