Non-conference games make some teams seasons but can also bust other teams’ week. Such was the case for Florence and Corvallis. The two teams played neck and neck all night before Florence edged ahead in the final stanza to take a 59-54 win.
“It’s one of those things where they (Florence) don’t have a lot to lose,” said Corvallis coach Dave Bradshaw. “They are a good team. We’ve got to step up more night in and night out and come with four or five guns firing.”
Corvallis’ Riley Bradshaw had a game high 28 points although Florence’s Sage Hansen did everything he could to slow the redhead down. Mike Finlay had a career high 18 points for Florence but his play of the game didn’t involve the basketball. The American flag was in a stand at the end of the gym and when an errant ball crashed into it, Finlay raced from half court to catch the flag before it fell. The act had the entire gym cheering.
“That’s Mike Finlay,” said Sam Baerlocher, coach of the Falcons. “He really came out of his shell tonight.”
Baerlocher went on to say the victory was a good win for his team. “I feel for Corvallis. They have the Stevensville’s, the Dillons and the Butte Centrals. It’s hard for them to come in here and play a Class B school. For our kids, it’s the Super Bowl.”
Florence 59, Corvallis 54
Corvallis – Stuart Landis 3, Colby Henderson 11, Beau Maus 6, Riley Bradshaw 28, Chase Walker 6.
Florence – Ryne Baerlocher 9, Chantz Hotsinpiller 5, Mike Finlay 18, Aaron Ward 14, Sage Hansen 13.
Florence defeated Mission on Saturday, 54-44, and remains unbeaten in conference play. Ryne Baerlocher had 22 points to pace the Falcons. They have a 6-0 conference record and are 11-2 overall.
Corvallis lost to Dillon in Southwest A action on Saturday, 62-35. Riley Bradshaw had 12 points to lead the Blue Devils.
Stevensville picked up a non-conference win over Polson on Thursday. They defeated the Pirates, 80-44. Austin Kelling and Josh Schultz each had 17 points. Jesse Sims finished with 16 and Jared Schultz and Zach Gavlak each added 10 more points in the game. The Yellowjackets defeated Anaconda, 54-23, on Saturday in Anaconda. Sims and Josh Schultz each had 11 points and Zach Gavlak added 10 more. They improved to 5-1 in conference play and 10-1 overall.
Hamilton had a tough week. They lost to Ronan, 63-53, after spotting the Chiefs 13 points in the first quarter. Brad Palin finished with 13 points. Josh Bartels had 12, Eli Rogers 11 and Reese Isherwood 10 points in the game. The Broncs took on Butte Central on Saturday. The Maroons topped the Broncs, 61-41. Rogers led the Broncs with 11 points.
Victor triumphed over Two Eagle River School by one point, 50-49, in Class C action Friday. With time running out, Kyle Ball ran the length of the court for a short jumper. He was fouled and sank the free throw to give the Pirates the victory. Ball finished with 20 points and Corey Deering added 14 more. Saturday, the Pirates took on Lincoln. They stopped the Lynx, who are in second place in District 13C, 64-49. Ball had a career high 37 points including 3 treys. Matt Kittel had 14 points. Victor improved to 8-3 in conference play and 8-6 overall.
Darby defeated Philipsburg, 68-49, in their only game of the week. The Tigers jumped out to an early lead and never let up as they improved to 5-6 in conference play and 6-8 overall. Jeremy Campbell led the Tigers with 29 points. Devin Thomas finished with 16.