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Stampede On: Pony girls run over Bison, M-Ettes


January 28, 2019

Havre Daily News/Colin Thompson

Havre High's Kyndall Keller splits the Malta defense during Saturday night's game at the HHS gymnasium. The Blue Ponies beat the M-Ettes one night after crushing Class AA Great Falls High on the road.

After taking care of a pair of Central A conference opponents last weekend, the Havre High girls basketball team looked to extend its winning streak against non-conference rivals Great Falls High and Malta over the weekend.

In the end, the opponents may have been different, but the results were the same, as the Blue Ponies pushed their winning streak to 38 games with a 43-28 win over Great Falls High Friday night, followed by a 69-38 win over Malta Saturday inside the HHS gymnasium.

"I thought our kids played really well," HHS head coach Dustin Kraske said following his team's win over Malta. "I think with how hard we play, we just sort of wear teams down over the game and that's what we did. We wore them down."

Against Great Falls High Friday, the Ponies jumped out to an early lead and used their suffocating defense to make it stick. Havre, playing on the road against a Class AA opponent, grabbed a 9-4 edge after the first quarter and led 21-9 in the second, before a 4-0 run to close the first half got the Bison back within striking distance at 21-13.

In the third quarter, Havre blew the game open by outscoring the Bison 14-6. That run included a 3-pointer from Kyndall Keller, who finished with a game-high 14 points, as well as a hoop from Loy Waid who would end up with four. Jessa Chvilicek also added seven in the win and Sadie Filius contributed with five.

"I thought in the first quarter and the third quarter, we played incredibly well," Kraske said. "We did a really, really good job and Great Falls High is a physical team. They tried to bang on us and got up in our face and tried to pressure us and I really liked that. Our kids handled it pretty well. Our guard play was really good."

After winning in Great Falls with relative ease, the Ponies turned their attention to Class B rival Malta, who invaded the Pony Corral Saturday night hoping to avoid a season sweep. But early on, Havre controlled things as Kadia Miller scored seven straight points in the first quarter, which included a trey, giving Havre an 11-3 lead. Yet, a 6-0 run from the M-Ettes closed the gap to 18-13 at the end of the first quarter.

In the second stanza, Malta climbed within three points when Kyleigh Schipman converted on a 3-point play, trimming the Ponies advantage down to 21-18. Yet, the Ponies would respond with a 15-2 run that included a 3-pointer from Chvilicek, a 3-point play from Keller and a bunch of Havre free throws following two technical fouls called on Malta head coach Nate Hammond, who was ejected from the game. Because of that, Keller shot six consecutive free throws, making five and putting the Ponies in front 36-20. At halftime, Havre was in front 40-24.

Keller, who scored the final 14 points in the first half for Havre, came out firing in the second and connected on her first bucket to give her 16 straight. Waid scored twice inside and then Keller hit from deep. When it was all said and done, the junior would score 25 points in just three quarters in what turned out to be a 31-point win for HHS.

"Keller had a pretty good night," Kraske said. "25 points in three quarters. I don't know that we shot the three particularly well tonight. But I thought that we moved the ball really well and I just think we wore them down and made them turn it over a little bit. Malta is a good team and Nate does a good job, but holding them to 38 points, that's a pretty good effort."

In addiiton to 25 points from Keller, Havre also got 14 from Miller, including nine points in the first half. Waid also pitched in with 10 and Chvilicek added six. Schipman was the leading scorer for Malta with 13.

Havre will travel to Rocky Boy Thursday night to take on the Morning Stars at 6 p.m. The Ponies will then host Lewistown next Saturday on what will be senior night.

Havre 43, GFH 28

Havre 9 13 14 7 – 43

Great Falls High 4 9 6 9 – 28

Havre: Kyndall Keller 5 3-6 14, Kylie Walker 1 1-1 3, Kassidy Compton 0 0-2 0, Loy Waid 1 2-5 4, Kadia Miller 2 0-0 4, Jessa Chvilicek 3 0-0 7, Sadie Filius 1 3-5 5, Katie Wirtzberger 2 0-0 4, Lauren Kato 1 0-0 2. Totals: 16 9-19.

Great Falls High: Hadlee Bleskin 1 0-0 2, Annie Toon 0 0-2 0, Gracie Lins 1 0-0 3, Jorgie Hawthorne 3 5-7 12, Morgan Sunchild 0 2-4 2, Ryen Palmer 1 1-3 3, Erin Watt 1 4-4 6. Totals: 7 12-20.

Havre Daily News/Colin Thompson

Sadie Filius brings up the ball during Saturday's game against Malta in Havre.

3-pointers: Keller, Chvilicek, Lins, Hawthorne. Fouls: Havre 20, Great Falls High 19. Fouled out: none.

Havre 69, Malta 38

Malta 13 11 8 6 - 38

Havre 18 22 16 13 - 69

Havre: Sam Oliver 2, Kyndall Keller 25, Kylie Walker 2, Loy Waid 10, Abby Morse 3, Jesse Chvilicek 6, Lauren Kato 2, Sadie Filius 2, Kassidy Compton 3, Kadia Miller 14.

Malta: Erica Smith 6, Kelbee Denham 8, Carly Garfield 7, Raina Mortenson 2, Kyleigh Schipman 13, Kloie Marks 2.


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