Both Cripple Creek-Victor basketball teams advanced to the finals of the 12th Annual Kodiak Klassic Dec. 15 at the Colorado Springs School. Both came up short in their bid to haul home the first-place hardware.
The Pioneers boys were tied 25-25 at halftime, but lost 64-53.
The CC-V girls lost 34-24. The Pioneers were down 12-0 after one quarter, but outscored the Kodiaks 24-22 the rest of the way.
CC-V teams have made the Kodiak Klassic an annual affair. The two-day tournament brings together four schools in a pleasant environment at the school, which is located about one mile from the famed Broadmoor Hotel.
CC-V’s boys dropped to 2-3 after the tournament. There is a lot of optimism among Pioneers players that this will be a successful season.
“The beginning of the season is always the toughest part,” said senior guard David Snare, a four-year starter who scored 15 points against CSS. “This is when you’re trying to work out your kinks and get evened out and get things set.”
Senior guard Angel St. George scored a team-high 17 points against CSS and is the Pioneers’ leading scorer on the season.
“Our plan is make it into the (state) playoffs,” he said. “Most of us have been playing together since seventh grade. We all know how to work together.”
Senior Junior Clinton is among the five seniors on the team.
“I like our enthusiasm toward the sport,” he said. “We have the skill. We have the chemistry.
“It’s mostly a mindset for us. We a share the same goal. We all want a banner this year.”
The CC-V girls advanced to the championship game by defeating Edison, 30-19, for their fist win of the season.
The Pioneers are again led by Hope Davies, who was named MVP of the Kodak Klassic. Davies believes the Pioneers can have success this season, but she said there are some areas that need improvement.
“We do a pretty good job of communicating with each other,” she said. “But we need to get in the gym. A lot of times we have four or five girls at practice. That’s not going to cut it.”
Pioneers senior guard Alycia Jensen has worked hard to improve her game.
“I didn’t know that much about the sport, but over the summer I worked so hard to get better,” she said. “Just being around Hope and hearing what she has to say has made me a better player.”
CC-V girls coach Chris Spoerl said his team is slowing coming together.
“We’re very inexperienced,” he said. “We graduated five seniors from last year and we’re battling some injuries to start this season.
“December is my least-favorite month. I’m still trying to figure out all the different parts.”