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Northern C boys: Belt, Big Sandy will face off for championship

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Posted at 11:55 PM, Feb 24, 2023

GREAT FALLS — Belt defeated Box Elder in the first boys semifinal to advance to the championship game Saturday at 8:30 p.m. The Huskies sent Box Elder to the consolation bracket where they will face Chester-Joplin-Inverness Saturday morning at 11.

Big Sandy and Roy-Winifred battled for the final spot in Saturday’s championship game. After having to win one more game than every other team in the tournament, the Big Sandy Pioneers prevailed and will meet Belt in Saturday’s final.

Belt 54, Box Elder 51

Both the Huskies and the Bears came out firing from beyond the arc and maintained a decent percentage from the field. After trading basket for basket, it was Bet with a 17-14 advantage to end the first quarter. They were able to go on a run late in the second quarter allowing them to take a double digit lead with less than a minute to play in the half. That run was capped off by a Bridger Vogl three pointer that gave them a 32-18 half time lead.

The Bears came out the locker room chipping sway at the lead. Within the first two minutes of the third quarter, they were able to get it down to six points. They were able to cut it down to six on three separate occasions in the third quarter but Belt had answers for each of the Bears’ runs. Belt was able to push the lead back up to 10 by the end of the third quarter.

But it wasn’t over just yet. The Bears continued to fight back in this one. Down by four with less than two minutes, Alex Four Colors drills the midrange jumper to bring them within two. But Belt called on Bridger Vogl and he delivered with a step through bank shot to seal the deal and send them to Saturday’s championship game. Vogl finished with a game high 23 points, while Garrett Metrione added 15 for the Huskies. Tracen Jilot led the Bears with 16 points and 3 steals.

Big Sandy 64, Roy-Winifred 41

In a very physical opening quarter, Roy-Winifred cringed on to a 3 point lead as they were up 15-12. But the second quarter belonged to the Pioneers. Big Sandy controlled the tempo and capped off a big second quarter with a three pointer from Lane Demontiney to go ahead 30-21.

Big Sandy didn’t let up when they came out the locker room. By the three minute mark in the third quarter, the Pioneers had built up a 45-26 lead and carried all of the games momentum. Shad Boyce knocked down back to back 3-pointers in the third but it wasn’t enough to spark a run.

Big Sandy maintained a double-digit lead and dethroned last year’s Northern C champs. Big Sandy had four players in double digits: Kody Strutz with 17, Wylee Snap with 13, and Lane Demontiney and Isaac Pedraza with 12 each. Shad Boyce put up a game high 23 points for the Outlaws.