GLASGOW -- The two district champions entering the Eastern C boys basketball divisional tournament have set up a date in Saturday night's title game, as Fairview had a monster second half to knock off Dodson and Scobey ran past Froid-Medicine Lake in Thursday's semifinals at Glasgow High School.
Fairview 59, Dodson 39
Fairview flipped a switch in the second half.
The Warriors trailed after the first quarter by three points and led by five at halftime, but they outscored Dodson 17-4 in the third quarter to grab a comfortable 18-point lead after three quarters on their way to an emphatic 59-39 win.
Defensive intensity keyed Fairview’s big second half, as Dodson made just one shot in the third quarter and turned the ball over numerous times against Fairview’s full-court press. Dodson shot just 22.2 percent in the second half.
“I just told them we have to get back to Fairview ways. Get up in their face, pressuring them, sprinting around. The boys really responded well to it in that third quarter and we came out pretty hot," Fairview head coach Ty Hurley said.
Fairview big man Josh Herron put constant pressure on the interior of Dodson's defense throughout the game. Herron finished with 11 points, seven rebounds and a game-high four assists.
"Josh is great down low one-on-one. When someone is playing behind him, he moves very well with his feet. He's very quick," Hurley said. "When they send a double team, he's very good about getting the ball up high and passing it to our guard who are relocating. He's a very good athlete for us."
Fairview will meet Scobey in Saturday's championship game. Dodson falls to loser-out action and will play Lustre Christian Friday at 3 p.m. Scobey and Fairview have met in the previous two Eastern C title games, with Scobey winning both matchups.
Scobey 53, Froid-Medicine Lake 45
It wasn't as easy as Scobey has made it look all year, but the Spartans are advancing to the Eastern C title game after a hard-fought 53-45 win over Froid-Medicine Lake in the semifinals.
Froid-Medicine Lake built a 9-2 lead early in the first quarter, but Scobey battled back to eventually tie things at 12-all. Neither side would hold a lead larger than three the rest of the half, but the Spartans would enter with the halftime lead after a 3-pointer at the buzzer by Aidan Fishell from dead on to turn the tide.
"It was just momentum. We had struggled to score and we had missed quite a few outside shots. Just to get that one in and go through the hoop, I think it kind of gave our guys some energy," Scobey head coach Jason Wolfe said.
Scobey would carry that momentum into the third quarter, where the Spartans finished the quarter on a 10-0 run to lead 41-33 entering the fourth quarter. After settling for several quick 3-point attempts in the first half, the Spartans began to carve up the Redhawks' zone defense with Caden Handran, who made several spectacular passes out of the high post.
"When we get 3s that start and initiate out of the post, there's a lot more rhythm to it," Wolfe said. "Caden just has a knack for finding guys. He has incredible vision. He's really smart and understands where everyone is at on the floor."
The Spartans led by as many as 11 in the fourth, but Froid-Medicine Lake was able to trim it to six, 48-42, on a triple by eighth grader Mason Dethman. After Scobey couldn't convert at the foul line, the Redhawks eventually trimmed the lead to 49-45 with 1:04 to play. A pair of empty offensive possession and free throws from Scobey put the game on ice.
"It's something that concerns me because we haven't shot the ball well from the free throw line. We've got guys that are capable, we just didn't get it in the right guys' hands (Thursday)," Wolfe said.
Brayden Cromwell led Scobey with 16 points. Handran had six points, 15 rebounds, nine assists and four blocked shots. Colt Miller had a 16-point, 10-rebound double-double for Froid-Medicine Lake.
Scobey will meet Fairview in a rematch of the 2018 and 2019 Eastern C title games. The two teams met once early this season, with Scobey winning 52-49 back on Dec. 13. Froid-Medicine Lake will play Westby-Grenora in loser-out action on Friday at 4:30 p.m.
"They've just got a tremendous culture over there," Wolfe said of Fairview. "It starts with their kids. They've got a winning culture. You saw that in football this year, you've seen that with their basketball programs in the past. We've had a tremendous rivalry since I've been coaching. It's just fun. It's a real fun environment when we get together."