Fort Lupton picks up road win against Wolverines

Jonathan Maness
Special to Colorado Community Media
Posted 2/8/22

THORNTON – Connor Moll knew what was at stake when he and the Fort Lupton Bluedevils took on the Skyview boys basketball team. The two squads were only separated by one game at the top of the …

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Fort Lupton picks up road win against Wolverines

Posted

THORNTON – Connor Moll knew what was at stake when he and the Fort Lupton Bluedevils took on the Skyview boys basketball team.

The two squads were only separated by one game at the top of the 4A/3A Colorado League when they faced off Feb. 3 at Skyview, and

Moll was determined to lead Fort Lupton to victory.   

The junior guard scored a game-high 23 points and impacted the game on both sides of the ball as the Bluedevils won 57-48.  

“We knew we had to win this,” Moll said. “It was a huge game.” 

Thursday’s contest featured eight lead changes, but it was Fort Lupton’s suffocating defense that proved to be the difference in the second half – keeping Skyview scoreless for nearly four minutes in the third quarter. 

“When you play in a league and face a team as often as we do, you tend to know tendencies,” said Fort Lupton coach Jim Roedel. “We were able to anticipate what they were going to do and be in their face.” 

Early on, it was Skyview that had it going. The Wolverines jumped out to an early lead. Behind the dominating play of Cash Croom, the Wolverines jumped out to an early lead. Croom hit back-to-back 3-pointers to give Skyview an early 8-2 advantage. However, Moll made his presence felt later in the quarter. He drew a pair of offensive fouls on Croom and then got a steal and fast-break basket to give Fort Lupton a one-point advantage after the first quarter.  

Dominick Sanchez hit a pair of treys for the Wolverines in the second quarter as they retook the lead and held a 21-20 lead at halftime.  

However, foul trouble slowly took Skyview out of the game in the second half. The Wolverines’ four top scorers, Sanchez, Croom, Xavier Moralez and Jorge Rodriguez all struggled with foul trouble, and Fort Lupton took advantage behind the dominating play of Bryce Andrews.  

Andrews scored 10 points in the quarter in a variety of ways. He hit a basket from deep, scored on a fastbreak and pushed the lead to 39-30 with a putback.  

Diego Medina extended the lead to 12 in the fourth quarter for the Bluedevils, but Skyview quickly answered back. Jacob Garcia, Croom and Rodriguez each hit from deep to cut the lead to 52-48 late in the contest, but Maddax Farrer and Moll sealed the victory after converting from the charity stripe.  

Free-throw shooting played a big part in the game. Fort Lupton shot 34 free throws, and Skyview attempted only eight.  

“Foul trouble really hurt us, because we don’t have a lot of depth,” Skyview coach Steve Hackenberg said. “But I feel the difference in the game was our turnovers and the free-throw line. They were attacking the rim, and we shot jump shots.” 

The victory put Fort Lupton (10-5 overall), Skyview (12-5) and Eagle Ridge Academy (13-2) at 4-1 in league play, with each team having two games left. Fort Lupton and ERA faced off Monday, after press time. Skyview and ERA will play Thursday, Feb. 10, at 7 p.m. in Brighton.

Croom lead Skyview with 22 points, while Andrews scored 16 for Fort Lupton and Farrer had 10 rebounds to lead the Bluedevils. 

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