HELENA -- A win is a win in Class AA boys basketball, and the Helena Capital Bruins know that after they fought tooth and nail to down their crosstown rival Helena High Bengals on Jan. 23. The Bruins picked up a win by a score of 56-43.
After the game, Bruins head coach Guy Almquist noted that it was the first time his team found a way to win a game like that. Now as the Bruins prepare to take on the final two teams in the Western AA they've yet to face, Almquist said there's a couple of things that stood out to him.
"Offensively we're a little impatient. We had 17 turnovers and many in a two-on-one, three-on-two (fast-break opportunities), where we've excelled all year, getting easy buckets. We didn't make the right play in many of those cases, and I think just a little bit amped up," said Almquist. "I think our shot selection, we weren't quite patient enough. Turn the ball a couple more times and maybe get a better shot. We weren't shooting terrible shots, but we weren't shooting great shots, either."
For the Bengals, the loss brought a bit of clarity. Obviously, no team wants to tally another loss, but head coach Brandon Day saw through that.
"The biggest thing was that our effort was there on Friday night and that's something we need to make sure we continue through the rest of the season," Day said. "I'm very proud of the way the boys played. It was just some of the mental aspects that we really need to clean up."
Whether it's cleaning up shot selection, or re-centering the mental aspect of the game, both the Helena Capital and Helena High boys will play host to the Kalispell schools on Jan. 30 and 31. The Helena High boys will open things up against the Glacier Wolfpack while the Bruins will host the Flathead Braves, before both teams switch opponents to round out the first half of Western AA play.