The Rocky Boy boys basketball team had an outstanding 16-2 regular season. The Stars’ start to the postseason was pretty spectacular as they rolled to the District 1B championship two weeks ago.
However, things didn’t go Rocky Boy’s way when the Stars arrived at the Northern B Divisional tournament last Thursday in Cut Bank. Rocky Boy opened the tournament with a stunning loss to Glasgow, the No. 4 seed from the 2B Thursday afternoon, and that put the Stars behind in their quest to reach this week’s Class B state tournament in Butte. Ultimately, the Stars were eliminated by Malta Saturday morning, ending their season with a still stellar 19-4 record.
Rocky Boy had a week off, and the break may have affected the Stars’ offense. Against the Scotties on Thursday, Rocky Boy shot just 17 percent in the first half, while the Scotties jumped out to an 11-2 first quarter lead. Glasgow held a 19-12 lead at halftime, and though the Stars finally picked up the pace in the fourth quarter, it was too-little-too-late as the Scotties held on for the 55-48 upset.
In the opening loss, Desmond Parker scored 13 points, but top scorers Junior Day Child and Daren LaFromboise were held to just nine points each. Glasgow’s Bryan Larson scored 19 in the win.
The loss to Glasgow was devastating but the Stars still had a road to the state tournament. They came back and beat 1B rival Conrad in Friday’s loser-out game, 60-46. This time, Rocky Boy avoided a slow start as the Stars raced out to 29-22 first-half lead. The Stars also nailed key 3-pointers in a 21-point fourth quarter, which put Conrad away for good.
Parker scored a game-high 18 points against the Cowboys, while Day Child chipped in with 14.
The victory over Conrad pushed Rocky Boy into Saturday morning’s loser-out game, but one win away from reaching the pivotal consolation game. However, thanks to Choteau’s stunning upset of Malta in Friday night’s semifinal, the Stars would have to face the defending Class B champion Mustangs Saturday morning with both team’s fighting to keep their season alive.
And as expected, Saturday’s game was a high-scoring affair with the Mustangs beating the Stars 85-61. Malta used a huge second quarter run to lead 41-27 at the half. Rocky Boy’s offense was better in the second half, but the Stars could never slow down the high-scoring Mustangs in the final 16 minutes.
In the final game of a solid season, the Stars got 15 points by Day Child and 13 from LaFromboise. Parker added eight and Justin Raining Bird scored seven. Tucker Schye paced the Mustangs with 18 points, while Kendall Denham scored 16 and Zach Handley added 15.
While Rocky Boy’s season came to a close Saturday morning, the Mustangs narrowly escaped the Northern B, as they went on to beat Fairfield 52-50 in the consolation game. Wolf Point took care of Choteau 64-53 in the championship tilt Saturday night. The Wolves, Bulldogs and Mustangs will all play at this week’s Class B state tourney at the Butte Civic Center.
Glasgow 55, Rocky Boy 48
Glasgow 11 8 17 19—55
Rocky Boy 2 10 13 23—48
Glasgow — Bryan Larson 19, Jason Thibault 8, Chase Fossum 6, Jake Page 7, Keil Krumwiede 11, Jake Kolstad 4. Totals 23 6-15
Rocky Boy — Bubby Gopher 1, Junior Day Child 9, Justin Standing Rock 5, Kelsey Standing Rock 7, Desmond Parker 13, Darien LaFromboise 9, Cecil LaFromboise 4. Totals 18 10-18.
Total fouls—Glasgow 16, RB 15. 3-pointers—Larson 3, K. Standing Rock, Parker.
Rocky Boy 60, Conrad 46 (lo)
Conrad 9 13 9 15 -- 46
Rocky Boy 14 15 10 21 -- 60
Conrad — Devin VandenBos 5, Camron Janzen 10, Austin Zomer 11, Shane Larson 10, Tyler Padilla 1, Matt Missik 9. Totals: 14 16-26.
Rocky Boy — Jerod Coffee 5, Junior Day Child 14, Justin Raining Bird 8, Kelsey Standing Rock 2, Desmond Parker 18, Darien Lafromboise 5, Cecil Lafromboise 4, Martin Zarco 4. Totals: 24 10-17.
Total fouls: Conrad 18, Rocky Boy 21. Fouled out: None. Three pointers: Janzen 2, Coffee 1, Parker 1.
Malta 85, Rocky Boy 61 (lo)
Rocky Boy 10 17 17 17—61
Malta 16 25 23 21—85
Rocky Boy — Chris LaMere 1, Jerod Coffee 2, Junior Day Child 15, Justin Raining Bird 7, Kelsey Standing Rock 6, Desmond Parker 8, Jalin Belcourt 3, Darien LaFromboise 14, Cecil LaFromboise 5. Totals 23 10-17.
Malta — Kendall Denham 16, Kaden Bedwell 4, Dalton Brookie 5, Jeremy Coslin 1, Spencer VanWichen 8, Zach Handley 15, Zach Czereda 12, Nathan Veil 2, Tate Carney 4, Tucker Schye 18. Totals 28 23-32.
Total fouls—RB 24, MAL 17. 3-pointers—Day Child 2, Raining Bird, Standing Rock 2, Denham 2, Bedwell, Brokkie, Handley 2.