DENVER — When Kinsey Trujillo wandered through the fanfare clutching the Roosevelt High School girls basketball team’s Class 5A championship trophy, it was the first time she’d slowed down in two quarters.

After a slow second quarter where both teams combined for 13 points, the Roughriders pushed the pace in the third quarter, using the 20-point swing to secure an eventual 54-44 victory over Windsor and the first title in the program’s history.

“At halftime, coach said we were playing scared, which isn’t really like us,” Trujillo said. “It was probably the nerves. He said to go out there and attack them, draw some fouls, and we’ll shoot the free throws.”

The No. 2 Roughriders trailed 20-15 at the half as the No. 4 Wizards stalled to pull their opponents out of their zone defense, including an uninterrupted 20 seconds near midcourt.

The results were mixed, mostly drawing a negative response from Roughriders fans, but Roosevelt coach Enoch Miller said it helped galvanize Roosevelt’s aggression in the third quarter.

“They slowed us down in the second quarter and we tried to play them man-to-man like we have the past few games,” Miller said. “But they’re much quicker and smaller, so we had to go to our zone press. That changed the pace and got us back to where we wanted it.”

(Doug Ottewill/

Defensive pressure and transition offense pushed the pace for both teams and swung the game for Roosevelt. During a diving scramble for a loose ball, Ryanne Bahnsen-Price found herself on the hardwood with the basketball. With her feet in the air and her upper body positioned in a half-crunch, she flung the ball over her head on a blind pass to a streaking Trujillo for a layup. Windsor answered with a quick bucket, but then Bahnsen-Price knocked down a 3-pointer to give the Roughriders a 24-23 edge. Brynn Price extended the advantage with a pair of free throws and, on the next possession, rattled in a trey from the top of the arc. By the time the run was complete, Roosevelt led 35-28.

At the midway point in the fourth quarter, the Roughriders led by double digits and controlled proceedings the rest of the way.

Bahnsen-Price paced Roosevelt with 13 points, while Kyla Hollier added 10 points with a team-high nine rebounds. Madison Moyers was 0-for-7 from the field but got all of her nine points from the free-throw line, shooting at a 9-of-10 clip. Price also finished with nine points, two-thirds of which came from beyond the arc, and Brooklyn Meze chipped in eight points.

Windsor had success during the slower portions of the game, committing only 11 turnovers through four quarters even as the pace ramped up. Two Wizards finished in double figures: Sam Darnell, who had 13 points, and Reyleigh Hess, who had 10 points.

Roosevelt, meanwhile, shot 25% from the field in the first half before stretching that mark to 58% in the second half. They also took 26 free throws after halftime — making 15 — compared to a 5-for-8 mark in the first half.

The Roughriders’ roster features no seniors and they’ll likely return most of their state championship team next season.

“I’m so proud of these kids,” Miller said. “What an amazing group of girls that I’m blessed to coach.”