With every game played, the Havre High girls basketball team is looking better and better.
And playing two games over the weekend, the Central A Blue Ponies had ample opportunity to improve once again. Friday the Ponies were
at home and defeated the Lewistown Golden Eagles 59-23 in conference play. And Saturday, the Ponies were on the road, defeating the Class B Shelby Coyotes 50-34.
“Our kids did a great job this weekend,” Havre High head coach Dustin Kraske said. “They are playing very similar to how we are practicing, which is neat. I thought we got a total team effort both nights and our kids are really communicating and playing well together. It was good to play as well as we did against Lewistown at home, and it was good to play well against Shelby on the road. I was very pleased with our weekend.”
Friday against the Eagles, the Ponies used their full-court pressure to run away with the contest.
HHS got off to a slow start, but turned on the heat in the final two minutes of the first frame, finishing the last two minutes with an 8-0 run. The hi-tempo style conintued through the remainder of the contest as the Ponies went on to outscore the Eagles 17-8 in the second quarter, 14-4 in the third quarter and 12-5 in the fourth. The Ponies had just two 3-pointers in the game, finding most of their points off of turnovers, in transition and in the paint.
Jaclyn Evans had one of her best games of the season, scoring 11 points in the paint. Lacey Waid also had nine and Sammy Evans added eight. Neya Bischoff also had seven points from her post play and freshman Morgan Mazurkiewicz totaled six-points. Payton Filius and Mary Lyons had five each, while Brandy Lambourne and Kayley Gilman had four each.
Chanal Standing Rock was out with an ankle injury, but the Ponies stepped up and carried the slack.
“It was nice to play like this after the break,” Jaclyn Evans said. “We all knew we needed to step up and everybody did and played well. I think we are a team where nobody is going to have 20-points in a game, we are a team where everybody needs to score eight, nine or 10 points.”
Havre’s defense was key in the Friday win, as it was again in the Saturday win.
“Our kids got after it defensively and that turned our offense into simple stuff,” Kraske said. “Scoring in transition and fast breaks. I was proud of the kids and they should be happy.”
Kraske said the teams’ defense did so well because of their communicating and team play. They were constantly talking and moving and limiting the opposing production.
Facing Shelby, the Ponies took the lead early and held it to the end. They limited the Coyotes to just one quarter of double digit scoring with 10 in the second quarter. Havre on the other hand put up 23 in the second quarter as they ran away with the non conference win.
Waid came off the bench again for the Ponies and this time around put up 13-points.
“She did a good job,” Kraske said. “She came in both nights and played well off the bench, so that was nice to see.”
Filius led the Ponies with 16-points and Jaclyn Evans added eight. Lambourne and Mazurkiewicz also added four-points each.
Overall it was another good weekend for the Ponies. They played well on both sides of the ball and continued to improve, now housing an overall record of 4-3 overall and 3-0 in the conference.
Havre High can complete a stellar start to conference play if the Blue Ponies can win in Browning next weekend. No matter though, the Ponies are looking good as the halfway point in the season approaches and the holiday break didn't stop the momentum the Ponies built with December wins at home.
HHS plays two more games this weekend, when the Blue Ponies face Browning on the road on Friday and host Conrad on Saturday.
Havre 59, Lewistown 23
Lewistown 6 8 4 5 — 23
Havre 16 17 14 12 — 59
Lewistown — McCalle Feller 5, Nicole Karhi 1, Lissa Quinlan 5, Allie Adams 3, Kelsey Phillips 1, Beth Wright 4, Amanda Stenseth 4. Totals 9 4-9.
Havre — Brandy Lambourne 4, Kaylie Gilman 4, Jaclyn Evans 11, Morgan Mazurkiewicz 6, Sammy Evans 8, Lacey Waid 9. Peyton Filius 5, Neya Bischoff 7, Mary Lyons 5. Totals 23 11-17.
Havre 50, Shelby 34
Havre 7 23 6 14 — 50
Shelby 9 10 7 8 — 34
Havre — Brandy Lambourne 4, Jaclyn Evans 8, Morgan Mazurkiewicz 4, Sammy Evans 3, Lacey Waid 13, Peyton Filius 16, Neya Bischoff 2. Totals: 17 11-20.
Shelby — Katie Hayes 3, Megan Burchak 4, Kayla Leary 3,
Kendra Nickol 9, Jessica Mahr 3, Jordan Mahr 12.