BILLINGS — Colstrip used a 14-0 run in the fourth quarter to separate from Columbus for a 42-28 win in the Southern B girls divisional title game on Saturday inside First Interstate Arena in Billings.
Leading 18-15 at halftime, Colstrip eventually had that lead trimmed to 28-26 at the beginning of the fourth quarter. Columbus then tied it with 7:02 to play, but Malea Egan put the game away for the Fillies. Egan ripped off six consecutive points to begin Colstrip's game-ending run to force a Columbus timeout.
Egan led all scorers with 20 points and also nabbed five steals.
"We're just resilient. We just keep hammering home and keep punching, keep punching until we get you weak. When I have somebody with that much speed, it's a blessing when she can steal it and go to the other end, rim to rim, it's nice," Johnson said of Egan.
Colstrip hasn't lost since an early December showdown with Jefferson, which finished third this weekend, and is using last year's 0-2 performance at the divisional tournament as motivation.
"Again, as Baily (Egan) talked about (Friday) and a lot of them talk about, it's their redemption season," Johnson said. "After getting beat out quick last year, they're fighting and clawing. They showed it on the court (Saturday). When they tie us up and they're right there with us, we've got to try and pull ahead a little bit. Finally, we were able to do what we normally do and take it away."
Colstrip will open the State B tournament against Glasgow at 3:30 p.m. on March 10 in Bozeman, while Columbus will face Malta at 9 a.m.