The Choteau High School boys basketball team will play Shelby at home on Feb. 7 and will be on the road Feb. 8 to Cut Bank. The Bulldogs may also play a make-up game against the Jefferson County High School Panthers of Boulder though a date has yet to be set.
School officials cancelled Choteau’s planned trip to Boulder on Feb. 1 as high winds ranging from 106 mph in Glacier County to 89 mph west of Bynum and 74 mph in Choteau made travel hazardous for high-profile vehicles along the Rocky Mountain Front.
CHS Athletic Director John Shepherd on Monday said he was working with Jefferson County High School to try to re-schedule the nonconference road game.
The Choteau boys are now ranked third in District 1B behind No. 1 Fairfield and No. 2 Shelby. Choteau is 10-3 overall and 5-3 in conference.
Coach Austin Schilling on Monday said the Choteau boys will be working hard in practice this week to prepare for games against Shelby and Cut Bank.
The CHS boys will play a junior varsity game at 4:30 p.m. and a varsity game at 7:30 p.m. against Shelby, a team that beat them badly earlier in the season. Coach Schilling said the boys have been making adjustments on both offense and defense since the loss to Shelby on Jan. 10, to make them better able to withstand Shelby’s height advantage.
While Choteau defeated Cut Bank here on Jan. 11, Schilling said his team needs to be ready mentally and physically to play the Cut Bank boys on their home court. Cut Bank has two of the best guards in the conference, Schilling said, and the team is well coached and always up for playing Choteau.
In last week’s single home game against Conrad, Choteau led, 20-16, at the end of the quarter and then outscored Conrad 14-18 in the second quarter to take a 34-24 lead into the locker room at halftime. Conrad tried to rally early in the third quarter, but Choteau’s offense surged and the Bulldogs outscored Conrad 21-9, going up 55-33 at the end of the third quarter.
Choteau’s tough man-to-man defense continued to hold Conrad’s players down, keeping all but one Cowboy scorer in single digits.
Choteau was led by Kyler Crabtree with a season high 22 points, followed by Johnny Rappold with 18 points, Kolby Kovatch with 14 points and Tony Daley with 10 points.
Schilling said the boys faced a Conrad team without 6-foot-3 starter Kade Harwood, who had 18 points against Choteau earlier in the season, but the Cowboys still put up a fight and had a big height advantage on the Bulldogs.
Overall, he said, he was very pleased with how hard the boys played on defense, frustrating Conrad’s inside and outside shooters, and with their offensive production, resulting in four players in double digits and seven players scoring.
Choteau 2-14-21-19 — 74
Conrad 16-8-9-16 — 49
Choteau — Acton Snyder 0 3/4 3, Gage Cummings 1 0/0 2, Kyler Crabtree 8 3/3 22, Johnny Rappold 8 2/6 18, Tony Daley 3 2/4 10, Oliver Jorden 2 1/4 5, Kolby Kovatch 5 4/5 14. Totals: 27 15/26.
Conrad — Jarek Shepherd 3 0/0 9, Caden Huntsinger 4 2/3 11, Brady Bokma 2 0/0 4, Ethan Wittmier 4 1/2 9, Deron Baney 4 1/2 9, Drew Ginther 1 0/0 3, Mark Doty 1 2/6 4. Totals: 19 6/13.
Fouls: Choteau 14, Conrad 18. Fouled out: Kovatch. Three-point goals: Crabtree 3, Daley 2, Shepherd 3, Huntsinger, Ginther.