MISSOULA – The Southwest A Conference seems to provide a great girls basketball game every night. And now the race for the title has become even tighter.
Butte Central held off Frenchtown, 50-49, in a back-and-forth clash Friday afternoon. The win improves the Maroons to 4-2 in league play and drops the Broncs to 4-2. The two teams are now in a three-way tie for the top spot in the Southwest A. Corvallis also improved to 4-2 with a 36-25 win at Hamilton Friday night.
Frenchtown took the lead early and extended the margin to 16-9 early in the second quarter. Butte Central came back with a series of 3-point shots, eventually taking a 25-24 advantage into the halftime locker room.
The two teams went back and forth in a very close second half. Tricia Joyce made the deciding play with a driving layup in the final minute to put the Maroons up 50-49. Frenchtown’s chance for a game winner in the final seconds bounced off the backboard and time expired.
The game was played at the Sister Rita Mudd Activity Center, the home of Missoula Loyola. A threat overheard of a possible school shooting caused Frenchtown to close school on Friday. So the game was moved due to safety concerns.