Regis Jesuit’s Samantha Jones (20) heads to the basket as two Arapahoe defenders close in during the first quarter of the second-seeded Raiders’ 69-57 win over the 10th-seeded Warriors on March 16, 2021, at Regis Jesuit High School. (Photo by Courtney Oakes/Sentinel Colorado)

AURORA | In its history, the Regis Jesuit girls basketball team has made a habit of making it to Final Fours and the Raiders have another in their future in this odd season.

Despite significant roster turnover and significant inexperience, coach Carl Mattei’s Raiders earned their way into the semifinals for the fourth time in the past five seasons alone and the 12th time in 15 seasons since moving from Class 4A to 5A in 2007.

Second-seeded Regis Jesuit qualified for the Final Four with Tuesday night’s 69-57 home victory over 10th-seeded Arapahoe, which led by four points after one quarter and kept the Raiders from truly getting too comfortable for the entire game.

Senior Avery VanSickle knocked down five 3-pointers on her way to a game-high 25 points for Regis Jesuit, which improved to 14-1. Sophomore Savitri Jackson added 19 off the bench and senior Samantha Jones was the third Raiders player in double figures with 10.

Standing in the way of Regis Jesuit reaching the 5A state championship game for the first time since 2018, is budding local rival Grandview, which will visit the Raiders at 5:30 p.m. Thursday with a spot in Sunday night’s final at World Arena in Colorado Springs.

The Raiders had never faced Arapahoe — whose only losses of the season came two apiece to 5A semifinalist Grandview and 4A semifinalist Mullen in Centennial League play — before in the 5A postseason and had to dig in to get past the Warriors, who came out firing.

Jones hit a big 3-pointer for Regis Jesuit, but it still faced a 13-9 deficit after one quarter. The Raiders outscored Arapahoe in each of the final three quarters, however, to win by double digits.

Courtney Oakes is Sentinel Colorado Sports Editor. Reach him at [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. IG: Sentinel Prep Sports

(2) REGIS JESUIT 69, (10) ARAPAHOE 57

Score by quarters:

Arapahoe     13  18  14  12 — 57

Regis Jesuit    9  26  17  18 — 69

ARAPAHOE (57)

Abby Morgan 4 0-0 8, Sam Shaw 2 0-0 6, Katy Edwards 8 2-3 19, Natalia Simonson 2 0-0 6, Sam Crispe 3 9-10 15, Shyla Tummala 1 0-0 3, Allie Taliaferro 0 0-0 0, Emerson Stark 0 0-0 0, Bella Schelhaas 0 0-0 0. Totals 20 11-13 57.

REGIS JESUIT (69)

Madden McHugh 1 4-4 6, Avery VanSickle 9 2-2 25, Hana Belibi 1 0-0 2, Samantha Jones 4 1-1 10, Jordan Jones 1 1-3 3, Savitri Jackson 7 4-7 19, Coryn Watts 1 0-0 2, Abigail Shea  1 0-1 2, London Bachelet 0 0-0 0, Emily Thomas 0 0-0 0, Kate Michalek 0 0-0 0, Joy Ezeh 0 0-0 0. Totals 25 12-17 69.

3-point field goals — Arapahoe (6): Natalia Simonson 2, Sam Shaw 2, Katy Edwards, Shyla Tummala. Regis Jesuit (7): Avery VanSickle 5, Savitri Jackson, Samantha Jones. Total fouls — Arapahoe 15, Regis Jesuit 12. Fouled outArapahoe: Shaw. Regis Jesuit: Jordan Jones. Technical fouls — None.

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