Havre Daily News - News you can use

Basketball frenzy about to begin

Area high school teams begin their season all across the Treasure State


December 5, 2017

Havre Daily News/Colin Thompson

The Chester-Joplin-Inverness girls and boys basketball teams will host the annual CJI Preseason Tournament Thursday-Saturday in Chester. The tourney is one of many this weekend, which will kick off the 2017-18 high school basketball season.

While high school basketball officially started in Montana this past weekend, this week is when things heat up as teams from across the state get ready to open their seasons.

However, the start of the local basketball season will have one key difference for fans of nearby schools and that's because the Native American Classic is being held in the west, at Salish Kootenai College, not Montana State University-Northern.

So instead of Rocky Boy, Box Elder and Harlem playing in Havre this week, all three schools will be on the road for this year's version, which is being hosted by Arlee.

Another big change is that Rocky Boy and Box Elder won't play their traditional season-opening game. The Bears will open with Mission Thursday night, while the Stars will wait until Friday to play, when they will meet defending Class C state champion Arlee.

"The kids and the fans are definitely going to be disappointed," Rocky Boy head coach Adam Demontiney said. "It's a fun rivalry and it's an exciting way to open the season. But since we aren't hosting it, we didn't get to determine the schedule. So it's just the way it worked out. But next year, when the Native American Classic is back in Havre, we will play Box Elder again."

The Bears play Mission Thursday at 6:30 p.m., before taking on Heart Butte Saturday morning to close out the weekend. That will be a rematch of a Northern C Divisional matchup last season. The game against Mission will also be the first for new head coach LaVon Myers, who has taken over for legendary coach Jeremy MacDonald, who led the Bears to two state titles, two Northern C titles and five straight District 9C championships, before stepping down at the end of last season.

"I am just trying to follow in the footsteps that coach MacDonald has left for this program," Myers said. "I'm thankful to still have him around as I make the transition from an assistant to the head coach."

While Myers will lead a young Bears team into the NAC, Rocky Boy returns Kendall Windy Boy, Kordell Small and Ben Iron Eyes from last seasons District 1B champions. The Stars hope to contend in Class B this season and with Arlee and Phillip Malatare on tap for the first game, the Stars will find out about themselves right away. That game tips off at 7:30 Friday night. Rocky Boy will also play the Browning JV team Saturday at 4:30 p.m.

Harlem will also be in action and will be led by a first-year head coach in Cole McCabe, a former state champion and All-State guard for Hays-Lodge Pole. The Wildcats will open their season against Heart Butte Friday, before playing in the NAC final Saturday night against Arlee. Tip-off will be at 7:30.

While Harlem, Box Elder and Rocky Boy will be at the Native American Classic, Fort Benton will be hosting its own tournament Friday and Saturday that also includes Simms, Great Falls Central and Centerville. The Longhorns will play Simms Friday night at 7:15, followed by a game Saturday against Great Falls Central. That contest will tip at 5:30 p.m.

The rest of the District 9C, outside of Turner, which opened at the Glasgow Tournament last weekend, will be at the CJI Tournament hosted by Chester-Joplin-Inverness. The action will get underway Thursday with Big Sandy against Dutton-Brady at 1:45 p.m., followed by Power and North Star Thursday night. That game will also be used as a chance to honor former high school basketball coach Griff Bye, who passed away last May. Both coaches, including WayLynn Burgess of North Star, will wear Hawaiian shirts and white Adidas shoes to honor Bye.

"We wanted to put something together and we thought with the two schools he coached at last playing each other, we could do something to honor him," Burgess said. "So we decided to wear the Hawaiian shirts and the white shoes as a way to kind of honor him."

Chinook will make its season debut Friday. The Sugarbeeters are the preseason favorite in the 9C and they will take on Dutton-Brady Friday. Chinook which boasts Cord Schneider and Isaac Bell, will take on Sunburst and All-State standout Treyton Pickering Saturday at 2:45 p.m.

The Knights, led by Burgess will also take on Big Sandy Friday, while CJI, the host team, will play Sunburst in the nightcap at 8 p.m. CJI will then take on Power in the tournament finale Saturday night at 6:15.

Hays-Lodge Pole will also be in action this weekend, starting Thursday at the All American Indian Shootout in Billings at the Metra. The three-day tournament starts Thursday. The Thunderbirds will open against Lodge Grass Thursday at 2:20 p.m.

CJI Preseason Tournament


1:45 Big Sandy vs Dutton-Brady

5:15 Power vs North Star


1:00 Chinook vs Dutton-Brady

4:30 North Star vs Big Sandy

8:00 CJI vs Sunburst


2:45 Chinook vs Sunburst

6:15 Power vs CJI

Fort Benton Tournament


2:00 Centerville vs Great Falls Central

7:15 Fort Benton vs Simms


3:45 Simms vs Centerville

7:15 Fort Benton vs Great Falls Central


Reader Comments


Powered by ROAR Online Publication Software from Lions Light Corporation
© Copyright 2019

Rendered 04/10/2019 10:45