AURORA | Preview capsules for the matchup between No. 47 Douglas County and No. 18 Cherokee Trail in the first round of the Class 5A boys state basketball playoffs on Feb. 22, 2017. Full 5A state pairings and schedules, here:
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AURORA CLASS 5A BOYS STATE BASKETBALL 1ST ROUND PREVIEW CAPSULE
NO. 47 DOUGLAS COUNTY (10-13) AT NO. 18 CHEROKEE TRAIL (12-11), 6 P.M.
Breakdown: This Chauncey Billups Region matchup features a Douglas County team that finished the regular season on a four-game losing streak against a Cherokee Trail squad that dropped its last two regular season contests…Douglas County lost to Greeley West in the first round of last season’s 5A state playoffs after missing out on postseason play the seven seasons before that. Coach Earl Boykins’ Huskies take balance to a new level, as no fewer than eight players averaged six points per contest during the regular season, with only senior Nicholas Scrivens and sophomore Davon Walker cracking double figures at 10.9 and 10.5 points per game, respectively. The 6-foot-4 Scrivens is also Douglas County’s leading rebounder at 5.1 boards per contest, while Walker tops the team in assists (2.5) and steals (1.7) per contest…Cherokee Trail made it to the 5A Great 8 last season before losing to Rangeview and has won at least one postseason game in three of the past five seasons. Coach Morgan Gregory’s Cougars dropped their last two games of the regular season, including a 62-56 loss at top-seed Eaglecrest on Feb. 17 and have going 4-4 in their last eight overall. Senior G Jaizec Lottie missed a four-game stretch early in Centennial League play, but has scored 12 points or more in all 10 games since his return to the lineup, including a season-high 32 in a win over eighth-seeded Smoky Hill on Feb. 1. Lottie finished the regular season as the second-leading scorer in Aurora with an average of 20.1 points per game, while junior G Tyson Rodgers is next with an average of 9.2 points per game and senior C Ian Kelly (7.9), junior F Deon Barfield (7.8) and senior G Tyrone Patterson (7.8) all contribute regularly on offense as well. The high-flying Barfield leads the Cougars in rebounds (5.0) and blocked shots (1.0) per game, while Lottie paces the squad in assists (4.1) and steals (1.8) per contest. Senior G KJ Sapp is back in the lineup after missing all but two games due to injury…Winner: The Douglas County-Cherokee Trail winner moves on to a second round matchup at No. 15 Rampart (17-6) Feb. 25. Neither team has played the Rams this season.