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Blue Ponies round up the Mustangs in the Corral


January 28, 2019

Havre Daily News/Colin Thompson

Havre High senior Tysen Sangrey, left, lays up a shot during Saturday's game between the Blue Ponies and Malta Mustangs inside the HHS gymnasium.

For just the second time this season, the Havre High boys basketball team hosted back-to-back games in the HHS gymnasium and against non-conference rivals Great Falls High and Malta, the results couldn't have been any different.

Friday night, against the second-ranked team in Class AA, the Blue Ponies were humbled as the Bison raced out to a 33-14 lead and cruised to a 62-30 win inside the HHS gymnasium. The very next night, in the same building, the Ponies clashed with Class B rival Malta and thanks to a dominant fourth quarter (17-4), Havre managed a split thanks to a 58-42 win.

"We told the kids that we are going to get hit in the mouth sometimes," Walynn Burgess said. "But it's really how you respond to it and (Saturday) I thought we did a really good job with how we responded to it."

Not only would the Ponies have to respond to a 32-point loss to Great Falls High Friday night, they would also have to respond to playing the entire fourth quarter against Matla without their leading scorer Kellen Detrick, who was disqualified from the game for getting two separate technical fouls.

The second technical was the end of a dominant stretch by Detrick that saw him convert another three-point play, as well as scoring on a lob pass by Tommy Brown, who threw the alley-oop to Detrick, who then finished the ball off the glass. In less than three quarters of play, the sophomore poured in 18 points and when he exited the game, the Ponies were in the midst of an 11-0 run, which allowed Havre to go into the fourth quarter leading 41-38.

With their leading scorer sidelined, the Ponies went to work defensively and over the final eight minutes of play, Malta would make just one field goal. All told, the Mustangs managed just four points in the fourth. At the same time, Havre caught fire and 3-pointers from Jake Huston and Austin Delarosa extended the Ponies advantage to 53-41. Soon after, Tysen Sangrey converted a fast-break layup, putting Havre in front 58-42 with less than two minutes to go, putting the win on ice.

"After all that happened, we took a timeout and we had to find out what we were made of," Burgess said. "We faced some adversity and I am really happy with the way the boys handled it. We only gave up 14 points in the whole second half and four in the fourth quarter. They really bucked up and turned into what we are talking about and I truly believe that we can be a really good defensive team if we want to."

While Detrick led all scorers in the win with 18 points on 7-of-9 shooting, Huston also pitched in with a clutch 12. Mason Rismon added eight and Brown contributed with seven points to go along with eight assists. The Ponies limited Malta to just 38 percent from the field and also forced the Mustangs into 19 turnovers, compared to just 12 for HHS. Kooper Oxvart led the way for Malta in the loss with 13. Ben Costin added 12 and Kevin Henry managed 11.

"It doesn't matter who scores as long as we are getting points," Burgess said. "And the boys are really starting to believe that. It makes us that much harder to guard, and kids stepped up. Jake Huston made some big stops and Tommy Brown was big. He is one of the most unselfish kids I know. He just wants to win."

Against Great Falls High Friday night, Havre held its own during the first quarter and trailed 20-10 after the opening eight minutes of play. However, a 23-4 run in the second quarter ended any hopes the Ponies had in the matchup between old rivals. HHS managed 14 points in the first half and 16 in the second half of the 62-30 win for the Bison.

Great Falls High got a game-high 20 points from Blake Thelen, who will play football at Montana State. Kyle Torgerson also managed nine. Detrick was the only Havre player to reach double figures and scored 13 points, an effort which included a slam dunk in the fourth quarter. Brown also contributed with eight.

Havre (6-7) will be back in action Tuesday night when the Blue Ponies host Fairfield.

Great Falls 62, Havre 30

Great Falls 20 23 15 4 - 62

Havre 10 4 6 10 - 30

Havre: Jake Huston 4, Thomas Brown 8, Austin DeLaRosa 2, Kellen Detrick 13, Mason Rismon 3.

Havre Daily News/Colin Thompson

Tommy Brown shoots during Saturday's game between the Blue Ponies and Malta Mustangs inside the HHS gymnasium.

Great Falls: Levi Torgerson 3, Kyle Torgerson 9, Blake Thelen 20, Daunte Janikula 2, Riley Callery 6, Cash Abbott 5, Drew Wyman 7, Keegan Bistodeau 8.

Havre 58, Malta 42

Malta 15 13 10 4 - 42

Havre 17 8 16 17 - 58

Havre: Jake Huston 12, Thomas Brown 7, Mason Rismon 8, Clint Owens 4, Austin DeLaRosa 5, Tysen Sangrey 4, Kellen Detrick 18.

Malta: Kevin Henry 11, Ben Costin 12, Kooper Oxvart 13, Kaden Bergas 2, Tanner Smith 4.


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