Hoop season resumes for Flathead, Glacier boys

Print Article

For Flathead and Glacier, it’s been practice, practice, practice with a few games thrown in along the way.

And that’s fine with both boys head basketball coaches — Flathead’s Ross Gustafson and Glacier’s Mark Harkins.

“Thirty practices and four games,” Gustafson said thus far.

“With this group, that’s OK because we were relatively inexperienced.”

Harkins has also adjusted to that schedule.

“It’s been like that the last couple of years,” Harkins said.

“It’s OK. It gives us a chance to work on things.”

Flathead is off to a 2-2 start overall with Glacier checking in at 1-3. All four contests for both teams were nonconference.

Flathead returns one starter in 6-foot-2 senior guard Anthony Jones. Stephen Bridges, a 6-3 senior guard, was the team’s sixth man a year ago.

“Only two with varsity experience,” Gustafson said.

Flathead opened the season with double-digit losses in Great Falls, but bounced back to beat Columbia Falls and Butte.

“We didn’t have a great weekend,” Gustafson said of the trip to the Electric City.

“In the subsequent weeks, we have really stepped it up.”

Gabe Adams, a 6-5 sophomore forward/center, leads the Braves in scoring. He is averaging 9.5 points per game.

“We don’t have a consistent 18- or 20-point type scorer,” Gustafson said.

“We do have three guys who will get maybe eight, 10 or 12 in a game. We’re pretty balanced.”

Gustafson has been pleased with his team’s hustle on defense.

“We could be pretty tough defensively,” he said.

“We are showing some promise. I am happy with the way things are coming along.”

Offensively …

“Doing well,” Gustafson said.

“Sharing the basketball and team balance.”

The one negative has been turnovers.

“Been a work in progress,” he said.

“Just take care of the ball, value the basketball a little more.”

Flathead has two games on the schedule this week, both nonconference — tonight at Whitefish (7:30) and home Saturday with Post Falls, Idaho (2:45).

Glacier is on the court just once this week, entertaining Post Falls tonight (6).

Glacier graduated eight seniors from last year’s squad, so Harkins says the Wolfpack has “a lot of learning to do” on the court.

Although the inexperience has been a factor in the team’s slow start, two of the team’s losses were by 10 points or less. The other one was a 16-point loss to Great Falls C.M. Russell in the opener.

“Very athletic,” Harkins said of his team.

“They play very, very hard. We just have to get our level of play up to the varsity level.”

The one negative has been ball control.

“Turnovers are a problem,” he said.

“Other than that, we have done some really good things.”

Harkins said the Wolfpack is shooting the ball “very well from perimeter — almost 40 percent from behind the arc. When we shoot like that, it opens things up in the middle.”

Bret Michaels and Drew Engellant have been the team’s consistent scorers.

Michaels, a 6-3 senior guard, tallied a season high 23 against Bozeman and led the way against CMR with a team-best 10.

Engellant, a 6-5 junior forward, netted a season high 18 points at Great Falls High and shared scoring honors with 6-0 junior guard KJ Johnson in a victory at Columbia Falls with 12 apiece.

Engellant, an honorable-mention all-conference selection last year as a sophomore, will be counted on heavily this year to carry the scoring load.

“Finding the right chemistry,” Harkins said of what he’s looking for now.

“We’re changing lineups every game.

“I’m just excited for the season,” he added.

“We’re ready to roll.”

Glacier opens Western AA play on Tuesday at Missoula Big Sky.

Flathead starts Western AA action on Thursday hosting Big Sky.

The following night — Friday — it’s the first crosstown game of the season at Glacier starting at 8 p.m. The second crosstown contest is Feb. 5 at Flathead.

The regular season ends at home for Flathead on Feb. 23 versus Missoula Hellgate.

Glacier’s finale is Feb. 22 at home with Missoula Sentinel.

The Western AA divisional follows Feb. 28, March 1-2 at Glacier. The state tournament is scheduled for March 7-9 at the Butte Civic Center.

NOTE: Glacier High School is participating in the Coaches vs. Cancer 3-Point Challenge. High schools and colleges have joined together to raise money for the fight against cancer. Individuals can make a pledge for every 3-pointer the Glacier varsity team makes this month, or individuals can make a one-time donation. All money raised goes to the American Cancer Society. To make a donation, or pledge, go to https://pledgeit.org/cvc19-glacier-high-school-mt. To see how Glacier is doing in the challenge, check out the national leaderboard at 3PointChallenge.org.

Class AA Standings

Western Division

League Overall

W L W L

Missoula Hellgate 1 0 4 1

Missoula Sentinel 0 0 4 3

Flathead 0 0 2 2

Helena High 0 0 3 4

Helena Capital 0 0 2 3

Glacier 0 0 1 3

Missoula Big Sky 0 1 1 6

Eastern Division

League Overall

W L W L

GF C.M. Russell 0 0 5 0

Great Falls High 0 0 4 0

Bozeman 0 0 4 1

Billings Skyview 0 0 5 2

Billings West 0 0 2 2

Butte 0 0 1 4

Billings Senior 0 0 0 5

Print Article

Read More Local Sports

Wolfpack falls to Capital by 20 in loser out

March 09, 2019 at 6:00 am | Daily Inter Lake BUTTE — The Glacier Wolfpack (15-10) fell to Helena Capital 56-36 on Saturday, eliminating them from the Class AA state girls basketball tournament at the Butte Civic Center. A win would have put...

Comments

Read More

Wildkats 3rd at state basketball

March 09, 2019 at 6:00 am | Daily Inter Lake GREAT FALLS — After three consecutive 9 a.m. games and a clash with a team that crushed them 58-29 on the first day of the tournament, you could not have blamed the Columbia Falls Wildkats for comi...

Comments

Read More

Class B State Basketball Victorious Vikings

March 08, 2019 at 6:00 am | Daily Inter Lake The Daily Inter Lake BELGRADE — Back-to-back for Bigfork. The Vikings (22-2) repeated as Class B state boys basketball champions on Friday evening with a thrilling 47-43 comeback victory over M...

Comments

Read More

Class AA State Basketball Glacier girls beat Billings Senior, 52-33

March 08, 2019 at 6:00 am | Daily Inter Lake BUTTE — After a lackluster start to the Class AA state girls basketball tournament the day before, the Glacier Wolfpack more than made up for it on Friday, beating Billings Senior in loser-out play...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

News: (406) 837-5131
Advertising: 406-758-4410
Bigfork Eagle
c/o Daily Inter Lake
PO Box 7610
Kalispell, MT 59904

©2019 Bigfork Eagle Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X