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Harlowton-Ryegate boys turn attention to first State C tournament in 15 years

Posted at 4:17 PM, Mar 05, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-05 18:43:34-05

MILES CITY — The average price for a gallon of gas the last time the Harlowton boys won a divisional basketball title? One dollar and 12 cents, as 39 long years passed before the Engineers claimed the first-place trophy at the Southern C tournament in Miles City this past weekend.

It's also Harlowton-Ryegate's first State C tournament appearance since 2009.

“It definitely feels good bringing one back for Harlo. We haven't done that in 39 years and it feels amazing to do that for the community, but we're not done. We want to do some damage at state," senior guard Bergen Mysse said.

Engineers head coach Jonathan Olsen sadi the work began in track last season after the team was bounced early in the district tournament as the top seed. That’s fueled the run through both football and basketball seasons.

“We've definitely been thinking about that all year and prepping through the summer. We've had it in the back of our heads every game," senior forward Angus Glennie said. "We came out at districts and played (Custer-Hysham) and wanted to make sure that didn't happen again. We basically just learned from our mistakes in the past."

“We didn't like that. Losing as the top seed doesn't feel good. We'd beaten them twice that year and it just wasn't a good feeling," Mysse said. "We knew we had to work. To get to the state tournament we had to put in a lot of time and come back strong."

There were stumbles for the Engineers throughout this hoops season. Injuries early in the year had the Engineers sitting at 4-3 at the Christmas break, but they’ve since gone 15-1 and are peaking at the right time.

“We were clicking on all cylinders, I felt, when we hit tournaments. We were playing our best basketball," Mysse said. "That's when you want to be playing your best basketball is February and March, so it feels good to be back at full strength and healthy."

The Engineers are making their first State C appearance this weekend since 2009 and will take on Plentywood in the opening round on Wednesday at 6 p.m.