HIGHLANDS RANCH — The Mountain Vista girls basketball team gave Fairview a harsh close to the 2018-19 season Friday night in a 40-30 win to clinch their own spot in the Class 5A Sweet 16.
As the No. 12 seed, Mountain Vista was awarded a bye in the first round of the tournament, while No. 44 seed Fairview simply was fighting to stay alive.
In a 71-70 overtime victory during Tuesday's first round, it was Fairview who stunned No. 21 seed Fountain-Fort Carson and sent the Trojans home earlier than expected. The upset was a much-needed spark for the underdogs from FHS before heading to Highlands Ranch.
But Fairview's only lead Friday night came midway through the first quarter after an Izzy Munson three-point play put the Knights up 3-1. After sophomores Sara Vafaie and Amiya Robinson earned points down low, the Golden Eagles took the lead and would keep it for the remainder of the game.
The two-point lead was a shimmer of hope for the Knights, but it slipped away after turnovers gave possession back to the Golden Eagles, who turned the mistakes into points.
Sophomore Berit Brookfield contributed six of her eight points in the first half to help stretch the Golden Eagle lead to 10 going into halftime.
Only three Knights found points in the first half, including Munson, who finished the night with a game-high 15 points.
In the opening minutes of the third quarter, the Knights cut the Golden Eagle lead to eight points but a Mackenzie Gamble three-pointer stretched the lead back to double digits. Fairview's Makena Englund responded with a three of her own to cut the deficit to eight again, where it would remain going into the final quarter of play.
Back-and-forth free throws defined the fourth quarter. The Knights would trail by as few as six points with two minutes remaining, but a steal by Vafaie broke the monotony at the foul line and helped the Golden Eagles regain a comfortable 10-point lead in the final minute of play.
Junior Amy Holland's nine points boosted Mountain Vista late in the contest to help secure the victory.
After Friday night's loss, Fairview ends their season at 7-18, the program's first losing record in over a decade. However, considering their first-round upset and the way they rallied in a regular-season finale to defeat Boulder, the Knights ended the campaign with reason for optimism.
Mountain Vista improved to 17-7 and will take on No. 5 seed Fossil Ridge on Tuesday.
Mountain Vista 40, Fairview 30
At Mountain Vista HS
Richmond 0 2-2 2, Englund 1 0-0 3, Munson 2 11-17 15, Gurmendi 0 0-0 0, Page 1 0-1 2, Callicoatt 0 0-0 0, Lampert 3 2-3 8, Motsinger 0 0-0 0. Totals: 7 15-23 30.
MOUNTAIN VISTA (17-7)
Vafaie 1 7-13 8, Gamble 2 2-4 7, Brookfield 3 2-4 8, Holland 2 5-7 9, Hafner 0 2-2 2, Cash 0 0-2 0, Duffy 1 0-0 3, Klabunde 0 0-0 0, Robinson 1 1-1 3, Wille 0 0-0 0. Totals 10 18-33 40.
Score by quarters:Fairview 3 9 11 7 — 30
3-Point field goals — Mountain Vista (2): Gamble, Duffy; Fairview (1): Englund; Total fouls — Mountain Vista 20, Fairview 25. Fouled out — Richmond, Page.