For 32 years, the annual Brenda Patch Tournament has signaled the start of the Roaring Fork High School basketball season.
It’s a way to remember Brenda, who — along with her mother, Loretta — was killed in a car accident during her junior year, 33 years ago on Thanksgiving Day. All proceeds go toward a scholarship fund which will award $1,500 each to two students who share admirable qualities such as Patch is remembered for on and off the court.
The Girls JV teams from Coal Ridge and Glenwood Springs will face off at 3 p.m. on Dec. 5 for the opening game. Roaring Fork boys varsity and girls varsity teams will step onto the court the evening of Dec. 6.
This is an exciting year for both the Roaring Fork Varsity teams because each will be led by newly promoted head coaches. Coach Juan Quintero will head the girls varsity team and Coach Tony Gross will take on the same role for boys varsity. Athletic Director Jade Bath says she is “super excited for both of them and think they will take it to the next level.”
Both of these gentlemen share a similar storyline. Each of them played basketball all four years while attending RFHS. Last season, Quintero was Assistant Coach to his predecessor, Bath. Gross was Assistant Coach to Larry Williams for six years before accepting this promotion in May.
Quintero played in the Brenda Patch Tournaments every year before graduating in 2002. Just like when he was a player he feels “excited and a little nervous” for the tournament. He has always believed that this tournament “sets the tone for the rest of the season.”
Quintero gave a little insight that the girls Varsity will be “running a new style of offense and defense” this year. He has no doubts that “they will do great.”
Gross says, “being a lifelong Carbondale person I knew the Patch family well.” He remembers playing sports with Patch’s brothers. It is apparent that this tournament means a great deal to him.
Gross also looks forward to this tournament because they “usually have a pretty big crowd and a lot of alumni come.” He added that he “would love to see more fans come to the games” during the regular season as well.
If you’re looking to get your Ram pride on this year keep an eye out for schedules, some of which have been posted around town by senior Emily Broadhurst for her Capstone project.
Thursday, Dec. 5
Coal Ridge vs. Glenwood (JV girls): 3 p.m.
Coal Ridge vs. Basalt (JV boys): 4:30 p.m.
Roaring Fork vs. Basalt (JV girls): 6 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 6
Roaring Fork vs. DSST Byers (JV boys): 3 p.m., aux gym
Steamboat vs. Coal Ridge (Varsity girls) 3 p.m.
DSST Byers vs. Coal Ridge (Varsity boys): 4:30 p.m.
Roaring Fork vs. Rifle (Varsity girls): 6 p.m.
Roaring Fork vs. Lutheran (Varsity boys): 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 7
DSST Byers vs. Coal Ridge (JV boys): 11 a.m., aux gym
Basalt vs. Coal Ridge (JV girls): 11 a.m.
Roaring Fork vs. Glenwood (JV girls): 12:30 p.m., aux gym
Roaring Fork vs. Basalt (JV boys): 12:30 p.m.
Rifle vs. Coal Ridge (Varsity girls): 2 p.m.
Lutheran vs. Coal Ridge (Varsity boys): 3:30 p.m.
Roaring Fork vs. Steamboat (Varsity girls): 5 p.m.
Roaring Fork vs. DSST Byers (Varsity boys): 6:30 p.m.