CollegeFrontier Conference


Montana Tech tops Carroll to three-peat as Frontier Conference tournament champion

Montana Tech
Posted at 8:06 PM, Mar 02, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-02 22:06:02-05

GREAT FALLS — For the first time since Kelvin Sampson was manning Montana Tech's men's basketball sideline, the Orediggers have won three consecutive Frontier Conference tournament championships.

Tech star Asa Williams had a big first half in helping the Orediggers to a 93-77 win over Carroll in the championship game Saturday at Four Seasons Arena.

Williams scored 19 points — including 15 on five 3-pointers — in the first 20 minutes, as Tech got up by as many as 19 points. The Orediggers went into halftime with a 47-30 lead and Carroll didn't get closer than nine the rest of the way. Tech never trailed in the game.

Williams finished with 31 points on 11-of-16 shooting, including an 8-for-12 mark from 3-point range. He rounded out his stat line with three rebounds, five assists, two blocks and two steals. Caleb Bellach and Hayden Diekhans each added 15 points for Tech, which made 36 of 66 field goals and 12 of 22 3-point attempts in the game. The Orediggers tallied 26 assists on their 36 made shots.

James Lang, Carroll's hero who hit the game-winning 3-pointer in the semifinals, had 21 points Saturday. He made 10 of 11 from the free throw line, as Carroll made 22 of 25 from the stripe as a team.

Andrew Cook added 14 points and seven rebounds for the Saints, and Isaiah Moore had 12 points.

Tech last won three consecutive Frontier Conference tournament titles in 1983, 1984 and 1985 under Sampson. Sampson is currently the head coach at the University of Houston, the No. 1-ranked team in NCAA Division I basketball.

With Saturday's win, Tech is the Frontier Conference's automatic qualifier for the NAIA national championships, which begin March 15. The NAIA already announced Tech would host first- and second-round games in Butte.

The complete bracket for the national championships will be released on March 7.