LONGMONT — Silver Creek sophomore Trent Dykema missed nearly the entire month of January after breaking a metacarpal in his non-shooting wrist.
The Raptors are glad to have him back in the lineup.
Second on the team in scoring, Trent Dykema (9.9 points per game) returned to the Raptors on Jan. 29 and has averaged 16 points in his last two games. On Thursday night, the 6-foot-4 shooting guard helped drive the Raptors running attack on the way to 73-47 win Greeley Central.
"He missed eight games for us and it was right during crunch time," Raptors head coach Bob Banning said. "Not only is Trent good for 10 points a night but he leads our team in steals. He probably creates as many points in a game as he scores. We've had a lot of guys out here and there with injuries but I've been really pleased with our resolve during those tough times. It's a testament to the resiliency of our kids."
Even while mixing and matching lineups, the Raptors (14-6, 8-3 Northern) have won eight of their last 10 games. They won Thursday's game against the Wildcats (3-18, 1-11 Northern) in the first half, during which they raced out to an early lead and led 45-28 at halftime.
Dykema wasn't the only player to have a good scoring night for the Raptors, who have surpassed 70 points in two straight games. Junior forward Khari Harrison led the Raptors with a game-high 17 points. Senior Anthony Kasper scored 11, and leading scorer Rhythm Ajanku (14.6 ppg) and Reese Barrack each scored seven.
"We're getting into a rhythm," Dykema said. "We've just been coming in trying to play overall good defensive games and get our momentum going into Mountain View on Saturday. We're more of a running team, so we try and run first and then set up and offense. But we also try to control the tempo so if we're going fast like tonight and that's our tempo, then that's good for us."
Thursday's win sets up a showdown with Mountain View (12-8, 8-3 Northern), the Northern's third-place team, on Saturday in Loveland. In the teams' first meeting on Jan. 8, Mountain View beat Silver Creek 64-58 in Longmont, giving the Mountain Lions a critical head-to-head advantage over a Raptors team with a matching conference record. If the Raptors can win that game, they'd move into third place and significantly increase their playoff chances.
"I'm really looking forward to it," Harrison said. "I think we can play with those guys. We were missing a lot of guys earlier in the season and now we're getting guys back and putting the pieces together. I think that should be a really good game."
Silver Creek 73, Greeley Central 47
At Silver Creek H.S.
GREELEY CENTRAL (3-18, 1-11)
Zjhondre Trujillo 1 0-1 2, Kevin Varghese 0 1-2 1, Jordan Cervantes 3 3-5 10, Xavier Bonham 6 2-3 16, Chris Martin 0 0-0 0, Shukuru Rushanika 0 0-0 0, Isaiah Barrera 2 0-0 4, Steven Maldonado 4 0-0 10, Brian Yackey 0 0-2 0, Jonah Vigil 1 0-0 2, Hayden Smith 1 0-0 2. Totals 18 6-13 47.
SILVER CREEK (14-6, 8-3)
Rhythm Ajanku 2 1-2 7, Nick Hartman 2 0-0 4, Reese Barracks 3 1-2 7, Anthony Kasper 5 1-2 11, Trent Dykema 6 1-2 14, Andrew Rapp 2 2-2 6, Sam Schlegel 2 0-2 5, Cade Call 0 0-0 0, Khari Harrison 7 2-4 17, Hunter Becvar 0 0-0 0, Christian Warner 0 0-0 0, Carter Blick 1 0-0 2. Totals 30 8-16 73.
Score by quarters:Greeley Central 12 16 6 13 — 47 Silver Creek 25 20 13 15 — 73
3-point field goals — Greeley Central (5): Bonham 2, Maldonado 2, Cervantes; Silver Creek (5): Ajanku 2, Dykema, Schlegel, Harrison. Total fouls — Greeley Central 14, Silver Creek 17.