LITTLETON — Santana Sabus didn’t look like a freshman when she stepped up to the free-throw line with 21.7 seconds remaining Wednesday night.

Ralston Valley’s leading scorer hit nothing by the bottom of the net to give the Mustangs a 63-59 lead in the final seconds to ice the Class 6A Jeffco League girls basketball game against Columbine.

“We practice that everyday in practice,” Sabus said about knocking down the critical free throws late. “It’s nothing new.”

Sophomore Mia Alfaro made 1-of-2 free throws with 6.3 seconds to go, giving Ralston Valley a key 64-59 road victory. The Mustangs (11-6, 3-2 in 6A Jeffco) remains 2-game behind leading-league Valor Christian (13-3, 6-0) in the loss column.

Valor took care of business with a road win itself. The Eagles defeated Arvada West on Wednesday night to stay undefeated in conference play.

Photo by Dennis Pleuss/Jeffco Public Schools

“We need to work to get second-place in league now,” Sabus said. “Win as many games as we can. We want to win out.”

Sabus continued her impressive freshman campaign with her ninth 20-plus point game of the season. The smooth shooting Sabus finished with a team-high 20 points.

A trio of sophomores — Sammi Madden (14 points), Karsyn Kline (8 points) and Alfaro (10 points) — were big as Ralston Valley pulled out the road victory. Madden and Alfaro combined for six 3-pointers.

“Our young girls stepped up,” Bahl said. “In these games it’s nice to see them group up a little bit. There are still a few moments where I would like us to get better at situational basketball.”

Ralston Valley led throughout, but Columbine (12-7, 4-2) rallied behind senior Emily Allison in the fourth quarter. Allison’s 3-point play with 2:11 left in the fourth quarter tied the game at 56-56.

“Even when stuff wasn’t going our way we fought,” Columbine coach Keegan Bell said. “We didn’t fold. We continued to push, and attack.”

Allison finished with a game-high 21 points, but a 3-pointer by Alfaro with under a minute to play gave the Mustangs the lead for good.

“They all fought and competed until the end,” Bahl said. “I’m really proud of them for fighting.”

Bahl went big having junior Kailey Townsend and Kline both on the court at the same time. Townsend had 6 points all in the first half and Kline had 8 points, including two huge turnaround jumpers in the paint in the fourth quarter.

“It’s a great league. Anyone can win on any given night,” Bell said. “She (Bahl) does a great job. They are a really good team. I thought our team battled and didn’t give up.”

The Rebels also had a trio of sophomores with a nice games. Jordyn Washington (12 points), Kortny Brock (9 points) and Mason Abraham (9 points) helped out in the scoring department.

Columbine goes on the road this week for a Saturday game at Lakewood before getting a second shot at Valor on the Rebels’ home court Wednesday, Feb. 7.

“I think this was really good experience for us,” Bell said. “You hate to drop one in league, but hopefully we’ll be ready to rock next time.”

Ralston Valley is back on the court Monday, Feb. 5, at Arvada West High School. The Mustangs face their arch-rival for the second time this season. Ralston Valley edge A-West 48-44 back on Jan. 12.

“We are fired up about it already,” Sabus said of facing the Wildcats on Monday.