LOOKING ABOUT — Cowgirl senior Jenny Silvernale looks for an open teammate to pass off to in action with Malta at the divisional tourney in Choteau. I-O Photo by Buck Traxler
By Buck Traxler, I-O Editor
Conrad has seen better games. Coming in at 10-12 after the district meet, the Cowgirls drew the huge task of facing Malta in the first round of play at the divisional meet in Choteau on Thursday.
The M’ettes came into the tournament sporting a 20-0 record. The Malta ladies jumped out to a 6-0 lead before Taylor Johnson knocked down a bucket with 4:30 left to play in the quarter. That would be the Cowgirls only score, and Johnsons, except for a free throw late in the period and the home girls trailed 11-2 after the first quarter.
In the second period, the Cowgirls ignited a quick spark and scored five unanswered points. Rashelle Johns dropped in a shot from the baseline, and senior Beth Grubb, off a steal, hit the lay-in shot and was fouled. She completed the three point play for a 5-0 Cowgirl run.
However Malta went on a 23-10 run and led 34-12 at the break. Grubb had scored eight of the 12 points the Cowgirls put on the board.
In the first half, the Cowgirls were only 4-18 for 22 percent from the field. They had no assists and 15 turnovers for which Malta scored 20 points. The Cowgirls scored only two points off of six Malta turnovers. The M’ettes put up eight points off the bench while the Cowgirls got nothing from their bench players.
Grubb led the Cowgirls in scoring, knocking down 12 points. She had four rebounds.
Samantha Fagan drilled in a trey shot for three points. Johnson hit for three as well, Johns and Moranda Brenteson each had two points to round out the scoring.
Conrad was 7-38 (18 percent) from the floor and 7-12 at the line. They had two assists and 25 turnovers and 31 rebounds.
Malta scored on 24-57 shots from the field and was 4-10 at the line. They pulled down 39 rebounds, had 18 assists and 17 turnovers and in the end, got 16 points off the bench while Conrad had only two.
In other first round play, Fairfield got by Plentywood 43-32, Cut Bank fell to Glasgow 60-40, and Choteau bombed Wolf Point, 60-42.
The loss put the Cowgirls in loser out play and into a match up with Wolf Point Friday afternoon.
Conrad came back with a vengeance and led by Johnson who had a career game took it to Wolf Point 61-57.
Johnson blistered the scoreboard, knocking down 24 points. She was six of 14 from the field bombing in four treys and went 8-8 at the charity stripe. Fagan also turned in a nice game, hitting the nets for 14 markers.
Beth Grubb went 5-7 at the line and finished the game with seven points. Johns matched that number in the scoring column.
Harris was good for five markers, Silvernale hit the hoops for four points and Taylor Judisch added a pair of freebie shots to round out the scoring.
The Cowgirls hit on 18-48 shots from the floor and were a terrific 18-22 at the line. Wolf Point scored on 19 shots from the field but was just 10-19 at the line.
In other action in Choteau, Plentywood downed Cut Bank 64-43, Malta stopped Choteau 50-29 and Fairfield defeated Glasgow 51-40.
Saturday the Cowgirls and Glasgow Scotties had the first game out of the chute. The loser got to go home and the winner got to play that evening for the third slot to the Big Dance in Belgrade.
Conrad fashioned a 30-28 lead by halftime, once again behind the blistering bucket making from Johnson.
She lit up the backboard with 20 first half points, hitting on six of nine shots from the field, going 3-4 at the line and 5-8 from beyond the arc for 20 points.
Harris, Fagan, Silvernale, Johns, and Brenteson all scored two points each in the first half and Conrad led 30-28 at the intermission.
After the break the Scotties came out and went on an 11-4 run and then held on to close out the contest with a 59-53 win. The game saw eight ties and nine lead changes.
Johnson was held to just five points over the second half, ending the contest with 25 markers.
Fagan, Silvernale and Johns each tallied six points while Harris and Brenteson both scored four.
The Scotties put together a balanced scoring attack with four players in double figures and three others adding 11 points between them
Conrad was 18-55 from the field and 11-17 at the line. They pulled down 35 rebounds with Johns getting eight Grubb five and Fagan four. The Cowgirls had 10 assists 19 turnovers and seven steals. They finished the season with an 11-14 record.
Glasgow hit on 17-45 shots from the field and was 18-23 at the line.
Both teams scored 16 points off of turnovers and both squads got eight points from players off the bench.
In other action, Choteau came on to stop Plentywood 57-40 and then defeated Glasgow 59-51 for third place and got to punch their ticket for a trip to the state meet.
Malta won the tournament, stopping Fairfield (22-2) 47-39 to remain undefeated (24-0) as they head into the state tournament.