By COLIN GAISER
The Daily Inter Lake
Only Wolfpack fans who love defense will call this one a ‘crosstown classic.’
Glacier allowed just three points in the first half on its way to a 36-24 first-round victory over Flathead at the Western AA Divisional girls basketball tournament on Thursday at Glacier High School.
It was Glacier’s third win in three games over Flathead this season.
No. 3 seed Glacier (13-6 overall) dominated in the paint on both ends of the court, while the No. 6 seed Bravettes (6-13) could not hit from long-range in the first half.
Down 19-1, Flathead was in danger of going into halftime without a single field goal. But Jenna Johnson made a nice baseline drive for a layup with just over a minute on the clock.
“Certainly a first half that was great for us ... We played great team defense together,” Glacier coach Bill Sullivan said.
Glacier was in control early in the second half as it built a 26-5 lead. But Flathead finally found some rhythm from beyond the arc, knocking down four triples to go on a 12-2 run between the third and fourth quarters.
Johnson buried two of them, including one from the corner to beat the buzzer at the end of the third.
The run cut the deficit to 30-20, though the Bravettes could get no closer.
Sullivan said he kept his team in a zone defense for too long, but was happy with how his team adjusted and closed the game.
“We stay in it a little too long and people are gonna get it figured out ... And certainly they [Flathead] got some open looks,” he said.
Kali Gulick had 10 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks for Glacier.
“She’s been our workhorse all year long. She works her tail off and does great things,” Sullivan said.
Aubrie Rademacher also finished with 10 points and Ellie Keller added eight.
“She [Keller] did a nice job at the point for us,” Sullivan said.
“She’s really the quarterback of the team ... keeps us moving and keeps us going. She does a great job.”
For the Bravettes, Johnson led the way with 13 points. Taylor Henley chipped in six, all in the third quarter.
The Wolfpack is back in action this evening at 6:30 for a semifinal battle with Helena Capital (17-2). Glacier fell to Capital 41-32 in Helena on Feb. 16.
Flathead will meet Missoula Big Sky (1-18) today at 11 a.m. in loser-out action.
Glacier 10 9 11 6 – 36
Flathead 1 2 11 10 – 24
GLACIER – Kali Gulick 10, Kaileigh Crawford 2, Aubrie Rademacher 10, Ellie Keller 8, Raley Shirey 6.
FLATHEAD – Maddie Walter 1, Kennedy Kanter 4, Jenna Johnson 13, Taylor Henley 6.
Missoula Hellgate 44,
Missoula Sentinel 26
Hellgate used a big second quarter to pull away for the 18-point victory over Sentinel.
Hellgate, up 10-8 after the first eight minutes of play, outscored Sentinel 20-5 to take a 30-13 halftime lead.
Six players scored for Hellgate, led by Addy Heaphy with 11.
Sentinel’s Lexi Deden led all scorers with 13 points.
Hellgate was 16 of 42 shooting from the field to Sentinel’s 10 of 38.
Hellgate held the edge in rebounds, 32-26.
Brooke Stayner had a team-high six rebounds for Sentinel.
Bailee Sayler had eight rebounds and Emma Blakely seven for Hellgate.
Hellgate (12-7) advances to semifinal play today at 3:30 p.m. against top-seed Helena High (17-1), which had a first-round bye.
Sentinel (8-11) falls to loser-out play on Saturday at 9:30 a.m.
Missoula Sentinel 8 5 9 4 — 26
Missoula Hellgate 10 20 7 7 — 44
SENTINEL — Challis Westwater 4, Kodi Fraser 3, Lexi Deden 13, Brooke Stayner 2, Megan Hamilton 4.
HELLGATE — Addy Heaphy 11, Emma Blakely 8, Bailee Sayler 7, Lauren Dick 6, Kylie Lunday 8, Perry Paffhausen 4.
Helena Capital 58,
Missoula Big Sky 19
The No. 2 seed Bruins trounced Big Sky in first-round action.
Capital (17-2) had a 14-3 lead after the first quarter and a 29-9 lead at the half.
Sydney Sheridan led the way for the Bruins with 14 points. Megan Lindbo had 13 and Emily Kidder 10.
Dani Bartsch led the team in rebounds with seven.
Capital was 7 of 15 on 3-pointers. Sheridan and Kidder each had two triples.
Mia Sandau had a team-high five points for the Eagles (1-18).
Capital meets Glacier (13-6) in semifinal action this evening at 6:30.
Big Sky will play Flathead in a loser-out game today at 11 a.m.
Helena Capital 14 15 24 5 – 58
Missoula Big Sky 3 6 6 4 – 19
CAPITAL – Megan Lindbo 13, Paige Bartsch 8, Sydney Sheridan 14, Emily Kidder 10, Dani Bartsch 6, Jaymee Sheridan 2, Nicole Ames 5.
BIG SKY – Elly Thorpe 1, Mia Sandau 5, Corbyn Sandau 3, Demi Smith 3, Avari Batt 4, Isa Reed 1, Abbe Feilzer 2.