MISSED ONE — Cowboy Shane Larson had this shot rejected by Wolf Point defender Pat Laney, #15, in first period action at the divisional tournament. Of course, it’s kind of hard for the ball to drop through the hoop when the defender closes the net with his hand. I may be wrong, but I thought this was goal tending. I-O Photo by Buck Traxler
The ride was good. The season for the home boys provided fans with excitement, a chance to yell and in the end, cross their fingers.
But in the end, they will not be joining the Cowgirls in Butte for the big dance.
In a close contest at the Northern B divisional in Cut Bank Conrad, the number three seed out of the IB faced off with the Wolf Point Wolves, the number two seed out of the 2B.
The Wolves got on the board first and on Conrad’s first possession, senior Austin Zomer hit a short jumper to tie the contest, early on, at 2-2. But it took 16 passes through, around and over the lanes before he took his shot.
Zomer would drop in two more buckets that gave the Cowboys a 5-4 lead and tied the game at 7-7.
Devin VandenBos got Conrad a quick 9-7 lead, but the Wolves tied the game back up as the period came to a close. There were three ties and three lead changes in the first quarter.
In the second period, Shane Larson tied up the game at 11, hitting both shots from the freebie line and Camron Janzen swished a three point bomb to stop a short scoring run by the Wolves. They took an 18-14 lead to the locker room at the intermission.
Conrad trailed by three going to the home stretch, 23-26. VandenBos got the finger roll on a layup with the ball taking a tour of the rim before gravity took over and pulled it down through the nets. Janzen nailed another three pointer late in the game to get the team close, 30-32.
However, as the clock was ticking down the Wolves generated back-to-back turnovers and converted them to scores to ice the win, 30-36.
Turnovers hurt Conrad. The Wolves scored seven points off the T/Os, and they also had five points off the bench to zero for the Cowboys in both statistics.
Zomer marked down 12 points in the scorebook to lead Conrad. He had a nice game with four rebounds, two assists and a blocked shot.
Larson tossed up seven points, pulled in four boards and had a blocked shot.
Janzen drilled home a pair of treys for six points, VandenBos added five markers, matched that in rebounds, had one assist and a steal to round out the scoring.
The Cowboy’s hit on 11-32 shots from the field and 4-8 at the line. The Wolves scored on 13-37 shots from the floor and were 6-14 at the line.
In other action, Glasgow opened the tournament with a huge upset of Rocky Boy, 55-48, Malta downed Fairfield 64-41, and Choteau stopped Plentywood, 71-61.
In loser out action on Friday, the Cowboys had to face off with Rocky Boy North Stars.
Rocky Boy forged a first half lead, 29-22, partially on some questionable non-calls that may have made a difference and one amazing shot.
As the quarter ticked down, North Star Jerod Coffee pulled down a rebound and from a couple of feet inside the free throw stripe he rifled a shot at the Stars bucket, some 70 feet, down court.
At the buzzer sounded, the ball crashed off the glass and went in for an incredible three points. Instead of a three point lead, Rocky Boy carried a seven point led to the locker room.
Over the second half they outscored Conrad 31-24 to stay alive while the Cowboys season on the courts came to an end.
Junior Missik had a terrific game for the Cowboys. He didn’t play at all in the first half. In the second half he came off the bench and went 4-4 from the field and 1-1 at the line, pulled in eight rebounds and had one steal.
Zomer led the team in scoring with 11 points. He had seven rebounds and one steal. Janzen dumped in 10 points, had two steals, one assist and three boards. Larson tallied up 10 markers, pulled down seven boards and had one steal and Tyler Padilla rounded out the scoring with a point from the line.
The Cowboys didn’t help themselves, having 25 turnovers. The North Stars scored 23 points on turnovers while the Cowboys scored 10 and had 14 second chance points to one for Conrad.
The Cowboys hit on 14 shots from the floor and were 16-26 at the line. Rocky Boy connected on 24 shots from the field and was 10-17 at the line.
Wolf Point, Choteau and Malta all advanced to play some more in Butte.
It was a good run. Conrad provided fans with a lot of excitement and reason to cheer. You had a nice season that just ended a little early.