Boys and Girls Teams Fall to Eaton
By Dan Karpiel
Both the Berthoud High girls and boys basketball teams lost their respective contests with the Eaton Reds on Tuesday evening. The boys team lost 70-56 while girls fell 62-42. The losses are first of the season both Spartan teams in 3A Patriot League play.
The boys team (6-4, 2-1) got off to a rough start as they found themselves trailing 14-6 after the first period. Berthoud rebounded nicely in the second period, however, out-scoring Eaton 21-12 to go into halftime with a slim 27-26 lead. Yet Eaton (8-2, 3-0) demonstrated why they are a team with aspirations for state competition in the second half as they out-scored Berthoud 44-29.
Eaton’s game plan appeared to center around making life difficult for Berthoud’s leading scorers. The Reds held seniors Zach Ruebesam and Greg Hutchins to 13 and 11 points, respectively, below each player’s season average.
While Berthoud bested Eaton from three-point range, draining eight treys to the Reds’ four, Eaton was stronger from inside the arc, out-scoring Berthoud 48 to 34, as well as from the free throw line where they sank four more foul shots than did the Spartans.
The real advantage for Eaton, however, came when they were playing defense. In addition to holding Berthoud’s leading scorers below season averages, the Reds forced the Spartans to commit a whopping 21 turnovers. Five blocks and an astounding 14 steals by Eaton, most of which came in the second half, prevented the Spartans from being able to match the Reds offensive output.
Forced errors and stifling defense on Eaton’s part also told the story in the girls’ game. The Lady Spartans turned the ball over a staggering 37 times, fully 20 more than Eaton. The Reds swiped 19 steals to Berthoud’s 7 and out-rebounded the Lady Spartans 27-22. Eaton was able to beat Berthoud on the boards on their end of the floor where the Reds tallied 11 offensive rebounds and thus more opportunities for second-chance points.
The Cheney sisters did most of the damage for Eaton offensively as junior Leah led all scorers with 22 points and sophomore Kayla added 13. Senior Karli Jelden contributed 12 points and was perfect from the stripe, sinking all five of her free-throws.
For Berthoud, sophomore guard Kendall Baker led the Lady Spartans with 11 points while Sammi Kouns added nine and senior Dillon Fagler contributed eight points to go with her team-high three steals.
With the loss, the Lady Spartans fall to .500 on the 2011-12 season at 5-5 and 2-1 in the 3A Patriot League. The Berthoud girls will play their next two contests out on the eastern plains as the team travels to Brush on Friday and to Strasburg next Tuesday.