HELENA -- The end of the Frontier Conference regular season season saw the Carroll College women at the top of the standings for the second time in three years. With the top seed comes a first-round bye in the Frontier Conference tournament, a welcome sight for a team that showed signs of wear and tear to wrap up the regular season.
"A lot of us have been sick. Some people are just starting to get over that," said junior point guard Jaidyn Lyman. "I think it's been really nice for us to just focus on basketball now heading into the tournament."
"For us, I think this bye is really, kind of a nice a nice surprise. Just because we have had so many girls go down sick and just been fighting through that illness," said sophomore guard Kamden Hilborn. "Obviously we pulled it out in the end, but it's been kind of nice to just have a whole week to be able to focus on ourselves and what we're going to do to be ready."
With that top seed comes home-court advantage with every game the Carroll College women play in the tournament, another positive for a team that racked up a handful of airline miles and hours on buses before the conference season began.
"Our travel schedule this year has been pretty brutal. We've missed a lot of school and just being on the road is always tough," said Lyman. "It's going to be super nice to just know that we're at home and can stay with our everyday routines while we're here."
The Carroll women will find out who they face when the first round of the women's Frontier Conference tournament concludes on March 4, but until then, Fighting Saints head coach Rachelle Sayers says her team is taking the extra days to prepare with a bit of extra work.
"We're able to get in the gym and and get a lot of extra work in there we haven't been able to do with with these midweek games and all of our travel, so that part's been nice," Sayers said.
The Carroll College women host the tournament's semifinal game on Saturday at 7 p.m. in the P.E. Center.