At this point of the season, St. Mary’s girls’ basketball team is used to being on the winning end of blowouts.

The Pirates stormed through the regular season with a 17-1 record, outscoring opponents by 30 points, on average, each night.

And apparently, the postseason is no different.

Through the first two games of the Class 3A state tournament the No. 1 Pirates claimed back-to-back home wins by 60- and 50-point margins of victory, respectively  including a 77-27 win over No. 17 Salida in the round of 16 Saturday.

“We’ve been playing really well the last couple of games, and sometimes this is just the result you get,” said St. Mary’s coach Mike Burkett. “You know you maybe want something a little closer, but it is what it is.”

But now, after two high-scoring matchups just 18 hours apart, the Pirates have time to rest before their appearance in the state quarterfinals Thursday.

St. Mary’s will face No. 9 Alamosa at the University of Denver on Thursday. Start time will be announced later.

“We’re happy to have a few days to look at some things we need to work on, so we’re just waiting to see what time we play — I just don’t want to get the 8:30 a.m. game, but that’s how it is sometimes,” Burkett said, recalling last year’s third-round game against Cedaredge at 8:45 a.m. “It’s a wonderful experience, you can play your whole career and never go do it, so I tell the girls we need to enjoy it.”

Despite its youth, St. Mary’s is incredibly experienced in the state tournament, winning the 2018 title with just three seniors.

Thanks to that experience Burkett said this year’s trip through the state tournament has been more businesslike, rather than last year’s emotional run to the program’s first state championship.

“Having more experience and being here before is kind of fun to have that experience and be back here again,” junior captain Josephine Howery said. “We just know we have to keep our foot on the pedal because we want to make a statement around the state that we are the No. 1 team and we deserve that seed.”

With just two seniors, and top scorers Howery and Seneca Hackley hoping to clinch their second state title as juniors, the Pirates look to even younger players during times when they have a big lead.

“In a game like this you want your players to play aggressively to set that tone and to stay focused, but you also want them to stay healthy,” Burkett said. “We get those younger girls in there to get everybody moving in the right direction, and you want them to have that time on varsity to represent their school and team and community. We have several freshmen on the team so they can see exactly what has to be done when their time comes.”

Saturday, St. Mary’s used its range to put up a 24-7 lead after the first quarter, and boasted a 29-point gap at the half thanks in part to seven 3-pointers. In addition, the Pirates shot 25 for 29 from the free-throw line, all the while holding the Spartans to no more than eight points in any quarter.

Howery and Hackley both had 23 points, and Brooklyn Valdez scored 11 as the junior class continued to lead the young Pirates.

Howery had 19 points in the first half, while Hackley put up 12 in the third quarter thanks to a 7-for-7 performance at the line.

Freshman Ellie Hartman scored six points in the second half, showing off a feisty style of play in the key similar to Hackley. Hartman is the younger sister of Maggie Hartman, who was named Tri-Peaks Player of the Year as a junior averaging 14 points.

“Ellie is a fantastic player. She is kind of a legacy because of her sister and she is a very special player,” Burkett said. “She wants to do everything right for those older players and it’s kind of a big burden she carries. I have a lot of faith in Ellie, she’s like a little Energizer Bunny.”

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