BILLINGS -- The Fortin Center's new floor held a pair of thrilling Frontier Conference basketball games on Thursday night. The No. 17 Carroll College women held off No. 20 Rocky Mountain College late for a 56-54 win, while the men's game took three overtimes before No. 9 Carroll prevailed, 101-97.
Carroll's women grabbed the lead from Rocky in the third quarter after trailing by three at halftime and made Rocky battle back. The Bears did just that, though. A Kloie Thatcher and-one and a Markaela Francis bucket eventually gave Rocky the lead, but Carroll got a huge 3-pointer from Kamden Hillborn to tie the game.
The Saints led by two with less than 15 seconds to play when Taylor Salonen split the Rocky defense with the shot clock winding down to give Carroll a four-point lead. Rocky tried to extend the game by fouling, but the Saints held on and now hold sole possession of first place in the Frontier Conference.
The Carroll and Rocky men traded blows throughout the game, but the Saints found themselves down three with time running out. Carroll went to Dane Warp, and he buried a triple with 0.2 seconds left to send the game to overtime.
Rocky would then have its turn for a little dramatics. The Bears trailed 81-78 with less than a minute to play when Jonny Hillman banged a 3-pointer to tie the game and eventually lead to a second overtime.
The second overtime provided more big-time shot-making. After Carroll's Shamrock Campbell made a 3 to give the Saints a 91-88 lead, Darius Henderson answered seconds later to tie the game and eventually force a third overtime.
Carroll would finally prevail in the third overtime, outscoring the Bears 10-6 to win 101-97.
Warp had a monster game for the Saints, finishing with 33 points and 10 rebounds, going a perfect 9 for 9 from the foul line. Henderson poured in 33 points for Rocky, as the Bears hit 14 3-point attempts but struggled inside the arc.
Carroll's men (14-3 overall, 5-0 Frontier Conference) host Montana Western on Friday. The Rocky men (6-8, 1-4) play Montana Western Saturday. Carroll's women (12-5, 4-1) will play Montana Western with first place up for grabs, while Rocky's women (11-4, 3-2) get the Bulldogs on Saturday in Dillon.