And then there were two.
After a hectic week of heartache which saw six Fort Collins Class 5A basketball teams booted from the State Bastketball Championships, only the Fort Collins High School girls and Fossil Ridge High School boys basketball teams remain on the hunt for a state title this season.
The No. 5 Lambkins (17-8) travel to face No. 1 Regis Jesuit (22-2), which is coming off a 75-33 win against Smoky Hill on Saturday. Fort Collins had a dominant win of its own, going on the road to beat Prairie View 63-49 Friday night.
Nicole Lange and crew will need to be in top form against Regis, which has two scorers averaging 15 or more points and has won 11 of its last 12.
If Fort Collins can pull off the upset, it shouldn’t come as a huge surprise. The Lambkins were the third-lowest seed among area high schools and have two more wins (2) than the other three teams combined.
On the boys’ side of things, Fossil Ridge looked strong against defending state champion Chaparral in a second-round home win Saturday.
After falling into a bit of a hole, the second-seeded SaberCats rallied. Hard. Fossil Ridge (20-4) went on a 24-5 run spanning the second and third quarters and led by as many as 15 near the end of the game before winning 58-51.
Unlike the girls’ side of the tournament, Fossil Ridge isn’t alone in winning a game. The Fort Collins boys topped Rock Canyon in a home game Wednesday before falling to Grand Junction on the other side of the Rockies on Saturday.
Fossil Ridge will face sixth-seed Arapahoe (18-7) in the SaberCats’ last home game this season. The winner moves on to the Elite 8.
Small but mighty (girls): Liberty Common and Heritage Christian punched their tickets to regional tournaments with Top 5 finishes at the Class 2A District 7 Tournament on Friday and Saturday. Liberty topped Heritage in a semifinal game Friday but lost Saturday to Highland in the title game – the second time Liberty has beaten Heritage this season – and Heritage lost its third-place game to Dayspring Christian.
Small but mighty (boys): Heritage Christian, Resurrection Christian and Liberty Common all move on to 2A regional tournaments after Top 5 finishes at the District 7 Tournament. The show-stopper paired Heritage and Resurrection. The Cougars pounced on the Eagles to take a commanding, 27-12 lead at halftime but Heritage battled back to win 55-49 in overtime.
Windsor through with winter: The Windsor girls lost just four games this season, to a stable of teams with a combined 86-12 record. The Wizards’ final loss, their only one in 2013, came against 25-0 Mesa Ridge on Saturday and ended the Wizards’ season in the Sweet 16 after they won the 4A Tri-Valley Conference. The boys lost to Broomfield in the Sweet 16 after a solid season in which they also won the Tri-Valley Conference.
Spring sports: There’s a smattering of spring sports action this week, but not all of it is CHSAA sanctioned. With rough weather lately, some teams haven’t been able to log the required five practices before their first games . Area schools are getting started in various spring sports, though, including track, girls tennis, girls soccer, boys swimming and golf. Varsity lacrosse will hold off until next week.