BILLINGS – Colstrip’s basketball guys have taken the court 13 times this season, every game ending in victory.
“We all thought we were going to be right there in the mix, at the top of the heap I think, so it feels good right now,” said head coach Joe Egan.
“Half this team, we’ve been playing varsity since our sophomore or freshman year,” said Colts guard Payton Means, “so we were just waiting on it, and everything kind of clicked this year so we kind of knew it was coming.”
That feeling has been made possible because the Colts know only one speed: very fast. The up-tempo style creates havoc on the defensive end, leading to easy buckets on offense.
“Keep the tempo up and keep going at them until they finally get fatigued,” Colts forward Isaiah Williams said. “Finally they slip up somewhere and that’s where we get them.”
Those 32 minutes of hell have worked to perfection. Colstrip is pouring in 72 points per game, while holding the opposition to merely 51 a night.
“We have guys that can play the perimeter and play inside,” said Egan, “and I just think it just gives us a lot of versatility, it really opens up our offensive playbook.”
“We got all seniors, juniors, a bunch of ballers, we can run,” said Williams. “We just have a lot of athleticism and people that can score, put the ball in the goal.”
That veteran leadership is hoping to set a new tradition when it comes to Colts basketball. Colstrip has not won a state title since 2000, and that was in Class A.
Since moving to Class B, the boys in green and gold have always been the hunters. Despite their record and No. 2 ranking in the state, that mindset has not changed.
“Playing hard every game, not underestimating anybody,” said Means. “We come in here thinking that they’re going to be the best team in the state and that’s how we got to play.”
Colstrip’s undefeated record proves that this team is really good, but not necessarily good enough. These guys want to best.
“If we win a state championship we won’t get people, like, dogging on us all the time, but it’s just fun,” said Williams.
“I mean, it’d be amazing, first of all, for the school, because we haven’t had one in forever,” continued Means. “But just knowing you gave it your all to get to there and take a state championship, so yeah, it would mean a lot.”
Those are dreams for the future. For now, these guys will listen to the old saying and take it one game at time starting Friday against Baker.