GOLDEN — Early on it looked like Golden senior Ilja Bubukin might be the only player with a scoring touch Nov. 29. In the opening round of the D’Evelyn/Golden Boys Basketball Preview Classic, …
This item is available in full to subscribers.
If you're a print subscriber, but do not yet have an online account, click here to create one.
Click here to see your options for becoming a subscriber.
If you made a voluntary contribution of $25 or more in Nov. 2018-2019, but do not yet have an online account, click here to create one at no additional charge. VIP Digital Access Includes access to all websites
GOLDEN — Early on it looked like Golden senior Ilja Bubukin might be the only player with a scoring touch Nov. 29.
In the opening round of the D’Evelyn/Golden Boys Basketball Preview Classic, Bubukin poured in eight points in the opening 90 seconds while it was a struggle for the rest of the Demons, along with any Pueblo East players to find the bottom of the net.
“When Ilja gets going he can fill it up quick, real quick,” Golden’s first-year coach Lou Vullo said after the No. 10 ranked Demons in the CHSAANow.com Class 4A boys basketball preseason poll defeated No. 8 Pueblo East by a score of 72-49.
Bubukin finished with a team-high 15 points, but his teammates eventually joined the scoring party. Nine different Demons (1-2 record) scored in the first half as Golden extended its lead to 42-23 at halftime.
“I could tell we were all really nervous, but I felt we all worked off of each other’s energy,” Bubukin said. “Everyone contributed a lot tonight.”
Pueblo East (1-2) was held to just five field goals in the first half. The Eagles were without a handful of football players who were preparing to play in the Class 3A state football game Dec. 1 against Palmer Ridge.
Junior Darnell Kindred led the Eagles with a game-high 23 points. Senior Conor Mattorano pitched in 14 points for Pueblo East in the loss. The Eagles were held to 14 points or less in each quarter.
“Our whole philosophy is to have our defense dictate our offense,” Vullo said.
Offensively, Golden’s bench scored an impressive 31 points. Junior Jack Anderson led the Demons’ reserves with 12 points.
Senior Connor Howe added nine points and sophomore Nathan Wiggins hit a pair of 3-pointer off the bench for Golden.
“After we saw Ilja starting hitting it we started feeling ourselves,” Anderson said.
Golden did suffer losses to Holy Family and Centaurus to finish fourth in the eight-team tournament.
The D’Evelyn/Golden Preview Classic has become one of the premier early season tournaments. This year there were four Class 4A teams — Lewis-Palmer, Holy Family, Pueblo East and Golden — ranked in the top-10 of the CHSAANow.com preseason rankings.
No. 1 Lewis-Palmer defeated No. 4 Holy Family for the tournament title Saturday, Dec. 1.
“I’m a true believer of scheduling the best teams. It just helps you down the road for sure and helps you get better,” Vullo said.
Prior to coming to Golden, Vullo spent nine seasons heading the boys basketball program at The Pinnacle. It was a great atmosphere with Golden’s former coach John Anderson sitting with his new Pinnacle team in attendance to support it former coach.
“It a great culture and tradition they have here at Golden is unreal,” Vullo said. “When I got the job here I was so excited. It was great to see my old guys here. I appreciated John (Anderson) bring them here too.”
John Anderson — Golden’s head boys basketball coach for 18 years — took over for Vullo as heading up The Pinnacle program now. Both Anderson and Vullo are good friends that has made the transition smoother for both program, along with Anderson’s son Jack.
“It was emotional,” Jack Anderson said. “It was tough not having my Dad there (on the bench), but Lou is a great coach. I love him. (Vullo) has kept the tradition here and that is all you can ask for.”
Dennis Pleuss is a communications specialist for Jeffco Public Schools with a focus on athletics and activities. For more Jeffco coverage, go to CHSAANow.com/Jeffco
Other items that may interest you
We have noticed you are using an ad blocking plugin in your browser.
The revenue we receive from our advertisers helps make this site possible. We request you whitelist our site.