MISSOULA — The Missoula Hellgate Knights scored the first two points and never trailed from there as they moved to 6-0 with a 55-38 girls basketball crosstown win over Missoula Big Sky on Tuesday night.
Lauren Dick scored the first points right under the bucket for the Knights, and that proved to be the formula in Tuesday night's win as the Knights pounded the paint with their bigs.
Big Sky hung around early in the first quarter, scoring nine total points, most of them in the first few minutes. But Hellgate had its best quarter of the night as it scored 20 points and never looked back.
In the second quarter, Hellgate held steady on offense, scoring 13 points, but its defense tightened up as the Knights allowed Big Sky to score just seven points, their lowest-scoring quarter of the game.
The second half wasn't much different. Big Sky scored 14 points in the third quarter, but still trailed Hellgate by 17 points heading to the final eight minutes.
In the fourth quarter, Hellgate's offense majorly slowed down and ran the clock out, scoring only eight points in the quarter.
Big Sky pulled closer with free throws by the end, but time expired on their comeback.
"The tensions were there," said Hellgate head coach Rob Henthorn. "The communication was lacking on defense. (Big Sky) put a lot of shots up, they shot a lot of free throws, we've got to get better on the defensive side."
Hellgate's Alex Covill finished the night with a game-high 16 points.
"Alex looked big, she is big," said Henthorn. "She held onto the ball, she’s just a gamer. She wants to play the game and she continues to work hard."
Bailee Sayler added 12 points for the Knights as well. While the Knights are clearly happy with a 6-0 start, they know it means nothing at the end of the year without a title.
"We are still building that togetherness," said Henthorn. "We are building that team, we continue to work hard, I think the girls like playing the game. I think they continue to want to get better. 6–0 means nothing to us, every game is 0-0, whatever it may be, but we are in it to continue to get better."
Big Sky's Corbyn Sandau lead the Eagles with 11 points while Avari Batt added 10.
Big Sky will host Butte for its Senior Night Thursday at 7 p.m.
Hellgate will turn right around with another crosstown matchup against Sentinel on Thursday at 7:30 p.m.