Ronan girls, Polson boys split rivalry basketball games
PABLO – The Ronan boys and girls basketball teams faced off with cross-county rival Polson for the first of this season’s two meetings on Friday at the Joe McDonald Health and Fitness Center on the Salish Kootenai College campus.
The Ronan Maidens won the opener of the double-header with a 56-36 victory over the Polson Lady Pirates, but the Polson Pirates salvaged a split in the nightcap with a 77-75 double-overtime victory over the Ronan Chiefs.
The Maidens dominated the first half, leading 19-6 after the first quarter and 31-16 at the break. The Lady Pirates managed to cut the point deficit down to eleven at 45-34 in the fourth quarter before the Maidens finished the game on a 10-2 scoring run.
Maidens first year coach Steve Woll noted it was exciting to watch his team having fun and working hard together learning a new system.
Senior Micalann McCrea, who eclipsed 1,000 career points on Wednesday night, led the way with a game-high 14 points and five rebounds for the Maidens. Teammates Louetta Conko-Camel scored 11 points and Tiana Ulutoa scored 10 points and grabbed seven rebounds.
For the Lady Pirates, Kaelyn Smith scored a team-high seven points, while Quinn Motichka and Mahala Buffalo scored six points apiece.
In the nightcap, the Ronan Chiefs jumped out to a 10-4 lead to begin the game. After trailing Ronan by six, the Pirates pulled back within two at the first quarter break, 14-16.
The Chiefs’ offense sparked a 20-8 scoring run in the second quarter for a 36-22 lead at the half.
In the third quarter the Chiefs saw their 14-point half time lead dwindle down to seven as the quarter ended at 46-39.
With 2:35 left in the game, Pirate junior Robin Erickson tied the game at 51 all after sinking the first of two free throws. Hitting the second free throw Erickson gave the Pirates their first lead of the game at 52-51.
It was a see-saw battle during the rest of regulation and ended with Pirate Connor Lanier hitting a 3-pointer with two seconds left in regulation sending the game into overtime in a 59-59 deadlock.
Both defenses held tough and the first overtime ended knotted up at 65 all.
In the second overtime, Polson took the first lead and held it until Ronan tied the score at 75 all. With 2.8 left, Lanier drew a foul. He then sank both free throws and sealed the deal giving the Pirates the 77-75 victory.
“I thought my guys played extremely hard against Polson and competed to the very end,” Chiefs head coach Mitchell Wassam said. “It was a fun atmosphere, with a packed house, a rivalry game, and then to go into double overtime. Obviously, we would have preferred to come out on top, but I’m proud of the effort and heart we played with.”
Lanier had a big game for the Pirates as he led all scorers with 28 points. Teammate Robin Erickson scored 16 points and Shade Main added 15 more.
For the Chiefs, Zeke Misa finished the night with 27 points, 9 assists and 7 rebounds, while Anthony Camel chipped in 22 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists.
Polson 77, Ronan 75
Ronan 16 20 10 13 6 10 — 75
Polson 14 8 17 20 6 12 — 77
Ronan: Zeke Misa 27, Randy Finley 7, Nate Dennis 2, Vincent Bird-Webster 3, Dallas Durheim 9, Jacob Gates 5, Anthony Camel 22.
Polson: Robin Erickson 16, Keyan Dalbey 2, Ryker Wenderoth 2, Bo Kelley 2, Connor Lanier 28, Shade Main 15, Trevor Schultz 1, Weston Danley 6, Micah Askan 5.
Ronan 56, Polson 36
Ronan 19 12 14 11 — 56
Polson 6 10 12 8 — 36
Ronan: Louetta Conko-Camel 11, Micalann McCrea 14, Tiana Ulutoa 10, Madeline McCrea 6, Jaelynn Askan 5, Regan Clairmont 4, Kianna Finley 4, Gabby Wirz 2.
Polson: Kaelyn Smith 7, Quinn Motichka 6, Jaycee Frydenlund 4, Olivia Perez 5, Natasha Gravelle 5, Mahala Buffalo 6, Marina Mayorga 2, Alex Pierre 1.