Rivals battle on court, mat in regular season wrap up
POLSON — Ronan and Polson high schools wrapped up their wrestling and basketball regular seasons with one last matchup this past weekend with Ronan grabbing victories in two of the three contests.
After falling to the Polson Pirates on their home mat nearly a month ago, the Ronan Chiefs wrestling team, on Friday, avenged their previous loss with a 39-27 match victory over the hosting Polson Pirates.
Ronan picked up a decision win from Beaudean Decker (132) and five wins by pin from Fortino Silva (120), Landon Bishop (138), Caleb Cheff (145), Trapper McAllister (152) and Max Morency (285).
The Polson Pirates posted a win by pin from Ryley Knutson (103) and a 5-3 decision win from Maysn Cowell (126).
Playing at the Joe McDonald Health and Fitness Center on the Salish Kootenai College campus in Pablo on Saturday afternoon, the Ronan Maidens put the brakes on a two-game losing streak with a 50-34 win over the hosting Polson Lady Pirates.
Jaylea Lunceford paced the Maidens with a game-high 15 points. The Lady Pirates were led by Jazlyn Dalbey with 10 points.
The Maidens finish the season two games over .500 with an overall season record of 9-7. The young Lady Pirates finished 0-15 in a rebuilding season with new head coach Ryan Antos.
Saturday’s matchup between the Ronan Chiefs and visiting Class A number-two state-ranked Polson Pirates was an up-and-down-the-court, fast-paced affair that stayed close for the first half; however, the Pirates took control of the game in the second quarter for the 51-43 victory.
The first quarter saw both teams trading points and game leads before Ronan’s Leonard Burke sank a three-point buzzer-beater to end the first quarter, which put the Chiefs up 14-11 over the Pirates.
Tied 23-23 in the waning seconds of the second quarter, Pirate Colton Graham netted a two-point jumper to break the deadlock, sending both squads into the locker room at the half with Polson up 25-23.
In the second half, the Pirates outscored the Chiefs 14-7, helping Polson secure the 51-43 road victory and extend their consecutive win to seven on the season.
For Ronan, Burke led with a team-high 14 points followed by Elijah Tonasket with 13 points. The Chiefs finish the season with a second-place 9-6 overall record in the Northwestern A conference.
Graham led all scorers with 22 points on the afternoon and Darian Williams scored 13 points as the Pirates wrapped up their season with a 13-1 overall record and a Northwestern A first-place finish.
Maidens 50, Lady Pirates 34
Ronan 20 13 9 8 — 50
Polson 2 15 5 12 — 34
RONAN: Jaylea Lunceford 15; Jaeleigh Gatch 9; Alexis Wirz 7; Areanna Burke 7; Danielle Coffman 4; LaReina Cordova 2; Leina Ulutoa 2; Olivia Heiner 2; Madeline McCrea 2.
POLSON: Jazlyn Dalbey 10; Mossy Kauley 8; Megan Rost 4; Grace Hobbs 4; McKenna Hanson 3; Ali Hupka 2; Jaivin Bad Bear 2; Julia Barnard 1.
Pirates 51, Chiefs 43
Polson 11 14 14 12 – 51
Ronan 14 9 7 13 – 43
POLSON – Colton Graham 22; Darian Williams 13; Jarrett Wilson 8; Xavier Fisher 5; Trevor Lake 2; JC Steele 1.
RONAN – Leonard Burke 14, Elijah Tonasket 13, Marlo Tonasket 7, Girma Detwiler 5, Zarec Couture 2, Ruben Couture 2.