DENVER – It wasn’t a stretch for Resurrection Christian to respond when DSST: Montview sent double teams — and sometimes even triple teams — at Jacob Barker during the Class 4A Great 8 on Saturday.

With the Metro State commit somewhat limited, the Cougars took advantage of quick swings and skip passes. But above all, they dominated on the offensive glass when the Knights were out of position and they parlayed that 19-3 advantage into a 72-54 victory.

“I don’t know how many second-chance points we got, but it was a lot,” Resurrection Christian coach Ryan Yoder said, referencing the Cougars’ 24 points on extra opportunities. “Credit to Jacob Barker, Graham Riggs, Marcus Phillips and the rest of our guys for just crashing. The reason that happens is that we send two guards back (in transition), so these other three crash with reckless abandon.”

Riggs was the main beneficiary of intense focus on Barker, putting up a career-high 21 points with eight rebounds — seven on the offensive glass. Phillips finished with a double-double, posting 16 points with 11 boards. Barker even had 13 points and five rebounds amid the intense scrutiny.

For Riggs, his scoring outburst was powered by something simple.

“When they take away our bigs like Jacob or Cade (Crutcher), that’s my opportunity to slip in there,” Riggs said. “I like to shoot, so if I’m open, I’ll shoot it.”

The Cougars pushed their lead to double digits by the second quarter and led for all but a 28-second stretch midway through the first quarter. They outscored the Knights 52-26 in the paint.

Resurrection Christian is headed back to the Final 4, where last year they lost to Holy Family in the state championship. Riggs said the Cougars are motivated to avenge that loss.

“We have a different fire this year coming back,” Riggs said. “We want to win it all and we’re going to. We just came to take care of business. No messing around.”

Kent Denver 74, DSST: Green Valley Ranch 56

(Dan Mohrmann/

With both leading scorers — the Sun Devils’ Caleb Fay and the Raptors’ Jovonnie Babineaux — in foul trouble by the third quarter, it was top-seeded Kent Denver that showcased more depth. That wasn’t a surprise to Sun Devils coach Todd Schayes, whose varsity squad normally includes 17 players, but was only allowed to suit up 14 players during the state tournament.

“We play them all,” Schayes said. “The system we run, it’s not just about one guy. It’s five in, five out, and we hope our depth wears other teams down. We’re blessed to have that many kids that if somebody gets in foul trouble, we can just bring somebody in and we hope that it’s a seamless substitution. We just keep on keeping on.”

Kent Denver led by double digits by the second quarter. A brief rally allowed DSST: Green Valley Ranch to cut the lead to eight points midway through the third, but the Sun Devils cruised from there.

Fay led all scorers with nine points in the first half before foul trouble sent him to the bench for a large chunk of the third quarter. After that, Fay netted nine points in the fourth quarter and finished with 21 points. Perhaps the biggest highlight of his late surge came on an alley-oop tossed to Fay by Elvis Lloyd, the younger son of former Denver Broncos receiver Brandon Lloyd.

Eleven different players scored for the Sun Devils, with Zach Morgan adding 10 points on 4-of-6 shooting and Devan Johnson adding eight points.

Shalom Abioye paced the Raptors with 21 points while Babineaux finished with 11 points. Tong Bot, who fouled out early in the fourth quarter, finished with nine points.