MEEKER I Since ending the regular season with an 8-4 league record and finishing sixth in the league standings, the Meeker High School girls’ basketball team had to play two must-win games last week to enter the regional tournament. They did what they needed.
The girls won both with West Grand being the most recent. Meeker will now enter the Region 3 tournament as the No. 5 seed and will play Ignacio on Friday at 3 p.m., at Grand Junction Central High School.
“We are used to the pressure now from playing two must-win games,” Meeker head coach Greg Chintala said of the wins over Hayden and West Grand, where the wins ended their seasons and extended Meeker’s.
After defeating Hayden, Meeker traveled to Kremmling on Thursday to play the West Grand Mustangs, and they made a statement with a 57-36 win.
“After a sluggish start, our defense just locked down in the second and third quarters,” coach Chintala said. “They played some really solid defense.”
After taking a 12-10 lead at the end of the first quarter, Meeker scored 18 in the second and only allowed West Grand to score eight, giving Meeker a 30-18 lead at halftime.
The girls scored 13 in the third quarter and put the game away by only allowing the Mustangs to score two in the quarter.
Sydney Hughes and Reese Pertile each scored 18 against West Grand. Hughes finished with 10 steals and Pertile pulled down nine rebounds.
“Sydney was hurt early in the week, and Reese really stepped up,” Chintala said. “Everyone did a good job. We have different options now and they make us a little more dangerous.”
Meeker senior Megan Parker scored seven, Halle Ahrens scored five, Jamie McLaughlin and Jenna Walsh each added four and Madi Shults made a free throw.
The winner of the Meeker/Ignacio game will play the winner of the Cedaredge/Vail Christian game, with the top two teams advancing to the 2015 Colorado State Girls’ Basketball Championships.
“We are looking forward to the opportunity,” coach Chintala said.