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Montana extends double-digit win streaks over Wyoming with Friday night sweep

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Posted at 9:18 PM, Jun 09, 2023

GILLETTE — Montana extended its double-digit win streaks on both the boys and girls sides of the Montana-Wyoming all-star basketball series with a Friday night sweep in Gillette.

Montana 73, Wyoming 44 (girls)

Hamilton's Layne Kearns flipped a switch to lead the Montana girls to a 73-44 victory over Wyoming in Gillette on Friday night.

With Montana trailing 8-0 early, head coach Wes Keller made a line change. In the new five was Kearns, who ripped off 16 first-quarter points as Montana scored 18 straight and led 23-9 after one quarter. Kearns finished with 22.

Montana kept its foot on the gas and built a 19-point halftime lead.

"The first group I think was a little nervous and they were turning it over, so I tried the other group and I think it was an 18-0 run. Give that other group credit. Next-man-up mentality," Keller said.

Montana won every quarter and built a 23-point lead entering the final frame. The win marks Montana's 12th consecutive in the series and moves Montana's all-time advantage to 38-13. Keller is 14-1 as head coach of Montana.

Montana 92, Wyoming 44 (boys)

The streak lives at least one more night.

Montana came out of the locker room at halftime and throttled Wyoming on Friday night in Gillette for a 92-44 win and head coach Steve Keller's 21st consecutive in the series. He's a perfect 21-0 since taking over.

"It's a long trip. They guarded and played good defense in the second half. We started running our offense better and making the extra pass. They're fun to watch," Steve Keller said.

Montana held an eight point lead, 35-27, at halftime but came out of the locker room and essentially put the game to rest. By the end of the third quarter the Montana lead ballooned to 29, as Montana out-scored Wyoming 26-5 in the first 10 minutes out of the locker room.

"We asked them to bring more intensity, and they did. On defense, right away I think we had eight points in one minute. We always talk about winning the first five minutes. The first group won their five and the second group won that five," Keller said.

Royce Robinson led a balanced attack for Montana finishing with 18 points. Dougie Peoples added 16 while Seth Amunrud finished with 13.

According to Rocky Erickson Sports, the 136 combined points in the boys game is the lowest total in the 93 games of the series. The 44 points scored by Wyoming is the fewest by a boys team in the series and the 48-point margin of victory is the third largest in the history.

The win improves Montana's advantage in the series to 66-27. Saturday's contests will be held at Lockwood High School.