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Going to State

Rocky Boy holds off Fairfield in Northern B challenge game

 

February 27, 2018

Great Falls Tribune

Rocky Boy's Kordell Small splits the Fairfield defense during Monday night's Northern B challenge game in Great Falls. The Stars won 79-76 to advance to state next week.

The Rocky Boy Stars swept the Fairfield Eagles in a pair of District 1B games this winter, and the Stars also won at last week's 1B tournament. But, in order for the Stars to not miss out on the Class B state tournament for a second straight season, they needed to beat the Eagles for a fourth time.

And while it was never easy, the Stars did exactly that Monday night in Great Falls. Rocky Boy edged the Eagles 79-76 in an exciting Northern B boys challenge game inside the CMR Fieldhouse.

“This was our fourth time and each game has been tougher and tougher,” Rocky Boy head coach Adam Demontiney told the Great Falls Tribune. “They’ve got some really good athletes on that team. We worked for this. We grinded, especially in the offseason. And now that work is paying off.”

The hard work has paid off because Rocky Boy is now headed to Missoula next week and the Class B state tournament. The Stars, many of whom played in Monday night's challenge game, were heart broken this time last year when they missed the state tourney by one win.

And while the Eagles gave them all they could handle, the Stars weren't going to feel that way again.

Rocky Boy came out hot, and outscored Fairfield 22-11 after the first quarter. But Fairfield exploded for 27 points in the next eight minutes, and the Stars went into halftime trailing 38-36. The game continued to be a barn-burner in the second half, with the Eagles holding a 60-59 lead at the start of the fourth quarter.

But behind Ben Iron Eyes and Kendall Windy Boy, Rocky Boy wasn't going to be denied. The Stars trailed by two points with under two minutes to play, but Olin Arkinson connected on a deep 3-pointer, lifting the Stars in front, and from there, they denied the Eagles a chance to retake the lead.

Arkinson's shot was a huge one for Rocky Boy, but so was the 39 points Iron Eyes torched the Eagles for. He connected on four 3-pointers, and was nearly unstoppable all night long. Kordell Small added 17 points before fouling out, while Windy Boy scored 11 points and grabbed a bunch of key rebounds, while Rocky Boy's win offset a huge 27 points by Fairfield's Keeley Blake.

Now, the Stars (19-4) will have the rest of the week off before joining Northern B champ Shelby at the state tournament, which runs March 8-10 at Dahlberg Arena in Missoula.

Rocky Boy 79, Fairfield 76, 2nd

Fairfield 11 27 22 16 - 76

Rocky Boy 22 14 23  20 - 79

Fairfield: Kolbe Pitcher 5, Keeley Bake 27, Ryder Meyer 2, Dawson Allen 19, Ethan Schenk 19, Derek Simmons 4. Totals: 28 13-22.

Rocky Boy: Kordell Small 17, Ben Iron Eyes 39, Franklin Bacon 2, Olin Arkinson 5, Wyatt Caplette 5, Kendall Windy Boy 11. Totals: 29 14-22.

3-pointers: Pitcher, Bake, Allen, Schenk 4, Small, Iron Eyes 4, Atkinson. Fouls: Fairfield 16, Rocky Boy 22. Fouled out: Small, Caplette.

 

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