Here's a wrapup of the action at this weekend's Central A Divisional Boys Basketball Tournament in Great Falls. Three teams Browning, Belgrade and Lewistown will go to the state tournament next weekend in Belgrade.
Loser-out action Friday:
The fourth-ranked Lewistown Eagles saw their season on the brink of being over Friday afternoon in loser-out action.
Sensing defeat, the Eagles rallied to score the final eight points of the game with less than one minute remaining, ending the season for the Park High Rangers with a 57-55 win.
The Rangers trailed for most of the game, down seven at the half and six after three quarters. But a strong showing in the fourth nearly sent the Golden Eagles packing.
Lewistown scored just nine points in the third quarter and was outscored 20-16 in the fourth.
LEWISTOWN 21 11 9 16 57
PARK 15 10 10 20 55
Lewistown Derek Taylor 15, Nate Evans 3, Tye Phillips 3, Joe Grensten 6, Bryan Horacek 18, Evan Sweeney 6, Nate Redfern 6.
Park Hans Cote 8, Myers Reece 16, Jason Beffert 3, Chris Lanterman 8, Tucker Nelson 8, Brodie Pierce 12.
Coming into a tournamet as a seventh-ranked team, being elimintated in two games is almost expected.
The Havre Blue Ponies wanted to change that expectation and prove doubters wrong Friday afternoon in loser-out action against Anaconda.
Strong defensive second and third quarters by the Ponies kept them alive in the tournament, sending them into another loser-out game Saturday morning. Havre held the Copperheads to just 16 points combined in the two quarters, giving the Ponies an easy 18-point win.
Juniors Ryan Lusin and Steve Heberly combined for 22 points in the win.
Zach Parks led all scorers with 20 points for Anaconda.
ANACONDA 16 8 8 18 50
HAVRE 15 20 20 13
Anaconda Nick Maes 2, Kris Vauthier 4, Mark Messer 9, Clint Barkell6, Zach Parks 20, Jonathon Ringdahl 2, Joel Clenney 7.
Havre Steve Heberly 10, Kyle Sheppard 1, Mike Frey 6, Trent Normandy 7, Cory Brothers 6, Doug Ireland 7, Kevin Harada 2, Titus Pedraza 8, Tyler Vincent 9, Ryan Lusin 12.
Semifinal action Friday:
The Browning Indians nearly met their match Friday night in semifinal action against fifth-ranked Butte Central.
What at first appeared to be a blowout turned into one of the closest games of the tournament.
A capacity crowd composed mainly of Browning fans saw the Butte Central Maroons fight back in the second half, cutting the deficit to four with less than two minutes of play remaining.
With five Browning players in foul trouble, Butte Central rallied before getting into foul trouble of its own. Senior star Mike Chavez of Browning sat out most of the third quarter and the start of the fourth quarter with foul trouble, taking away a huge rebounding threat for the Indians.
But Butte Central couldn't capitalize on its chances at the end, as Browning pulled out the 82-73 victory to advance to the championship game.
BROWNING 22 19 18 23 82
BUTTE CENTRAL 16 13 19 25 73
Browning Johnny Edwards 4, Alvin YellowOwl 4, Thunder Harris 1, Kellen Hall 20, Leo Bullchild 15, Mike Chavez 30, Dan Edmo 4, John Butterfly 4.
Butte Central Matt Brophy 10, Ryan McCarthy 2, Josh Kling 6, Craig Tippett 34, Christos Andredakis 21.
In other semifinal-round action, second-ranked Belgrade, which narrowly defeated Havre Thursday night, met up with Dillon.
The Panthers took a slim four-point lead into the half before exploding in the third quarter, outscoring the Beavers 20-13 to take the game 52-42 to advance into the championship game against Browning.
In a low-scoring game, the teams combined for 16 points in the second quarter.
Ken Herbst led all scorers with 17 points, with teammate Bill Cooper trailing with 11.
Dillon was led by Kevin Hammond's 15 and Nate Decker's 11 points.
14 9 9 20 52
12 7 10 13 42
Belgrade Travis Wiley 4, Brandon Steadman 9, Ken Herbst 17, Bill Cooper 11, Mark Bolin 5, Blake Hertzog 6.
Dillon Chris Kelly 2, Nate Decker 11, Dustin Sutton 5, Kevin Hammond 15, Matt Allen 9.
Loser-out games Saturday:
Still fighting for survival, the Havre Blue Ponies had to wake up early Saturday morning to face the Butte Central Maroons, who had just missed pulling off a huge upset over the Browning Indians in semifinal action Friday night.
