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Written by The Herald-News Saturday, 25 February 2012 12:55
The defending state champion Wolf Point Wolves managed to advance to divisionals in an upset-laden District 2B tournament, although their fourth-place seed pits them against Fairfield this week in Malta.
Malta and Wolf Point, the No. 1 and No. 2 seeded teams respectively at the District 2B tournament held in Wolf Point, both lost their opening matches Friday after getting first-round byes.
Malta fell 52-48 Friday to Glasgow, while Wolf Point fell Friday night to Plentywood, 61-57.
Wolf Point beat Harlem 80-50 Saturday to claim the fourth seed.
Malta beat Poplar 73-43 Saturday for the third seed. Plentywood beat Glasgow 49-37 in the championship game. Glasgow faces Conrad Thursday at the divisional tournament in Malta.
Malta takes on Choteau Thursday, while Plentywood takes on Cut Bank.
Wolf Point vs. Plentywood
The Wolves let the three-balls fly from the onset of the first-round match-up as juniors Easton Copenhaver and Mechiah Zilkoski got things started with 3-pointers to knot the game at 6-6.
The Wolves would ultimately put up 25 3-pointers against Plentywood, sinking nine.
Plentywood shot 7-for-13 from long range in the game.
After Plentywood got up 10-8, Wolf Point sophomore Tukker Toavs scored on an offensive rebound and Zilkoski hit a 3-pointer to make it 13-10 Wolves.
A free throw by Copenhaver, who was fouled at the buzzer ending the first quarter, made it 14-10 Wolves heading into the second quarter.
An inside bucket by Toavs early in the second quarter made it 16-11, but Plentywood senior Rob Nyby nailed a 3-pointer from the baseline to make it 16-14 Wolves.
A jumper from Copenhaver put the Wolves up 18-14, but a three-point play from Plentywood junior Tanner Sedgwick made it 18-17 as neither team could pull away from the other.
The teams shot well through the second half of the first quarter, resulting in a 28-25 halftime lead for Plentywood after a 3-pointer at the buzzer from Zilkoski.
Zilkoski didn’t cool off in the intermission as he came out guns blazing in the third quarter and sank another 3-pointer to knot it at 28-28.
Zilkoski scored on an offensive rebound to put the Wolves up 30-28.
The Wolf Point lead didn’t last long though as Nyby bounced in a 3-pointer to put the Wildcats up 31-30.
Shortly later, senior Taylor Hanks, who shot 0-for-12 from the field in the game, sank his only two points of the game on two free throws to make it 34-32 Plentywood.
Toavs followed with two more free throws to knot it at 34-34 midway through the third quarter.
Plentywood stretched the lead to 43-39 with a 3-pointer from senior Pres Harris to end the third quarter scoring.
Plentywood senior Cody Lindblom scored inside early in the fourth quarter as the Wildcats went up 45-39.
Zilkoski cut the lead with a pair of free throws, but Plentywood junior Brady Osksa scored inside to make it 47-41 Plentywood as the Wildcats’ size advantage began to pay big dividends in the paint.
Plentywood got up 52-35 with 2:37 to play as the Wolves looked for more 3-point opportunities.
Zilkoski scored from downtown to make it 52-48, but Plentywood sophomore Jackson Marsh hit a pair of free throws to make it 54-48.
Zilkoski hit another 3-pointer to make it 54-51 with 1:47 to go, but Plentywood converted free throws to stay ahead, 57-51, with less than a minute to go.
Wolf Point freshman Hayden Hanks scored a bucket on an offensive rebound to make it 57-53 Wildcats with 41 seconds left.
After a free throw from Plentywood senior Mark Angvick, Copenhaver converted a huge four-point play to make it 58-57 Wildcats with 17.6 seconds left.
A pair of free throws from Osksa made it 60-57 Plentywood with 9.1 seconds left.
The Wolves had one last chance, but Zilkoski’s 3-pointer was no good and went out of bounds, forcing the Wolves to foul immediately on the inbound play.
Osksa sank one of two free throws to put the game away and secure the 61-57 upset.
Zilkoski led all scorers with 25 points on five 3-pointers.
Copenhaver had 15 points, with three 3-pointers. Junior Layne Nelson had three points, while Hayden and Taylor Hanks finished with two points each.
Nyby led Plentywood with 19 points, shooting 5-for-9 from 3-point land.
Wolf Point vs. Harlem
The Wolves had little trouble against Harlem in Saturday’s loser-out game.
Wolf Point jumped out to a 12-0 lead midway through the opening period.
Harlem bounced back to make it 19-12 Wolves at the end of the first quarter
The Wolves, up 26-18, went on a scoring spurt to make it 32-18 after a fastbreak pass from Zilkoski to Taylor Hanks.
A 3-pointer from Zilkoski made it 45-20 with seconds to go in the first half.
Wolf Point got up 65-38 at the end of the third quarter as the Wolf Point reserves saw considerable playing time in the second half.
One Wolf Point reserve, junior Robbie Whitehawk, took advantage of his playing time, hitting three of four 3-pointers as the Wolves cruised to the 80-50 victory.
Taylor Hanks led Wolf Point with 17 points. Zilkoski had 14 points, Toavs had 12 points, Whitehawk had 10 points, junior Taylor Nygard had seven points, Hayden Hanks and freshman Tyson Bridges had six points each, Copenhaver had five points, and Nelson had three points.
Senior Sklyer Speakt- hunder led Harlem with 17 points.
For complete girls Dis- trict 2B coverage, see next week’s issue of The Herald- News.