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Frontier's final weekend will be as intense as it gets

 


If you're confused by the Frontier Conference men's basketball standings, you're not alone.

Heading into the final week of the regular season, four teams are tied atop the league standings, and figuring out what could happen is about as easy as solving the budget deficit. But for Westminster College, MSU-Northern, UM-Western and Carroll College, the mantra this weekend is just to win games and let the chips fall where they may.

All four aforementioned teams sit atop the league standings at 8-4 heading into the final two games of the year. Perhaps the biggest weekend, with the most impactful games will take place right here in Havre, as the Lights host No. 22 Westminster on Friday night and Lewis-Clark State on Saturday night. There hasn't been this big of games at the MSU-Northern Fieldhouse in a long, long time, as a Frontier championship, home-court advantage in the league playoffs and a chance at a berth in the NAIA national tournament all comes down to this weekend in Havre.

But it's not just Havre which will impact all of those things. Carroll travel to Montana Tech and Western this weekend, while the Bulldogs home games with the Saints and Rocky Mountain College could also drastically alter how things will shake out when the dust settles Sunday night.

And there are so many possibilities to who can win the conference championship, who will host playoff games, and who will be ranked in next week's NAIA Poll, it's almost impossible to lay them all out. So instead, the Lights, and the three teams they are battling for all of those things, will focus solely on trying to win the last two games and see where they are when it's all over.

And while the top of the league standings is as confusing as it gets right now, one things for certain, this weekend in Havre, and all around the Frontier will certainly be exciting and it doesn't get any more intense than it is right now.

The same is somewhat true on the women's side. But league favorites Westminster and LC State have a leg up on the rest of the conference. However, that means Northern, which is tied for sixth at 4-8, still has a chance to impact things itself, because the Skylights host the Griffins and Warriors this weekend. It will be an emotional time for the Skylights as they say goodbye to senior greats Samm Schermele and Taylor Keller this weekend, but it's also a chance for said seniors to go out with a bang against two of the top teams in the country.

Meanwhile, Montana Tech, Carroll and Rocky Mountain College are all chasing a chance to at least host a game or two in the Frontier playoffs, so games against each other this weekend will be huge.

And while the Frontier Standings on the women's side aren't quite as confusing as the men's standings, there are impactful games all over Montana this weekend.

The scoring races are tight heading into the last weekend of play too. Schermele (18.3) leads LC's Jasmine Stohr by percentage points on the women's side while Western's Brandon Brown (19.77) leads Westminster's Michael Stockton by almost a full point on the men's side.

The Frontier playoffs start next Tuesday for the women and Wednesday for the men.

Frontier Men's Standings

Conf. All

Westminster 8-4 20-6

UM-Western 8-4 20-7

Carroll 8-4 18-7

MSU-Northern 8-4 19-8

Lewis-Clark 5-7 15-10

Great Falls 4-8 11-16

Montana Tech 4-8 6-19

Rocky Mountain 3-9 16-18

Friday

LC State at UGF

Westminster at MSU-Northern

Rocky Mountain at UM-Western

Carroll at Montana Tech

Saturday

LC State at MSU-Northern

Westminster at UGF

Rocky Mountain at Montana Tech

Carroll at UM-Western

Frontier Women's Standings

Conf. All

Westminster 10-2 23-5

Lewis-Clark 9-3 23-4

Montana Tech 7-5 18-9

Carroll 6-6 19-9

Rocky Mountain 5-7 12-15

MSU-Northern 4-8 13-15

UM-Western 4-8 8-16

Great Falls 3-9 10-17

Friday

LC State at UGF

Westminster at MSU-Northern

Rocky Mountain at UM-Western

Carroll at Montana Tech

Saturday

LC State at MSU-Northern

Westminster at UGF

Rocky Mountain at Montana Tech

Carroll at UM-Western

 

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