The Ponies took advantage of the tired Maroon team, holding Butte Central to only six points in the second quarter. Led by senior Mike Frey's 14 first-half points, Havre took a 28-21 lead into the locker room. Frey finished with 16 on the game behind 7-of-12 overall shooting from the field.
Havre outrebounded Butte Central 33-26 with 15 offensive rebounds and 18 defensive boards. Frey nearly missed a double-double, leading with nine rebounds.
Another positive note for the Ponies was strong defensive play, holding the Maroons' top scorers to 22 points. Craig Tippett, who had 34 points against Browning, was held to 12, with Christos Andredakis following with 10.
BUTTE CENTRAL 16 6 8 15 44
14 14 10 22 60
Butte Central Matt Brophy 6, Casey Kelly 3, Matt McKeon 3, Josh Kling 6, Jeff Staudinger 2, Craig Tippett 12, Christos Andredakis 10, Kieran O'Neill 2.
Havre Steve Heberly 3, Kyle Sheppard 2, Mike Frey 16, Trent Normandy 3, Cory Brothers 10, Doug Ireland 5, Kevin Harada 2, Titus Pedraza 9, Tyler Vincent 6, Ryan Lusin 4.
Fighting for the final spot to play Saturday night, the Lewistown Eagles and Dillon Beavers met up in loser-out action Saturday morning.
After a strong first quarter, the Eagles surrendered their slim lead and were down 26-23 at the half.
Just when it appeared Lewistown's luck had run out, the Eagles bounced back in the third quarter, tying the game at 44-all.
The Eagles came back in the fourth with a vengeance, taking the game 58-54 to move on to the consolation game against Havre, with the winner advancing to the state tournament.
Derek Taylor and Doug Longfellow combined for 27 points for the Eagles. Nate Decker topped the Dillon scorers with 16 points, followed by Kevin Hammond with 12.
LEWISTOWN 13 10 21 14 58
10 16 18 10 54
Lewistown Derek Taylor 16, Nate Evans 5, Tye Phillips 4, Joe Grensten 6, Bryan Horacek 5, Evan Sweeney 2, Nate Redfern 9, Doug Longfellow 11.
Dillon Chris Kelley 6, Seth Probst 1, Nate Decker 16, Josh Herman 8, Kevin Hammond 12, Matt Allen 5, Kyle Tash 6.
Consolation game Saturday:
After both suffering first-round losses, the Havre Blue Ponies and Lewistown Golden Eagles battled their way through the loser's bracket to play Saturday night for the right to go to the state tournament.
The Ponies defeated Butte Central in the first Saturday morning game, while the Eagles knocked off Dillon.
Despite having three players in double figures, the Ponies shot only 31 percent from the field en route to a 71-63 loss.
The Eagles had five players in double figures, led by Doug Longfellow's 19. Longfellow made 3 of 6 three-point baskets and was 7 of 16 overall from the field. Derek Taylor added 14 points with Bryan Horacek and Evan Sweeney each adding 11. Tye Phillips rounded out the top scorers with 10 points.
Titus Pedraza, who had limited playing time with foul trouble, guided the Ponies with 13 points. Mike Frey and Cory Brothers each added 11.
8 23 16 16 63
16 13 21 21 71
Havre Steve Heberly 7, Mike Frey 11, Cory Brothers 11, Doug Ireland 5, Kevin Harada 1, Titus Pedraza 13, Tyler Vincent 6, Ryan Lusin 9.
Lewistown Derek Taylor 14, Tye Phillips 10, Bryan Horacek 11, Evan Sweeney 11, Nate Redfern 6, Doug Longfellow 19.
Championship game Saturday:
The heavily favored Browning Indians lived up to the expectation of being one of the top teams in the state Saturday night, defeating Belgrade 80-69.
The well-rounded Indians team was led by Mike Chavez's 31 points, with Leo Bullchild (19) and Alvin YellowOwl (17) close behind.
Belgrade standout Ken Herbst and Bill Cooper each tallied 19 points, with Mark Bolin adding 16.
The Panthers sensed an upset early, taking a one-point lead, 29-28, after the first quarter and a two-point lead, 41-39, into the half. But a tough third quarter proved to be the difference for Browning.
Browning outscored Belgrade 21-8 in the third quarter to take the lead for good.
Both teams advance to the state tournament next weekend in Belgrade.
29 12 8 20 69
28 11 21 20 80
Belgrade Travis Wiley 6, Josh Wiley 2, Brandon Steadman 7, Ken Herbst 19, Bill Cooper 19, Mark Bolin 16.
Browning Johnny Edwards 5, Alvin YellowOwl 17, Kellen Hall 8, Leo Bullchild 19, Mike Chavez 31.