The Stevensville Yellowjackets had a tough week. They had two tough games – one a valley rival, Corvallis; and the other, one of the toughest teams in the conference, Dillon. Add to that, one of the starters, Jesse Sims, transferred to Corvallis. The loss of Sims has created a new dynamic for the team, one they are still working on according to first year coach Joey Wark.
The ‘Jackets struggled in their opening play against Corvallis, especially in rebounding. Corvallis lists only two players under six feet on its roster and is very physical. Coach Joe Jessop said the goal for his team is to close the gap on the best teams in the conference and the Blue Devils were certainly on task against Stevensville. The lead changed several times throughout the game with Stevensville down as many as nine points before taking the lead for good in the fourth quarter. The Yellowjackets went on to win, 59-53.
Junior Jayce Gilder of Corvallis was a major force for the Blue Devils. The 6’4” post player scored 17 points and rebounded well. His play against Zach Gavlak was tough and limited the all-stater to only10 points. Although Corvallis finished with 17 fouls and Stevensville had 19 fouls, Corvallis gave up eight fouls in the final two minutes of the game.
Corvallis had a one-point lead at the end of three quarters but then Stevensville went to work. Jared Schultz, who finished with 20 points, hit a long three pointer and Noah Baney followed that with one of his own. Chance Coleman stepped up with a bucket and Chris Bergman made a trey and then on the next play stole the ball and sank another bucket.
“We have some wrinkles we have to work out,” said Wark. “Our guards are going to have to work harder to take the pressure off of Zach (Gavlak). We have a big ‘X’ on our backs but we are going to be ready for that.”
Coach Jessop said his team has a lot of heart. He was especially pleased with the team’s free throw shooting and said they have been working on that. “We gave ourselves a chance. Stevensville’s a tough team though.”
Stevensville 59, Corvallis 53
Stevensville – Jared Schultz 20, Zach Gavlak 10, Jace Omlid 10, Chris Bergman 10, Chance Coleman 6, Noah Baney 3.
Corvallis – Jayce Gilder 17, Brigham Parrish 15, Alma Powell 9, Andrew Leopold 8, Porter Jessop 3, Chaney Waldo 1.
Saturday afternoon the Dillon Beavers came to Stevensville for a much anticipated Southwest A match up. Stevensville opened up strongly and scored 25 points in the first quarter alone. However Dillon came back in the fourth quarter to score 29 points, 22 of them in the last five minutes of the game, and went on to win, 72-62.
Stevensville had a 10-point lead with 4:56 remaining in the game. Foul trouble put Jace Omlid, Chris Bergman and Gavlak out and the team, which is already stretched thin, had trouble going up against the Beavers. Schultz finished with 27 points for the ‘Jackets who fell to 1-2 in conference play and 4-3 overall.
Dillon 72, Stevensville 62
Dillon–Kluesner 8, Williams 2, Ferris 6, Love 2, Simkins 3, Ju. Ferris 2, Scott 35, Huber 2, Ja. Ferris 3, Richardson 9.
Stevensville –Lords 6, Bergman 9, Omlid 5, Coleman 13, Gavlak 2, Schultz 27.
Corvallis topped Anaconda, 67-60, on Friday. Although the Copperheads built up a 12-point lead at the end of the first quarter, the Blue Devils chipped away at the lead. The two teams were tied at the end of three quarters but the Devils held Anaconda to only nine points in the final stanza while scoring 16 of their own. Gilder had 28 points, Alma Powell finished with 13 and Brigham Parish had 10.
Corvallis 67, Anaconda 60
Anaconda–Fode 17, Stetzner 17, C. Stanberry 13, D. Stanberry 8, Gallagher 3, Conrady 2.
Corvallis – Gilder 28, Powell 13, Parish 10, Jessop 6, Leopold 5, Ray 3, Waldo 2.
Hamilton lost to Hellgate on Friday, 72-38. Teague Blome had nine points to lead the Broncs. The Broncs lost to Anaconda, 61-54, on Saturday. Josh Heath had 19 points for Hamilton.
Florence took on Deer Lodge in conference play on Thursday. The Falcons took the lead early and went on to win, 48-36. Levi Clagett finished with 14 points and Travern Smith added 12 more in the win.
Florence traveled to Whitefish on Saturday for a non-conference game. The Bulldogs defeated the Falcons, 49-34. Clagett finished with 12 points and Ryan Mangun had nine.
Victor picked up a couple of conference wins over the weekend. The Pirates defeated Valley Christian, 42-38, in a close game on Thursday. Nate Bishop and Brady Tuttle each had 10 points for Victor. On Friday, the pair again led the Pirate scoring against Alberton. Bishop finished with 19 points and Tuttle with 18, in a 63-16 blowout.
Darby split their games over the weekend. They lost to Drummond, 73-54. Although they played the Trojans closely in the first quarter, the Tigers went cold in the second and third quarters. Zach McCrossin led the Tigers with 21 points in the game. On Saturday, Darby trounced St. Regis, 64-18. Joe Caicedo finished with 21 points and Dawson Jakober had 10.