Matthew McGinley is the starting point guard and leading scorer for Heritage Christian Academy.
Wyatt Simon fills the same two roles for Resurrection Christian High School.
Tuesday night, the former teammates in a feeder program for Rocky Mountain High will square off in a key Mile High League matchup of two of the state’s top Class 2A boys basketball teams. Tip-off is 7:30 p.m. at Heritage Christian.
McGinley, a senior, is averaging 17.7 points a game – which ranks 20th in the state among Class 2A players – for Heritage Christian (10-0, 2-0 MHL), ranked No. 8 in the state by The Denver Post. Simon, also a senior, averages 15.3 points a game – 30th in the state – for Resurrection Christian (7-3, 2-0), ranked No. 6.
“We’ve been battling each other for a while now,” McGinley said.
Those battles started in practice on a Rocky Mountain Junior Lobos team that advanced to the quarterfinals of the Gold Crown League’s Silver Division state championship tournament. The following year, each moved on to join their current high school teammates.
Heritage Christian’s Joel Barreras also was on that team. Two other Heritage Christian seniors – Ryan Hurley and Jake Huebner – played with Simon in the Rocky Mountain Fever club program. Simon always has been a relentless on-ball defender. But lately, he’s become just as reliable on the offensive end as the top scorer on one of the state’s top teams.
WIZARDS CLIMB INTO TOP 10: Riding a five-game winning streak the Windsor girls basketball team has cracked the top 10 in the 4A state rankings.
The Wizards (11-3, 5-0 Tri-Valley League) are No. 10 this week in The Denver Post basketball poll. Windsor hasn’t lost since returning from winter break and holds a two-game lead over Berthoud in the TVL. The two teams play at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Windsor.
Both the Fossil Ridge boys and girls teams dropped out of the top 10 this week.
LOCAL STAT LEADERS: Several area players are at or near the top of the scoring charts in their respective leagues. Poudre’s Lake Reed is the top scorer in the 5A Front Range league at 24.7 points a game. Reed is second in all of 5A in scoring behind the 25.3 points from Josh Perkins from Regis. Following outbursts of 31 and 22 points in the past two games Ryan French of Fort Collins is up to third in the FRL with 19.8 points a game.
Windsor’s Dylan Ochsner sits at second in the TVL at 18 points per game.
On the girls side Anna Ernst from Rocky Mountain is second in the FRL at 18.4 points a game, which is also good enough for third in all of 5A.
The leaders are based on statistics reported to Max Preps.
ICE IN THE VEINS: Heritage Christian’s Micaela Bush sank three free throws with one second left in regulation to tie the game and send it to overtime last Tuesday night against Front Range Christian. Heritage Christian won 44-40 in OT.
“I didn’t say too much to her before; you can’t say too much to girls,” Heritage Christian coach Joe Packard said. “They (Front Range Christian) called a timeout to try and ice her. I told her that the team believes in her and she went up and nailed them. I knew she could do it. She made 23 in practice a couple weeks ago. What she did was pretty cool. I know I couldn’t have done that under pressure like she was.”