LAKEWOOD — D’Evelyn girls basketball had to put in a little overtime Friday night to wrap up its second straight Class 5A/4A Jeffco League title.
The Jaguars — No. 2 in this week’s Class 4A girls basketball Colorado Preps coaches and media poll — escaped Green Mountain High School with a 42-37 overtime victory. The win clinched D’Evelyn (18-2, 10-0 in 5A/4A Jeffco) winning back-to-back conference titles.
“It feels amazing. We couldn’t have done it without Coach (Olson). He has taught us through everything,” D’Evelyn senior Peyton Marvel said. “I think this is going to teach us a lot in the playoffs having this kind of big win.”
D’Evelyn trailed Green Mountain 33-26 early in the fourth quarter. The Rams — No. 7 in the 5A Colorado Preps rankings — looked primed to score the upset and grab the league title. However, Marvel came to the Jaguars’ rescue in the final quarter and overtime.
Marvel drained a huge 3-pointer with 1:37 left in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 35-35. Green Mountain couldn’t buy a basket in the final six minutes and had to go to overtime.
“They are a handful,” D’Evelyn coach Chris Olson said of Green Mountain. “They drive hard to the basket on offense. Defensively, they are so strong and tough to score against. We struggle offensively.”
Green Mountain senior Peyton Bennett scored the first basket in overtime to give the Rams the lead, but D’Evelyn would go on a 7-0 run in the final three minutes of overtime to grab the victory.
Marvel had a huge 3-point play after she stole the ball and drove to the basket.
“That is Peyton in a nutshell. She gets a steal, looks out-of-control, finishes at the rim with contact,” Olson said of the huge 3-point play in overtime. “I’m so proud of her because she has been struggling with free throws. To hit some of those in big moments late was great.”
Green Mountain’s defense didn’t give Marvel any easy looks the whole night. The Jaguars’ leading scorer had to do it at the free-throw line and ended up gong 8-for-11 from the charity stripe.
“It gave us that momentum and I couldn’t have done it without my team,” Marvel said of the 3-point play with 2:28 left in overtime to give the Jaguars the lead for good. “I wanted to finish that for my team because I know how hard we’ve worked all year and in this game.”
Marvel finished with a game-high 17 points. Senior Macy Scheer was bottled up for most of the night offensively, but had three big points in overtime to finish with 10 points.
“That is what you have a senior class for, so you can rely on them and trust them,” Olson said. “Once they (seniors) settled down they made plays. We finally made some plays.”
Junior Ellie McMann finished with 10 points for the Jaguars. McMann’s pair of 3-pointers in the second quarter allowed D’Evelyn to hold a slim 20-19 lead at halftime.
The Jaguars have now won 28 straight league games dating back to the 2021-22 season. D’Evelyn last conference lost was more than two years ago on Jan. 19, 2022 when Green Mountain defeated D’Evelyn on the way to the Rams completing a 3-peat of 4A Jeffco League titles (2020, 2021 and 2022).
“That is what is great about this league,” Olson said of teams taking turns at dominating the conference over the last two decades. “When I started 18 years ago, Valor was winning and going to the state championship. They we (D’Evelyn) did it for a couple of years. Then Evergreen came up and won two state titles. Green Mountain had it turn. That is what I love about our league.”
D’Evelyn still does have one more conference game remaining. The Jaguars have a quick turnaround facing Golden in the Demons’ gym at 10 a.m. Saturday.
There will be two more regular-season games for D’Evelyn before starting the 32-team Class 4A state tournament on Tuesday, Feb. 20. The Jaguars will play in the 5A/4A Jeffco League mini-tournament with games on Monday and Thursday next week.
Green Mountain (15-6, 9-2) might of fallen a bit short of its goal to win the league title, but the Rams still have a path for a strong postseason run. Green Mountain was No. 8 in the 5A girls basketball CHSAA Selection & Seeding Index and will host a first-round playoff game Tuesday, Feb. 20.
With Green Mountain finishing second in the conference, the Rams will host a game in the mini-tournament on Monday and could get another shot at D’Evelyn on Thursday, Feb. 15, if the Rams and Jaguars both win Monday.