To no one’s surprise, Arlee captured another championship in the 14C District Tournament on Saturday evening at Joe McDonald Gym at SKC in Pabo, roaring past Charlo 80-49 to earn a top seed in the Western C Divisional Tournament this Thursday through Saturday at the MAC (Maroon Activity Center) at Butte Central High School.
After a first-round bye, the Warriors would face the Savage Heat of Hot Springs in the semifinal match. A strong first quarter put the Warriors square in the drivers seat. By the time of intermission, their cushion would be 20. Hot Springs would play a much closer contest the remainder of the way, but the Warriors were able to not only maintain the margin, but add a bit more to it. The Lane Johnson, Greg Whitesell and Isaac Fisher trio accounted for just over four dozen points.
Arlee set the tone of the contest early with their offense at full throttle, perhaps best illustrated by the opening tipoff which was controlled by 6-9 post Isaac Fisher, who flicked the ball in the general direction of Greg Whitesell in full sprint mode, who layed it in for the leadoff deuce. Arlee’s centerpiece hauled in a quintet of rebounds from altered Charlo shot trajectories when he wasn’t outright rejecting them with five blocks, all in the first frame alone. The lead would mushroom to 20-2 before the Vikings recovered some of their composure to end the onslaught of the quarter.
After the Arlee lead expanded into the 20s, the Charlo offensive engine began to show signs of a thaw. Charlo would twice pare down the deficit within single figures: 28-19 during the second quarter and 49-40 about midway through the third period following a Connor Koenig assist of a Nate Delaney triple. But thereafter, the pace of the game orchestrated by the Warriors played to Arlee’s advantage while their shooting touch continued to find its stroke. The district crown would gravitated the way of Arlee once again, but not without a dose of added drama that involved the minor pushing fracas followed by the early departure of a pair of players for leaving their bench.
Warrior Whitesell led all scorers with 28 points, while Isaac Fisher flirted with a triple double when he rejected eight shot attempts with blocks. Reflecting upon the pregame strategy orchestrated by their coach Zanen Pitts, Whitesell commented that the plan was to come out running while conducting their offensive sequences with the confidence of a team that had successfully repelled Viking invasions on two prior occasions during the regular schedule.
Both Arlee and Charlo teams advance to the Western C Divisional in Butte this weekend. Arlee will face 12C 2nd-seed Drummond at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, followed by Charlo facing 12C top seed Twin Bridges at 3:30 p.m.
Arlee 80, Charlo 49
Arlee (19-1), Charlo (17-4)
Arlee 22 15 18 25 – 80
Charlo 6 19 15 9 – 49
ARLEE – Greg Whitesell 10 5-6 28(1r,5a,6s), Isaac Fisher 7 2-2 17(*10r,2a,8b), Billy Fisher 5 3-4 13(3r,1s), Cody Tanner 3 2-3 9(*1r,2a,2s), *Lane Johnson 1 2-2 5(3r,1s,2b), Levi Fullerton 3(1r), *Chase Gardner 3, Dar Bolen 1 0-2 2(2r,3a,2s).
CHARLO – Landers Smith 4 7-10 17(6r,2a,2s,1b), Connor Koenig 3 1-2 8(6r,2a,2s), Roper Edwards 2 1-2 7(4r,1s), Phil Marquez 2 2-2 6(1r), Nate Delaney 1 2-2 5(2r), Garett Vaughn 2 0-0 4(6r), Brock Tomlin 2(3r).
3FGs – A8-16 (Whitesell 3-3, Johnson 1-3, I.Fisher 1-1, Fullerton 1-1, C.Tanner 1-2, Gardner 1-2), C4 (Edwards 2, Delaney, Koenig). (Sa16Feb19gm)
Charlo stats derived from informal JH tally.
MaxPreps postings: I.Fisher 9r, B.Fisher 0r, Johnson 8p, Gardner 0p
Arlee 87, Hot Springs 55
Isaac Fisher crested the half millennial (500) point plateau for varsity career scoring as a Warrior.
Arlee (18-1), Hot Springs (8-12)
Hot Springs 8 18 16 13 – 55
Arlee 26 20 22 19 – 87
HOT SPRINGS – Jack McAllister 16(4r), Tyler Knudsen 12, Tyler Carr 10, Luke Waterbury 4, Brandon Knudsen 4, Kyle Lawson 3(3r,2s), Russel Morton 2, Benedict “Bobo” Waterbury 1 0-1 2, Josh Maier 2(1s), noID (1a).
ARLEE – Lane Johnson 8 2-5 20(3r,3a,5s), Greg Whitesell 6 0-0 15(*2r,6a,2s,1b), Isaac Fisher 7 0-0 14(7r,1s,6b), Cody Tanner 3 1-4 8(*5r,2a,6s), Zach YoungRunningCrane 4 0-1 8(*7r,2a,1s), Chase Gardner 1 4-4 7(1s), Billy Fisher 2 0-0 4(*6r,1s,1b), Deon Red Cloud 1 2-4 4(1s), Dar Bolen 1 1-2 3(*5r,2a,1s), Lane Schall 1 1-2 3(4r,2a,2s), Levi Fullerton 1(4r,1a).
3FGs – HS (McAllister 4, Lawson, B.Knudsen), A7-26(Whitesell 3-7, Johnson 2-8, C.Tanner 1-2, Gardner 1-3). (Fr15Feb19gm12dst)
informal JH tally variants (some sequences missed): Whitesell (2r)
MaxPreps postings: Whitesell 5r, B.Fisher 3r, Bolen 3r2s, Schall 6r1a
differences between alternate player tallies attributed to differences in assessment/credit criteria (initiator & recipient).