BROOMFIELD — There are a lot of familiar faces on the Broomfield girls basketball roster that were a part of something very special last year.
But while the saying holds true that the past is in the past, that doesn't translate to the opposition that would give nothing more than to knock the Eagles off their Class 5A perch.
The first team on Broomfield's title defense journey was Bear Creek on Friday night in the second round of the Class 5A tournament. And for a quarter, the upstart Bears, seeded No. 9 in the Rhonda Blanford-Green Region, gave the top-seeded Eagles all they could handle.
But a stingy defense that allowed just four points over a 14 minutes stretch between the second and third quarters, allowed Derek Seifreid's team to slowly pull away and eventually move on with a 61-39 victory.
"A lot of people think that I have a real seasoned and veteran club, which I do, but they've also got to understand that we have had a lot of different factors hit us throughout the season," said Seifreid, who was coaching in his first playoff game as well. "A lot of it was just nerves and that was my fault. I'll own that as far getting them ready and relaxed."
With the Eagle gym packed full for both the game and the post-game Gary Davies retirement ceremony, the electricity was palpable and seemed to fluster the Eagles. The Bear took advantage, hitting four 3-pointer en route to a 14-12 lead after eight minutes.
The good times didn't last much longer for the Bears (11-14).
The Broomfield pressure defense started to create turnovers and easy looks on the offensive end. The Eagles' Brenna tandem of Chase and Fankell spearheaded a 16-2 second quarter run that made things a lot more difficult for the Bears.
"Our defense gives us energy on offense and our defense is what we rely on to win games," said Chase, who finished with a game-high 17 points. "Defense wins championships, offense wins games."
Said Seifreid: "Brenna (Chase) is in a new role as a leader and I thought tonight it showed, especially in that second and third quarter. When we needed her to step up and lead, she led."
Bear Creek had flashes of their first quarter-selves off and on and cut the lead to 41-30 early in the fourth quarter. But another big run, this one 15-3, shut the door on the Bears' season.
"One of the great coaches I learned under always told me 'Enjoy the W's,'" said Seifreid, whose team will host No. 4 Fruita Monument (20-4) on Tuesday night at 6:30 p.m. "I'm going to enjoy the W right now, but there is a lot on my mind about thinking of ways to get better."
In addition to Chase's 17, the Eagles got 16 from sophomore Delaynie Byrne and 11 from Fankell. Maddie Kern chipped in with eight points.
Bear Creek was led by Bo Shaffer's 13 points.
Broomfield 61, Bear Creek 39
BEAR CREEK (11-14)
Romola Dominquez 2 2-2 7, Jada Marquez 1 0-0 2, Bo Shaffer 4 2-2 13, Morgan Browne 0 0-0 0, Kayli Barbeau 0 0-0 0, Asyriah Varela 0 0-1 0, Marissa Morton 2 3-4 9, Alexis Lopez 2 0-0 6, Rachel Hiatt 0 2-4 2, Haley Abeyta 0 0-0 0, Zel Martinez 0 0-0 0. Totals 11 9-13 39.
Abby Croell 1 0-4 3, Steph Peterson 1 0-0 3, Juliet Steinhauer 0 0-0 0, Maddie Kern 3 0-0 8, Brenna Chase 8 0-0 17, Jenna Casasanta 1 1-2 4, Brenna Fankell 5 1-2 11, Delaynie Byrne 5 3-4 16, Madison Wagner 0 0-0 0, Taylor Gilmore 0 0-0 0. Totals 24 5-12 61.
Score by quarters:Bear Creek 14 2 11 12 — 39
Broomfield 12 16 11 24 — 61
3-point field goals — Bear Creek (8): Shaffer 3, Morton 2, Lopez 2, Dominquez; Broomfield (8): Byrne 3, Kern 2, Peterson, Chase, Casasanta. Total fouls — Bear Creek 13; Broomfield 11.