DENVER | The Grandview and Cherry Creek girls basketball teams walked off the floor at the Denver Coliseum Thursday night victorious and looking forward to a showdown for the Class 5A state championship.
It would have been the rubber match of the two Centennial League and Cherry Creek Schools powerhouses, who split the two-game league series, but now it won’t happen after the Colorado High School Activities Association made a late and difficult decision to cancel the remainder of the state basketball tournaments because of the Coronavirus pandemic.
“Everything we’ve done up to this point was to try and keep the experience of a state basketball tournament for our student participants and high school communities,” CHSAA commissioner Rhonda Blanford-Green said in a press release. “In the face of this unprecedented public health emergency, we are compelled to discontinue play in all tournaments.”
The loss of the University of Denver campus, site of the Class 3A state tournament, also factored into the decision.
While fourth-seeded Grandview (which topped Valor Christian) and second-seeded Cherry Creek (which beat Highlands Ranch) got to play their two 5A semifinals — with only “essential team personnel” and select family members in attendance — the 5A boys tournament next got a chance to resume.
The top-seeded Rangeview boys basketball team — which was scheduled to meet No. 5 Grandview Friday — was two wins from completing a repeat in 5A and was trying to finish off the first undefeated season for a Colorado boys team since 2014.
Earlier in the day, CHSAA put all spring sports practices and competition on hold until at least April 6.
Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports