By Kim Staudinger
The Montana State University-Northern Lights and Skylights have a new rivalry forming with the University of Great Falls, a rivalry that had been absent for nearly 20 years when Great Falls dropped its basektball programs.
But when the Argos come to town Saturday night, all the past history will be forgotten history that includes only one win for the men's team in their first season back last season.
Currently the UGF men's team is 0-2 in conference play and 2-17 overall. The Lights are 1-1 in conference play and 12-6 overall for fifth in the Frontier Conference. The Lady Argos' record is not much better at 0-2 in conference play and 3-16 overall. The Skylights, who sit atop the Frontier Conference, are 2-0 in conference play and 15-2 overall.
The Skylights lead in nearly every offensive category in the conference and also lead in team rebounds, while the Lady Argos sit near the bottom. Individually, the Skylights have at least one player near the top in individual standings, while the Argos only have three total.
As a team, the Skylights are third in team scoring, first in team rebounds, second in team field-goal percentage, second in team free-throw percentage and fifth in team three-point percentage. The Argos are sixth in scoring, seventh in rebounds, eighth in field-goal percentage, eixth in free-throw percentage and sixth in three-point percentage.
Northern's Paula Owens is third in scoring, fourth in rebounding, third in field-goal percentage, ninth in three-point percentage and sixth in steals. Jenny Balgua leads the conference in three-point percentage. Miranda Weiser and Szudia Bragg sit one and two, respectively in free-throw percentage. Weiser is also 10th in assists. Tamecia Watkins is second in steals and 10th in blocked shots. Angee Thomas is fifth in blocks.
The only Lady Argos listed in the top 10 in the conference were Sam Garrett, who is fifth in field-goal percentage, Carlene Jensen, who is fourth in free-throw percentage, and Deena Wisniewski, who is 10th in steals.
For the men, Northern is fourth in team scoring, fifth in rebounds, second in team field-goal percentage, first in team free-throw percentage and second in team three-point percentage. The Argo men are fifth in scoring, sixth in rebounds, team field-goal percentage and team three-point percentage, and eighth in team free-throw percentage.
Individually for the Lights, E.J. Little is ninth in scoring, fourth in rebounding and fifth in field-goal percentage. Josh Hays is first in the conference in field-goal percentage, followed by Jermaine Walton in seventh. Walton is also eighth in free-throw percentage and steals and second in assists. Jeff Graham is third in three-point shooting percentage, followed by K.C. Moultrie in fifth. Moultrie also sits seventh in free-throw percentage. Faheem Nelson is the only other Light listed with a second-place standing in blocks.
Great Falls is led by Bob Samuelson who is fifth in rebounding and fourth in blocks. Dustin Lym is ninth in rebounding and Danny Ball is second in free-throw percentage. Will Butler rounds out the Argo list in sixth in steals.
The women are slated to start the action Saturday night at 6 with the men's game to follow at 8 at the Northern gym.