The Monument/Dayville Tigers had a season of growth, but it came to a close at the Feb. 16-18 1A-8 High Desert District Tournament.
Monument/Dayville lost a 54-46 match Friday to the Prairie City Panthers.
The Tigers, led by head coach Jeff Schafer, met up with their Panther rivals twice this season, losing close matches each time.
Last Friday was yet another close clash between the teams.
At the half, the Tigers had a 23-22 lead, coming back from a 12-point deficit in the first quarter.
In the third, the teams tied the score 33-33 with two minutes left in the quarter. Then Prairie City pulled ahead 39-34, going into the fourth.
The game was marked by a battle beyond the arc in the fourth.
Tiger Tanner Walczyk scored two three-pointers, and his teammate Hayden Schafer hit one — back and forth with Panther player Levi Burke, who landed four three-point shots.
In the end, Prairie City was able to keep the lead for the win.
“They fought hard,” said Monument/Dayville head coach Jeff Schafer. “Prairie City is a deep team and well coached. We’re just still young, but they did a great job. All the kids did a great job and played hard. We always have faith in this team. When they work as a team they always do a great job — we can beat anybody, but Prairie City just kept fighting.”
The Tigers lost their final chance to reach the state playoffs as they were defeated 43-34 by the Adrian Antelopes. The game decided third place and the opportunity to advance.
“They played hard,” Schafer said. “They’re a young team, and I’ll look forward to coaching them next year. They did a great job.”
High Desert League All-Tournament selections:
First Team: Hayden Schafer
Second Team: Tanner Walczyk
Monument/Dayville vs. Prairie City
Hayden Schafer: 14 (three three-pointers)
Tanner Walczyk: 10 (three-three-pointers)
Cody Kluser: 9 (3-6 free throws)
John Ramirez: 5 (one three-pointer)
Drew Wilburn: 4
GW Clark: 3 (3-6 free throws)
Gabe Walker: 1
Monument/Dayville vs. Adrian
Hayden Schafer: 13 (three three-pointers)
John Ramirez: 6
Drew Wilburn: 6
Cody Kluser: 6
Tanner Walczyk: 3 (one three-pointer)