The Class 3A boys state tournament bracket moves into the state semifinals on Friday with games set for 5:30pm and 8:30pm this evening at Hamilton Gym. Colorado Preps will provide in-game updates and final scores on both games plus recaps of the action.
To track scores, please click here for our boys’ basketball scoreboard and game recaps are available below.
Upset of Joy - Faith Christian Stuns Kent Denver
Kent Denver came into tonight's match up against Faith Christian coming off a comeback with against Basalt yesterday and boasting a six point victory over the Eagles in the regular season. Faith Christian had other plans. Entering the game as the 13th seed, the match up against top-seeded Kent Denver was daunting, but Faith Christian wouldn't let up.
Facing their largest deficit of 15 points with 1:45 to go in the first half, Faith Christian added four more points to begin the 3rd down, 30-19. It took two and a half minutes before either team scored on the other side of the break, but a lay-in by Faith Christian's Jonah Gardner got the scoring started. The Eagles cut the lead to seven with 4:28 to go in the quarter, but Max Mehlman of Kent Denver, kept Faith Christian at bay. With thirty seconds to go in the 3rd, the Eagles were down by nine, but a 5-2 run to close out the quarter gave the Sun Devils a slim 41-35 lead entering the 4th.
Benjamin Hawkins of Faith Christian got the Eagles rolling to start the 4th with a jumper, and a perfect trip to the line by Garrett Pott brought the score to 41-39, Kent Denver. The quarter went back and forth between Mehlam, who ended with 17, and Faith Christian's Hawkins and Gardner, with 15 and 19 respectively. The Eagles drew back-to-back offensive fouls and Jonathan Hardcastle made it count by drilling a three-point basket to put his team up for the first time, with 3:40 to go. Ten seconds later, Benan Ersek made one of two from the line for Kent Denver to tie the game at 44. The two teams traded baskets, but with 33 seconds to play, Gardner was fouled and made both at the line, putting Faith Christian up 50-48. The score held up and sends Faith Christian to the championship game tomorrow night, where they will face the winner of Sterling/Colorado Springs Christian.
Three-Point Clinic Sends Sterling to Finals
The final game of the night was one for the ages. The Sterling Tigers put on a show, scoring 11 three-pointers to advance to the finals against Faith Christian tomorrow evening. The Colorado Springs Christian Lions were not to be undone, scoring five of their own from beyon the arc - a total of 16 three-pointers were made tonight to keep fans on their feet and cheering loud.
Sterling only had the lead twice tonight; Engesser started the scoring tonight with his first of a game-high 28 points, and again with 2:55 left in the first half. The Lions largest lead, of three, followed and yielded a 18-17 CSCS lead at half. Sterling was quiet in the second with only five points, but scored 31 in the final two frames.
The third quarter began with back-to-back threes by Sterling, by Carter Keil and Riley Schaefer. Mateo Mendoza contributed his only points of the night for Colorado Springs Christian to get them within three with 5:20 in the third. Engesser hit two at the line to close the lead to 23-22. Colton Shalla found Austin Bornhoft inside for a layup and the Tigers' second largest lead of the night, 33-24. Engesser narrowly misses a three-quarter court shot to end the third, 33-27 Sterling.
To open the fourth, Engesser went on a 5-0 run in 37 seconds to put the Lions within one, but a lack of help offensively proved to be the closest Colorado Springs Christian would be for the rest of the game. With 6:25 remaining, Sterling hit their second three-point shot of the quarter and pushed the lead to 39-34. A brilliant lose ball save by Brodie Hume set up a wide open layup to give Sterling a 12 point lead with 1:37 to go - their largest lead of the night. With 20 seconds to go, Hume hit both from the line, giving Sterling their 51st point and a 51-43 victory to send them to the state final against improbable Faith Christian tomorrow evening at 6 p.m.