Beavers split weekend conference games

Wednesday, January 15, 2020
Beavers split weekend conference games

Next man up

Dillon’s Jonathan Kirkley, a sophomore, looks for an open teammate during Dillon’s Friday night battle with Butte Central. Kirkley has stepped into the starting line-up with Justus Peterson out due to injury J.P. Plutt photo

The Dillon Beavers, without their top scorer for the near future, have doubled down on their longstanding approach to basketball – unrelenting, smothering defense. The Dillon “D” put Dillon in position for a potential upset win over undefeated Butte Central on Friday night, and lifted Dillon to a dominant win over Stevensville on Saturday.

“We were really happy with our defense,” said Dillon Hall of Fame Coach Terry Thomas. “Our guys have been working extremely hard in practice and it showed.”

Thomas said his team played about 90% man-to-man defense over the weekend.

“I thought we played with tremendous energy, they (Butte Central) just shot the ball a little bit better and made a couple of plays right at the end to win the game.”

Butte Central is traditionally a man-to-man team and focuses on defensive strategy so baskets were hard to come by in the 41-37 Maroon win. At halftime, Central led 16-14.

Justus Peterson, Dillon’s leading scorer before going down with an injury before Christmas, remains sidelined.

“We’er going to have to have some of the other guys pick up some of the scoring to give us a more diverse attack,” said Thomas. “It hurts a little bit, but Jonathan Kirkley has been starting the last two games and he has been doing a tremendous job.”

Versus Butte Central, Kirkley didn’t score, but he grabbed 8 rebounds, made 4 steals and dished 2 assists.

Jace Fitzgerald hooped 10 of his 15 points in a fourth quarter push to win the game. Junior Cole Truman scored 12 points as Dillon’s only other double digit scorer.

Fitzgerald joined Kirkley as the team’s rebounding leader with 8. Dillon outrebounded Central, 37-32.

“Obviously, we’re missing Justus’ scoring,” said Thomas.

At Stevensville, Dillon dominated from start to finish, winning 48-33 with all 12 players getting court time.

BUTTE CENTRAL 41, DILLON 37 Dillon scoring – Jonny Reiser 2, Cole Johnston 4, Braden Anderson 2, Cole Truman 12, Jonathan Kirkley 0, Connor Curnow 2, Jace Fitzgerald 15, Jade Morast 0, Callahan Hoffman 0.

Halftime – 16-14, Butte Central. Dillon three-pointers (2-13) – Johnston 0-1, Anderson 0-1, Truman 1-4, Kirkley 0-1, Curnow 0-1, Fitzgerald 2-5. Rebounds

(37) – Fitzgerald 8, Kirkley 8, Reiser 6. Steals (6) – Kirkley 4. Assists (10) – Reiser 3. Turnovers (12). Blocks (9) – Truman 3, Anderson 2, Fitzgerald 2.

STEVENSVILLE 33, DILLON 48 Dillon scoring – Jonny Reiser 0, Cole Johnston 5, Trace Gardner 0, Braden Anderson 9, Cole Truman 11, Jonathan Kirkley 7, Connor Curnow 3, Jace Fitzgerald 7, Jade Morast 2, Callahan Hoffman 2, Treyton Anderson 2, Eli Nourse 0.

Halftime – 35-17, Dillon. Dillon threepointers (5-23) – Reiser 0-1, Johnston 1-4, Gardner 0-1, Anderson 1-5, Truman 1-2, Kirkley 1-3, Curnow 1-3, Fitzgerald 0-4. Rebounds (19) – Kirkley 4. Steals (17) – Fitzgerald 4. Assists (14) – Fitzgerald 5, Anderson 4. Turnovers

(18). Blocks (2) – Hoffman 2.

Southwestern A boys basketball


conf. all Butte Central 4-0 9-0 Hamilton 2-1 7-2 Frenchtown 1-1 4-2 Dillon 1-2 4-3 Corvallis 1-2 4-3