February 24, 2024


Step Into The Technology

Photos: State champion Aspen boys basketball returns home to adoring fans

6 min read
After finishing 27-0 and winning the Class 3A state championship on Saturday in Denver, Aspen High School boys basketball coach Cory Parker steps off the bus after the team returned to Aspen on Sunday, March 13, 2022, to a police escort and a hoard of fans awaiting them at Paepcke Park to celebrate the program’s first state title.
Austin Colbert/The Aspen Times

A night earlier in Denver, Aspen High School boys basketball coach Cory Parker admitted that Aspen was, in fact, a ski town.

But he also set forth a personal task of turning it into a basketball town, and that’s exactly what Aspen looked like when the AHS players hopped off the bus Sunday at Paepcke Park to dozens of fans, red pompons and a celebration worthy of a champion.

With a police escort into town, the Skiers were able to relish in their Class 3A state title, won Saturday over Centauri inside the University of Denver’s Hamilton Gymnasium. The win capped off a perfect 27-0 season and it was the program’s first state championship.

Parker, a 2008 AHS graduate who came home to coach and teach, was the first off the bus Sunday and soon after gave a short speech that resembled much of what he said Saturday after completing their fairy tale season.

“That’s going to be tough, for sure. Graduation is going to be tough,” Parker said after Saturday’s game of the team’s 10-man senior class. “But what we’ve done here and what we’ve created goes way beyond just this team. This is a culture. This a culture that we’ve built and these boys have been the start of it. So yes, this personnel will go, but the legacy will continue to remain and the culture will continue to remain.”

The 10 seniors riding off into the sunset include brothers Shae and Braden Korpela, Ben Godomsky, Lucas Lee, Porter Lee, Sergio Ruiz, Ansel Whitley, Quinn McKie, Simon Holloway and Hudson Nunes. It was a group that grew under former head coach Alex Schrempf before Parker took over this season after having been Schrempf’s assistant the past five seasons.

“I’m feeling good. I’m feeling extremely proud,” Parker had said Saturday. “Not only on the court with what they did and their resiliency and toughness and how they improved on the court, but the family aspect, the brotherhood aspect.”

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