The Choteau High School boys basketball team improved to 4-3 in District 1B play last week, defeating Great Falls Central Catholic and Broadwater County High School.
The boys are now 9-3 overall and will be home on Jan. 31 to play Conrad with the junior varsity game at 4:30 p.m. and the varsity game at 7:30 p.m. On Feb. 1, they will travel to Boulder, where they will play a JV game at 2:30 p.m. and a varsity game at 5:30 p.m.
Earlier in the season, Choteau’s boys narrowly defeated Conrad and came up with a solid win at Boulder.
In last week’s game at GFCC, the Choteau boys jumped out to a 21-13 first-quarter lead and never let GFCC into the game. Choteau’s boys played solid defense and their offense was clicking. Senior Kolby Kovatch led the team with 32 points while Johnny Rappold tallied 18 in the win.
The Choteau boys struggled at the free-throw line, though, making just six of 19 attempts for a 32 percent success rate.
Against Townsend, the Choteau boys trailed, 12-11, after the first quarter but then in the second quarter, both teams played aggressive defense as they battled point for point with the score tied several times. Choteau was down by five in the mid-point of the quarter, but Choteau went on a late point run, scoring twice on free throws by Acton Snyder and then a basket by Snyder off a defensive rebound to bring Choteau within one point at 24-25. Townsend answered with a two-point shot by Braden Racht to lead, 27-24, with :02 on the clock. Choteau inbounded the ball to sub Brady Armstrong who nailed a huge three-pointer to tie the game, 27-27, at halftime.
Townsend came out in the second half with a few adjustments that held Choteau to just four points in the entire third quarter while the Broadwater County Bulldogs put up 11 to take a 38-31 lead into the fourth quarter.
Kyler Crabtree, Johnny Rappold and Snyder all made hoops early in the quarter, but at the mid-way point, Townsend led, 48-40. Choteau went on a little run, scoring on hoops by Kovatch and Snyder to draw within four points. Then Snyder nailed a three-pointer and hit two of three free-throws to make the score 49-50 with 2:29 left to play.
Townsend missed on its next shot and Crabtree grabbed the defensive rebound and Choteau scored on a two by Kovatch to take the lead, 51-50, with 2:00 on the clock.
Townsend’s Trey Hoveland hit a huge 3 to go up, 53-51, with 1:27 left. Choteau turned the ball over on its next possession and Townsend began to stall. Choteau fouled Tyler Christensen to stop the clock at :50 and Christensen missed the single shot.
Choteau scored on a deuce by Kovatch, who was fouled as he shot, and tied the game, 53-53. He missed his free-throw, which bounced off the rim and Choteau grabbed the offensive rebound. In the melee, Rappold scored a short jumper to put Choteau up, 55-53, with :27 on the clock.
Townsend missed its next shot and Rappold rebounded the ball and was fouled, giving Choteau an inbound under Townsend’s basket. The Choteau boys inbounded to Tony Daley, who was immediately fouled. Daley missed his free-throw and the ball went back to Townsend with :01.3 on the clock. The Townsend players put up one desperate long-distance shot which missed and Choteau had the narrow win.
Snyder led the Choteau boys with 15 points while Crabtree and Rappold each had 14 points. The boys made 60 percent of their free-throws.
Choteau 21-23-14-17 — 75
GFCC 13-15-20-11 — 59
Choteau — Acton Snyder 3 0/0 7, Kyler Crabtree 2 2/4 7, Johnny Rappold 7 4/9 18, Tony Daley 4 0/0 9, Jacob Brewster 1 0/0 2, Kolby Kovatch 13 2/4 32. Totals: 30 6/19.
GFCC — Shane Girres 3 1/2 7, Dillon Warren 2 0/2 5, Eli Vincent 2 0/0 5, Drew Newman 5 1/5 11, Nick Scott 1 0/0 2, Jackson Tarum 1 0/0 2, Cayle Schraner 6 4/7 16, Logan Warren 4 2/3 11. Totals: 24 6/19.
Fouls: Choteau 18, GFCC 15. Fouled out: none. Three-point goals: Snyder, Crabtree, Daley, Kovatch 4, D. Warren, Vincent, L. Warren.
Choteau 11-16-4-24 — 55
Townsend 12-15-11-15 — 53
Choteau — Acton Snyder 4 5/7 15, Kyler Crabtree 6 2/5 14, Johnny Rappold 6 2/2 14, Brady Armstrong 1 0/0 3, Kolby Kovatch 3 0/0 6, Keegan Thomas 1 0/0 3. Totals: 21 9/15.
Townsend — Trey Hoveland 3 2/2 9, Ryan Racht 2 0/0 4, Jesus Garcia 3 0/0 7, Nate Hill 3 0/0 6, Tyler Christensen 4 2/3 10, Devon Zeadow 4 5/9 13, Braden Racht 2 0/0 4. Totals: 21 9/14.
Fouls: Choteau 15, Townsend 14. Fouled out: none. Three-point goals: Snyder 2, Armstrong, Thomas, Hoveland, Garcia.