Kailee Oliverson scored 23 points and RaeAnne Bendon added 21 to left the Twin Bridges girls' basketball team to a 55-44 victory over Lone Peak, and a trip to the Western C Divisional championship game, Friday night at the Maroon Activities Center.
Twin Bridges will face Arlee in the championship game, which is scheduled to start at 8 p.m., Saturday.
Lone Peak will move to the consolation bracket for a showdown with Ennis. That game is scheduled for 10:30 a.m., at the Butte Civic Center.
Falcons coach Josh Keller said he told the team all season Lone Peak would be one of the best teams they faced. He was right.
“They did exactly what they needed to do,” he said. “They came out and they pressured. They battled us and they played good defense and they played hard on offense. It took everything we had to control that game and come out on top.”
The Falcons took a 28-18 lead into the second half but foul trouble allowed the Big Horns to narrow the gap.
Three Twin Bridges starters picked up their fourth fouls of the game during the final minute of the third quarter. Then things got interesting.
Lone Peak took advantage of free throws and some hot shooting. Junior K.P. Hoffman scored a basket to put the Big Horns to within two points, at 39-37. It was the closest the Big Horns had been since the opening quarter.
Oliverson was the offensive spark the Falcons needed in the final four minutes of the game. The junior hit four free throws on her way to an 8-for-10 night at the charity stripe. When she drove in for her final field goal of the game with time running out, she gave Twin Bridges a 10-point cushion.
Bendon solidified the win from the free-throw line in the final minute.
Big Horns coach Nubia Allen said her team came in with a positive attitude and wasn't about to back down to the Falcons.
“We knew we could get it,” she said. “In the regular season we lost to them twice. But we knew we could beat them. We executed it and I think we put up a good fight.”
Oliverson also had nine rebounds in the contest, while Bendon went 11 for 16 on free throw attempts. She also led the team with five assists.
Lone Peak was led by Hoffman's 18 points. Senior Luisa Locker chipped in 12 points and grabbed five rebounds.
“The biggest takeaway is that we need to be ready to go every game,” Keller said. “We can’t take anything for granted. We’re going to have to play our best against everybody to keep winning. Teams are only getting better and it’s going to get tougher. We have to be ready to bring our best game.”
ARLEE 40, SEELEY SWAN 30
Alyssia Vanderburg scored 16 points to lead the Scarlets past the Blackhawks in the other semifinal game.
Seeley Swan was bumped to the consolation bracket and will square off with the Saint Regis Tigers at 10:30 a.m., Saturday at the Maroon Activities Center.
Arlee outscored Seeley Swan in the first half and never looked back.
The Blackhawks were led by Alex Bohlman's 12-point effort.
SAINT REGIS 46, CLARK FORK 22
Madison Hill scored 16 points to keep the Tigers season alive and end Clark Fork's.
The Tigers will face Seeley Swan in the consolation semifinals at 10:30 a.m., Saturday at the Maroon Activities Center. Clark Fork was eliminated from the tournament.
The Tigers limited the Mountain Cats to two points in the first quarter and eight points in the first half. Clark Fork’s best quarter came in the final frame when it scored 13 points.
The Mountain Cats were led by Kenzie Mueller, who scored 11 points.
ENNIS 43, WHITE SULPHUR SPINGS 32
The Mustangs outran the Hornets to stay alive in the postseason.
Ennis will face Lone Peak in the loser-out bracket at 10:30 a.m., Saturday at the Butte Civic Center. The winner of that game will advance to the third-place game. White Sulphur Springs' season ended with the loss.
Danika Philpott scored 12 points for the Mustangs.
The Hornets were led by Mesa Williams, who scored 13.