LAUREL — The Plenty Coups Warriors overcame an eight-point halftime deficit and rallied late in the final quarter to stun Wibaux 61-57 and earn a spot in the Southern C boys basketball championship game.
Tel Lunde and Cobe Begger led a first-half charge by Wibaux as the Longhorns led 34-26 at the break. Wibaux shot 40 percent in the first half and made 12 free throws. Plenty Coups only attempted nine free throws as a team in the opening half.
The second half started and Plenty Coups came out firing. The Warriors turned up the defensive pressure and the long range shots started dropping. A top-of-the-key triple from Clarence Stewart gave Plenty Coups the lead at 44-41 with less than a minute left in the third quarter.
Wibaux quickly responded in the fourth. Begger put back his own miss and Wibaux held a three-point advantage with five minutes left in the game.
Wibaux held onto the advantage until 1:30 remained. Plenty Coups had the ball and was looking for the lead. Kevion Ladson answered the call. Ladson drained a deep 3-pointer from the wing to give the Warriors a 54-52 lead.
It was 58-55 with 12 seconds remaining and Wibaux had a chance to tie. The Longhorns turned to Lunde. Lunde went for the step-back but lost the ball on the way up. The Warriors got the steal and passed ahead to J’Ree Old Bull, who supplied the dagger plus the foul.
Old Bull scored 11 points to join three other Warriors in double figures. Brendan Falls Down led the way with 13 points and Ladson added 12.
Wibaux was led by Lunde with 24 and Begger with 20 points.
Melstone and Park City met in the nightcap for a chance to join Plenty Coups in the title game. It was all Broncs all the time on Friday night.
Melstone and star Brody Grebe jumped out to a 24-10 lead after one quarter and never looked back as they rolled 77-37.
The Broncs put the game away in the first half as they hit triple after triple, many coming off assists from Grebe. Melstone led 47-15 at the half and was never threatened the rest of the night.
Melstone will play Plenty Coups Saturday night for the Southern C championship.