#1 Beavers blitz #3 Maroons, 60-28

The Dillon Beavers dominated the Butte Central Maroons 60-28 last Thursday in Butte. Dillon’s win all but assured the Beavers of the regular season conference crown. Jess Alberi photo

 

The top-ranked Dillon Beavers asserted their dominance over the third-ranked Butte Central Maroons last Thursday, 60-28. The win all but assures the Beavers of the top seed at the Southwestern A divisional when the teams gather at Butte’s Maroon Activities Center Feb. 27-March 1. Dillon would have to lose all three of their remaining conference games to lose their grip on the top seed.

“It was an impressive performance by our players from start to finish, in all areas,” said Dillon coach Terry Thomas of the road win. “I thought defensively, they were just tremendous in their energy, their communication, their pressure on the ball in full-court and half-court and that set the stage for the evening.”

Since becoming head basketball coach for the Beavers, the blue and gold have focused mainly on a 1-3-1 zone defense to confound the opposition. This year Thomas has successfully merged a man-to-man concept into the game plan.

“In our zone, we did a nice job of moving when the ball was in the air, arriving so that there wasn’t any separation for them to get off a clean look, and we did that throughout the course of the game both in zone and man so they didn’t get any easy baskets or easy looks,” said the Dillon coach.

Thomas estimated that in this game the Beavers were in man-to-man at least one-half the time, particularly in the press situations. In other possessions, Dillon fell back into the reliable 1-3-1 zone.

“We’ve been playing consistently more man this year than we have in the past,” explained Thomas. “It has a lot to do with pressing, a lot to do with picking up the tempo of the game so that we can get more players in and use our bench.”

Central’s Nate Bolstad is one of the top offensive options in the conference, but the Beavers held the senior to 9 points.

“In the man-to-man, Troy (Scott) was on him for the most part, although we switch an all screens to everybody ended up defending him a little,” said Thomas.

Dillon took a 37-18 lead at halftime, and any hope Central had of a second half rally was squashed in the third quarter when Dillon blasted the Maroons 15-1.

Senior Troy Scott continues to lead the Beavers on the scoreboard, hitting for 17 points. Junior Justin Ferris added 14 points, including a 4-of-5 night shooting from the three-point arc.

All 13 Dillon players played and nine scored, while 12 players grabbed at least one rebound, topped by Jason Ferris’ 5 boards.

“Offensively, I thought we did a tremendous job of being patient, sharing the basketball and getting quality shots,” said Thomas of Dillon’s attack. “Butte Central plays hard man-to-man so we moved the ball consistently in our passing game until we found a break-down. Sometimes it was in the form of a drive, sometimes it was in the form of an outside shot, and sometimes we caught a cutter to the basket.”

The Beavers will host AA Butte High Thursday evening at B.W. Lodge Gym. Butte High has struggled this year, but have been playing much better of late, said the Dillon coach. They have lost to Butte Central, but battled AA power Bozeman to within 4 points recently.

 

#1 DILLON 60, #3 BUTTE CENTRAL 28

Dillon scoring – Chance Kluesner 0, Tyler Jory 0, Trae Williams 9, J.D. Ferris 3, Parker Love 4, Mate Simkins 5, Justin Ferris 14, Carson Turner 0, Troy Scott 17, Nick Huber 0, Tanner Haverfield 2, Jason Ferris 4, Brady Richardson 2.

Three-pointers (9-18) – Williams 1-1, J.D. Ferris 0-1, Love 0-1, Simkins 1-2, Justin Ferris 3-4, Scott 3-7, Haverfield 0-1. Rebounds (26) – Jason Ferris 5, Love 4. Blocks (2) – Haverfield 2. Turnovers (16). Steals (15) – Williams 3, Simkins 3, Scott 3. Assists (11) – Williams 4, Justin Ferris 3.