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Balanced No. 2 Red Lodge boys building off first State B appearance in 38 years

Posted at 9:22 PM, Jan 16, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-17 00:25:14-05

The Red Lodge boys snapped a 38-year drought between State B basketball tournament appearances last season, and they’ve rolled that momentum right into the 2023-24 campaign.

“It's really helped us a lot, because once you get a taste of that winning — we don't accept anything else," senior Walker Boos said. "Now we know we can win, so there's nothing else we'll accept other than winning."

“Being an athlete once you get a taste of winning it tastes pretty darn good," Red Lodge head coach Todd Buchanan said. "They recognize that they eleveated level of work they've put in the previous couple of seasons was the key ingredient. That work translated to an incredibly successful football season for a lot of these boys, and they're committed and selfless."

The Rams boast one of the more athletic teams you’ll find in all of Class B. Not only that, but they play with a certain edge to them, too.

“Competitiveness and physicality," senior Owen Reynolds said. "Just grit. We all want to win and we're super competitive."

“I think defensive is our best attribute," Thomas Buchanan said. "Offensively, if we're aggressive on defense and play our game we get to go have fun on offense. We're definitely taking the size to our advantage and mixing up the defense and presses and getting the most out of our size and athleticism that we can."

Depth is also one of the best assets Red Lodge possesses. There are eight guys with experience at last year’s state tournament, and it can be any one of them on any given night.

“Here's how we're looking at it — seven guys are averaging double digits in scoring. One guy goes out — Calvin Garmann — 33 points two Saturdays ago, doesn't score against Columbus. Doesn't hang his head one bit because he knows he's helping influence the outcome with his energy defensively, his size and efforts and helping the offense go," Todd Buchanan said.

The Rams have proven they can win any style, as evidenced by a 57-48 win over Columbus and another over Huntley Project where they hung 105 on the scoreboard.

The 8-0 Rams are going to be a tough out come tournament time.