It wasn’t exactly a banner season for Teller County high school basketball teams this winter. But it was a fun year none-the-less as each of the four squads battled to the end.
“We had a ton of growing pains, but I’m happy with my team’s progress,” Woodland Park boys’ coach Joel Herman said.
The Woodland Park boys finished 2-20, 0-12 in the Class 4A Metro League. The Panthers lost their final 13 games.
“If you look at the wins and losses, and you see that we lost 13 in a row to close out the season, that’s tough,” Herman said. “Defensively we had a tough time boxing out and getting rebounds. And offensively we didn’t get consistently put the ball in the basket when we were in the paint.”
Woodland Park’s victories were over Salida (48-33 on Dec. 16) and Vanguard Charter (43-42 on Jan. 8).
The bulk of Herman’s team was underclassmen. Junior Sam Hopfe paced the offense, averaging 9.5 points per game while pulling down 5.5 rebounds.
Hopfe had some impressive individual games. He scored a career-high 30 points against Coronado on Jan. 30. He had 20 points and 10 rebounds against Mesa Ridge on Jan. 21. IN the win over Salida he had 19 points and a career-high 16 rebounds. Five other games he scored double figures.
“Sam is a guy who liked to pull up from 15 feet and shoot it,” Herman said. “He had a some great games. We just need him to be a little more consistent next season.”
Sophomore guard Dominik Cunico was next in scoring with 6.3 per game, including a 25-point effort against Dolores Huerta Prep on Dec. 7.
Junior forward Dakota Herman averaged 6.2 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.9 assists.
“Dominik did a great job of passing the ball and pulling up and shooting, but he was streaky,” Herman said. “Dakota could play all over the place and he did a good job of getting the ball to the other guys.”
Senior Randy Westfall averaged 5.9 points and 5.5 rebounds and proved to be a quality leaders along with fellow senior Robert Ensley.
“I’m proud of my two seniors,” Herman said.
Herman is optimistic about the future of his team.
“Dakota, Sam and Justin (Logsdon) will give us senior leadership,” Herman said.
“Dominik, Matt Cox and Joey Ereon will have a year under their belt. A lot of the younger guys will grow and improve as well.”
The Woodland Park girls posted a 5-18 overall record, 2-10 in league. Both league victories were over Coronado, including a 39-31 on the last day of the season.
The Panthers had as well-balanced offensive attack. Junior Lexie Comer led the way by averaging 7.2 points per game. She was followed by Katie Stunkard (6.6), Darian SanFelice (5.8). Jeannette Worscheck (5.4), Jenny Sells (5.2), Kaitlyn Kemp (4.4), Alexa Garrick (3.4) and Kelsey Arseneau (3.2).
The Cripple Creek-Victor boys’ basketball team went 1-14, 0-9 in the Class 2A/1A West Central League.
Senior Toby Wuellner paced the Pioneers with 6.6 points per game, while pulling down 8-6 rebounds. Junior CJ Salazar added 5.3 points and a team-leading 10-1 rebounds.
Also with fine offensive seasons were senior David Burks (5.0 points per game), sophomore Mason Berger (4.7 PPG) and freshman Danny Irelan (4.5 PPG).
The CC-V girls posted a 2-13 record, 0-9 in league.
Junior Madison Berger had a banner year, leading the team with 12.3 points, while recording 2.3 steals.
Also with impressive seasons were junior Mikaela Schell (6.6 points, 6.0 rebounds, 2.0 steals), senior Maggie Steele (3.5 points, team-leading 9.5 rebounds), senior Karense Zaccardi (4.7 PPG, 5.3 RPG) and senior Sarah Wywias (3.7 PPG, 4. RPG).