Boys Basketball: Rangeview holds off Mountain Range, earns shot at top seed Eaglecrest in 5A playoffs

Rangeview’s Ryan Ongala, left, Matthew Johnson, center, and Christian Speller cut off Mountain Range’s Mike Polson in the lane during the third quarter of the Raiders’ 72-64 win over the Mustangs in a 2017 Class 5A boys state basketball first round playoff game on Feb. 22, 2017, at Rangeview High School. Johnson scored 33 points to help the Raiders advance to a Feb. 25 second round contest against Eaglecrest. (Photo by Courtney Oakes/Aurora Sentinel)

AURORA | A postseason matchup that took five rounds to make last season needed only one to come to fruition this season as Rangeview and Eaglecrest will again meet in the Class 5A boys state basketball tournament.

The Raiders and Raptors met in the semifinals of last season’s state tournament, but the rematch comes in the second round this time as 32nd-seeded Rangeview earned another shot at top-seeded Eaglecrest with a 72-64 home victory over No. 33 Mountain Range Wednesday night.

Senior guards Matthew Johnson and Donyvan Jackson took turns shredding the Mustangs’ defense in the second half on their way to a combined 44 points for coach Shawn Palmer’s Raiders (16-8), who survived an onslaught of 12 3-pointers from Mountain Range to cap a 3-0 night for Aurora teams in the 5A 1st round.

No. 18 Cherokee Trail topped No. 47 Douglas County 80-48 and No. 19 Regis Jesuit downed No. 46 Arvada West 73-51 to advanced to Saturday’s second round, which also features Rangeview’s 2 p.m. visit to Eaglecrest (19-4).

Johnson (recently voted the EMAC’s Player of the Year) was huge for the Raiders with his performance in the third quarter as they broke up a tight game to take a nine-point edge into the final quarter.

Feeling it from beyond the 3-point arc — where he made all five of Rangeview’s triples on the night — and able to get to the rim or free throw line at will, Johnson scored 16 points in the quarter, including his team’s last 10 of the period on a pair of 3-pointers, two free throws and a quick drive to the hoop for a 52-43 edge.

Junior Ryan Ongala (11 points) also had a strong third quarter for the Raiders.

In the fourth quarter, Jackson’s quickness on isolation plays helped him score nine of his 11 points and gave Rangeview enough to hold off the Mustangs, who kept coming and coming by knocking down 3-point shots.

Mountain Range — which got 19 points from Tyler Smith, 17 from Mike Polson and 15 from Brandon Romero — couldn’t get closer than six points in the final three minutes.

Courtney Oakes is Aurora Sentinel Sports Editor. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. FB: Aurora Prep Sentinel


Score by quarters:

Mtn. Range  13  12  18  21 — 64

Rangeview   16    9  27  20 — 72


Mike Polson 7 0-1 17, Brandon Romero 5 0-0 15, Max Castillo 3 3-3 9, Hunter Rohlman 0 0-0 0, Tyler Smith 7 2-4 19, Connor Jones 1 1-2 5, Devin Darnell 0 0-0 0. Totals 23 6-10 64.


Matthew Johnson 11 5-8 33, Donyvan Jackson 4 3-4 11, Jodaun Dotson 2 0-0 4, Christian Speller 1 0-0 2, Ryan Ongala 5 1-3 11, Ayden Clayton 1 3-3 5, Josh Hollins 1 0-0 2, Jeremiah Rogers 2 0-0 4. Totals 27 12-18 72.

3-point field goals — Mountain Range (12): Brandon Romero 5, Mike Polson 3, Tyler Smith 3, Connor Jones. Rangeview (5): Matthew Johnson 5. Total fouls — Mountain Range 14, Rangeview 17. Fouled outMountain Range: Max Castillo. Technical fouls — None.