Mountain Vista’s boy’s varsity basketball team gained the No. 6 seed, positioning them to play No. 11 Fairview High School on Wednesday, Feb. 24 with the home-turf advantage.
The Eagles average 67 points per game compared to Fairview’s 53.8, but it’s likely that the team’s strength on offense will massively overpower Fairview, as it did earlier in the season, leading them to score upwards of 80 points for a second time.
Vista also overshadows Fairview in rebounds, assists, steals and blocks per game.
The regular season match up between Vista and Fairview led to an 81-67 Eagle win in Boulder.
Since then, Fairview has lost eight of its last 11 games.
The Knights do, however, have 6’10” senior Frank Ryder scoring nearly 21 points per game, accounting for over 38 percent of the team’s total scoring. Ryder has signed to the University of San Diego to continue his basketball career.
On the flip side, the highest scorer for Vista scores less than a quarter of all points while the team has four players shooting over 10 points per game: Senior Trey Boeyink (16), juniors Jake Belknapp (17.4) and Isaac Essien (14.2) and sophomore Conner Staib (10.4).
The Eagles have managed to find a rhythm on defense as well. During Vista’s last regular-season game, Belknapp and senior Jason Trichler dominated on the defensive side of the ball, Trichler with 8 defensive rebounds (10 total) and Belknapp with 11 (15 total).
During the past four games, Vista has lacked a key asset on both sides of the ball as Essien has had to ride the bench thanks to a concussion. Having him back for playoffs is helpful for the team as he’s one of only two players with varsity post-season experience.
The motivation and dedication Vista showed on the court asserted the team’s willingness to push far into the playoffs. The home-gym advantage also leads most to think this Eagle victory over Fairview will be larger than the last as Vista has proved to be more impressive on its own turf.
The game winner will take on No. 3 Dakota Ridge at DRHS, as the team secured a first-round bye with a 16-7 record.
MVM Prediction: Vista takes the W, 85-62.