BILLINGS – The Rocky Mountain College men’s basketball team put up a fight before falling to No. 14 Carroll, 91-84, in a Frontier Conference game in the Fortin Education center on Friday night.
Rocky (15-10, 6-7 Frontier) led for the early stages of the game as they looked for its second win in three tries over the Frontier leaders. Carroll (22-4, 10-4) used a 22-10 run to help them take a 40-33 lead into halftime.
It was still a seven-point advantage for the Saints with 12:33 remaining when the Battlin’ Bears turned the tide. Rocky scored 12 of the game’s next 16 points over a span of 5:36 to take a 62-61 lead. The lead would go back-and-forth over the next three minutes before Carroll took control with a 9-3 run to build an 83-75 advantage with 53 seconds to play.
Both teams has it rolling at the offensive end and the game ended with each team shooting above 60 percent from the field. Carroll connected on 67.3 percent while Rocky hit on an even 60 percent. Rocky’s percentage was its second-bets effort of the season and highest in conference play.
The Battlin’ Bears scored 36 points in the paint and finished 9 of 20 from beyond the arc. They tallied 18 assists and added eight points from six offensive rebounds. Rocky scored 18 points from 12 Carroll turnovers while allowing 26 points from their 15 turnovers.
Craig Wilmore tied his career-high with 19 points on a 7 of 10 shooting night. He was good on three of his six attempts from beyond the arc while adding three assists and one steal. Satchel McDonald had 16 points, five rebounds and five assists. Chad Kananen added 15 points and Jared Samuelson scored 13.
Carroll also hit 7 of 10 from deep and was good on 81.8 percent of their 22 free throws.
Ryan Imhoff led the Saints with 26 points, six rebounds and six steals.
The loss has Rocky tied with MSU-Northern for the No. 4 spot in the conference standings with five games to play. They will look to even their league record on Saturday when Montana Tech visits the Fortin Center. The action will begin at 7:30 p.m. and be broadcast live on SWX.