Steel City Spike Tournament finals
Rampart def. Air Academy 26-24, 25-18
At Pueblo East: Don't count Rampart (17-5) out of anything quite yet.
The Pikes Peak region 5A No. 2 Rams beat 4A No. 3 Air Academy (18-4) in the Steel City Spike Tournament finals as they won their 14th consecutive set and rolled to their eighth straight victory.
Coach Nancy Pellow called the finale a nice bit of revenge.
"Air Academy beat us earlier this season and we wanted to get them back," said Pellow, alluding to the Kadets' 3-1 win in early September. "We are getting where we want to be at the right time."
No kidding. All of a sudden, the Rams could find themselves in a three-way tie atop the 5A Metro League standings, along with Pine Creek and Doherty, if the Eagles beat the Spartans on Wednesday.
If that happens, the winner of the league will be decided by the team with the highest percentage of sets won divided by total sets played.
Rampart also swept Pueblo Central, Pueblo South and Pueblo Centennial early in the day to reach the finals.
Rampart has been streaking ever since its heartbreaking loss to Doherty at the start of October.
In that game, the Rams rallied from a 14-7 deficit in the fifth set to tie it at 14 before losing two points later.
Since, Rampart has won 20 of its 22 sets and beaten league rivals Pine Creek, Fountain-Fort Carson and Liberty.
For Air Academy, Ashley Pagan had a team-high 37 kills in the tournament and drilled five aces in the semifinals victory over Centennial to help Air Academy to a second-place finish.
The Kadets also beat Fountain-Fort Carson and Widefield. Jordan Pingel added 20 kills and 27 digs, and Bryce Schwartz had nine aces and 85 assists throughout.
Air Academy had its eight-match win streak snapped against Rampart in the finals.
The Kadets finished third in the 4A Pikes Peak Athletic Conference behind Lewis-Palmer and Cheyenne Mountain.
Pine Creek def. Thornton 25-6, 25-13, 25-16
At Pine Creek: In the wake of a brutal upcoming schedule, 5A No. 3 Pine Creek (12-5) kept form and delivered another dominating win.
Junior Megan Hamstad had four kills, three aces and 19 assists en route to the Eagles' fourth win in a row.
Mackenzie Swan and Alyssa Brinton added seven kills apiece, and Kristina Susak added four aces to snap Thornton's three-game win steak.
The Eagles, who have only lost one set in their past four matches, end their season with 4A Cheyenne Mountain (15-2) on Monday and league-rival Doherty (15-3) on Wednesday.
If the Eagles beat Penn State-commit Haleigh Washington and the Spartans on Wednesday, it will force a three-way tie atop the 5A Metro League between Doherty, Pine Creek and Rampart.
Vista Ridge 49, Liberty 0
At D-20 Stadium: Vista Ridge (5-3 overall, 3-2 4A Pikes Peak League) is beating its opponents 154-7 on its current three-game win streak.
Saturday, Elway Tubbs went 21-for-28 passing with five touchdowns, Jaquan Overbey had 240 total yards of offense and the defense knocked around Liberty (1-7, 0-5) and secured its second consecutive shutout.
It was over early. The Wolves gained nearly 300 total yards at the half to take a 35-0 lead against the struggling Lancers, who have lost six games in a row and have been blanked in four of them.
Vista Ridge's stout defense was led by Tyler Hunt's 12 tackles and Jaelyn Penn's three sacks.
Cotopaxi 25, Hanover 24
At Cotopaxi: Hanover (5-3 overall, 3-1 Southwest) lost by the slimmest of margins in the A-6 Southwest standings.
The Hornets lost by a point, giving Cotopaxi (6-2, 4-0) the league title.
Buena Vista 49, Ellicott 7
At Ellicott: Ellicott (3-5 overall, 2-4 1A Tri-Peaks) ran into a buzz saw against undefeated Buena Vista (8-0, 6-0).
The Demons, who can win the league title with a victory over Colorado Springs Christian School next week, have scored more than 30 points in all but one of their games and held their opponent to fewer than 14 points in all but two.
Colorado Springs Christian School 43, Custer County 12
At CSCS: Jacob Santarelli ran for three touchdowns in the second half as Colorado Springs Christian School (6-2 overall, 5-1 1A Tri-Peaks) overcame an early deficit to rout Custer County (4-4, 3-3) and set up a winner-takes-league showdown against undefeated Buena Vista (8-0, 6-0) next weekend.
Lions coach Jay Kersey said his team will have to play the best game of the season to have a chance at the league crown.
"BV is fast everywhere - even their linemen are fast," Kersey said. "We can't have the mistakes we've had in our other games. We have to play our best game to win."
CSCS has won by double digits in each game on its four-game winning streak.