HELENA — It was a Carroll College sweep over the Rocky Mountain College Battlin' Bears, in two very different fashions, as the No. 11 ranked Fighting Saints women walloped the No. 22 Battlin' Bears women 65-47, and the Carroll College men staved off a late push from Rocky to win 80-74.
The Fightings Saints women called upon senior Jamie Pickens early and often in the contest as she rattled off a double-double consisting of a game-high 24 points and 10 rebounds in the contest, with fellow senior Sienna Swannack adding 10 more points to the Fighting Saints total.
The Rocky Mountain women struggled to beat the Fighting Saints' defense in the first half and weren't able to find many quality looks, going 3-19 from the field in the first half.
The Fighting Saints women led the way at the halfway point 26-13, but in the second half the Rocky Mountain women were able to find their footing but it was far too late.
Rocky went 12-21 from the floor, and shot 55% from the free-throw line, in the second half totaling 34 points but Carroll was one step ahead. Ky Buell had a team-high 12 points and four assists.
With the victory, the Carroll College Women move to 8-1 in conference play, 17-5 overall, and take a one-game lead in the Frontier Conference standings. The Rocky Mountain College women will fall to 7-2 in conference play, 19-3 overall, and move into second place in the Frontier Conference standings.
In the men's matchup, the Fighting Saints leaped out on an 11-1 run to start, before the Battlin' Bears men found their footing and started to find the hoop.
Beau Santistevan led the charge for Rocky with 13 points and four rebounds in the first half, 24 and 10 respectively overall, while Andrew Cook and Jonny Hillman paced the Carroll College Fighting Saints with 12 and 11 points.
At the half, Carroll led 39-33 but Rocky bolted on an 8-0 run to open the second half to take their first lead of the ball game on a Jesse Owens layup. From there, it was a race to the finish as neither team was truly able to push the game out of reach until the late stages of it when Andrew Cook put home his final two points in a 27-point effort and Rocky was forced to foul Brayden Koch who eventually sank his two free-throws to bring the game to its final tally.
Jonny Hillman, playing in his first game since Jan. 5 against Montana Tech, dusted off the rust with ease ending the night with 22 points.
The Fighting Saints men moved to 5-4 in conference play, 11-9 overall, with the victory and move into sole possession of third place on the Frontier standings, the Battlin' Bears will fall to 2-7 in conference play, 10-11 overall, to remain in last place in the Frontier.