Soroco senior Alex Estes dunks the ball Saturday as the Rams beat Paonia, 66-58.

Photo by Joel Reichenberger

Soroco senior Alex Estes dunks the ball Saturday as the Rams beat Paonia, 66-58.

Rams boys basketball team flushes Eagles, 66-58

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Soroco's Leif Carlson goes up with a shot in the second half of Saturday's win against Paonia. Carlson finished with a game and career-high 19 points.

Statistics

PAONIA GIRLS 81, SOROCO 40

Paonia 22-20-18-21 — 81

Soroco (6-6, 2-3) 10-8-11-11 — 40

Paonia — Chelsy Reed 3 0-0 7, Johanna Reed 1 2-2 5, Kayla Wingfield 1 0-0 2, Leslie Trujillo 8 0-0 17, Grayson Pipher 6 5-7 17, Kendra Hinton 4 4-7 12, Shelby Campbell 2 0-0 4, Jordyn Rienks 4 0-0 9, Christy Farnsworth 4 0-0 8. Totals 30 11-16 81.

Soroco — Madison George 2 0-2 4, Lindsay Miles 3 6-9 13, Corey Snyder 2 4-6 8, Shelby Miles 1 2-4 4, Ceanna Rossi 3 0-2 6, Bethany Leu 2 0-0 5. Totals 13 12-23 40.

3-pointers — Paonia (3) — C. Reed, J. Reed, Rienks. Soroco (2) — L. Miles, Leu.

SOROCO BOYS 66, PAONIA 58

Paonia 7-20-8-23 — 58

Soroco (9-4, 5-2) 17-12-15-22 — 66

Paonia — Noah Kropp 1 0-0 2, Blaine Escher 3 2-3 8, Adrian Penny 2 4-4 9, Trevor Walters 1 0-0 3, Taylor Bradford 3 0-0 7, Kacey Kropp 1 0-0 3, Josh Devlin 3 2-3 10, Daniel Ford 4 2-6 10, Anthony Roeber 2 2-6 6. Totals 20 12-22 58.

Soroco — Michael Rossi 0 6-8 6, Alex Estes 7 1-1 15, Cody Miles 4 6-9 14, Pie Lombardi 0 0-1 0, Leif Carlson 8 3-6 19, Matt Watwood 5 2-4 12. Totals 24 18-29 66.

3-pointers: Paonia (5) — Penny, Walters, Kropp, Devlin 2.

— You don’t see a lot of dunks in Colorado Class 2A high school basketball, but with about six minutes remaining in Soroco’s Saturday home game against Paonia, it didn’t take fans any time at all to realize what they were about to see.

Soroco got a steal and Rams senior Alex Estes, twice a medalist last spring in jumping events at the state track meet, got a jump down the court, gaining a quick 5 feet on anyone following him.

The roar started as he caught the pass, and it reached a climax as he flew up and threw down the dunk that served as the exclamation point on his team’s 66-58 victory against Paonia.

The Rams were good early and good late, and that proved enough to stuff the Eagles.

“In spurts we played really, really good,” Soroco coach Sam McLeod said. “I don’t want to say we played those spurts at a championship caliber, but when we’re playing like that, we can play with anyone.”

Soroco climbed to a 19-7 lead early in the second quarter but gave that all back and went into the half tied at 27.

The squad was good again to start the third quarter, and the Rams pieced together a dominating stretch that ensured they’d win the game.

Junior forward Leif Carlson scored 6 points, and Matt Watwood 3 during a 15-4 run that put Soroco up 42-31.

“They left me open on the back side a lot,” Carlson said. “Alex did a good job getting it to me, then a lot of the time they’d double down on Matt, and I’d be open.”

Carlson led the team in scoring for the second consecutive night, pouring in a career-high 19 points. Estes dropped in 15, Cody Miles 14 and Matt Watwood 12.

The win put the Rams at 9-4 on the season and 5-2 in the district. The squad travels Friday for a much-anticipated showdown against Hayden. The winner of that contest could grab the second seed in the district tournament.

“That game is huge for us,” Carlson said. “We don’t like losing to them, but we have a lot lately. It would be great to beat them.”

Soroco girls basketball can’t hang with Eagles

When a team is the best of the league by perhaps 30 points, there’s no such thing as a trap game. Sure enough, Paonia, the No. 1 team in Class 2A, didn’t fall into anything Saturday afternoon in a battle against the Soroco girls basketball team.

The Eagles easily handled the Rams, winning 81-40.

“Really, we played just as good as we did last night,” Soroco coach David Bruner said, referencing a 50-48 Friday night win against West Grand. “It was just that the competition was a lot different.”

Lindsay Miles led the Rams with 13 points, and Corey Snyder scored 8.

Paonia opened the game up early with a vicious full-court press and a sharp-shooting performance that left the Rams in a deep hole.

The score was 42-18 at halftime, and the Eagles only expanded upon that in the final two quarters.

Soroco (6-6, 2-3) returns to action Friday against Hayden.

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