Friday’s Hot Ticket: Tech, Butte High hoops

College women’s basketball
Montana Tech at University of Great Falls, 5:30 p.m.

The Orediggers (4-12, 8-19) can clinch a berth in the Frontier Conference tournament with a win as they take on the No. 23 Argos (10-6, 19-9). The Argos won the first two meetings. Senior guard Erin Legel averages 16.0 points per game to pace the Argos. Forward Nneka Nnadi adds 15.7 points. Junior Martha Dembek is playing her best ball of the season. The reigning Frontier Conference Player of the Week scored a career-high 29 points Saturday as the Orediggers won their second straight game. She averages 11.1 points per game. Classmate Hattie Thatcher averages 12.2 points per game for the Orediggers, who close the regular season Saturday at MSU-Northern.

College men’s basketball
Montana Tech at University of Great Falls, 7:30 p.m.

The season is on the line for the Orediggers (3-13, 8-20) in the nightcap. With two games left, the Argos (4-12, 11-14) hold a one-game edge over the Orediggers in the race for the final playoff spot. Tech owns the tiebreaker because it won the first two meetings with the Argos, but the Orediggers would be eliminated with a loss tonight. Great Falls is coming off Saturday’s upset win over Carroll College. Guard Darren Lockett came off the bench to score 15 points to lead the Argos balanced attack in that win. Tech sophomore guard Jalen Coates, the reigning Frontier Conference Player of the Week, is averaging 26 points per game in the four games since he was moved to the No. 2 spot. He averages a team-leading 18.9 points per game overall.

Prep girls’ basketball
Billings Senior at Butte High, 7:30 p.m.

The Bulldogs (2-9, 2-17) close out the regular season against the Broncs (7-3, 10-8) in the Eastern AA game at the Ross J. Richardson Memorial Gymnasium. There will be no Senior Night celebration because Butte High has no seniors on its roster. The Broncs won the first meeting of the two teams, winning 65-25 Feb. 6 in Billings. Freshman Courtney Bad Bear scored 14 points to lead the Broncs in that win. Freshman Kola Bad Bear averages a team-leading 12.3 points per game, while senior Jeanann Lemelin scored 11.0 for the Broncs, who have won three straight. Freshman Ally Cleverly averages 9.2 points per game to pace the Bulldogs. Junior Abby Dodge averages 7.6 points and 6.2 rebounds. She scored a team-leading 10 points in the loss to Senior. The game won’t affect Butte High’s postseason schedule. The Bulldogs will host Billings Skyview in an Eastern AA playoff game on Tuesday.

Prep boys’ basketball
Butte High at Billings Senior, 7:30 p.m.

The Bulldogs (2-9, 4-15) look to enter the playoffs on a high note as close the regular season against the Broncs (4-6, 9-9) in the Eastern AA game. The Bulldogs won the first meeting, knocking off Senior 62-55 Feb. 6 at the Civic Center. Junior Brock Powell scored 16 points in that win. Classmate Evan Anderson tossed in 11. Powell averages a team-best 11.5 points and 7.6 rebounds. Junior Ryson Lovshin averages 10.3 points. Sophomore Braxton Haws averages 14.2 points per game to lead the Broncs. He scored 17 in the first meeting with the Bulldogs. Junior guard Nathan Dick averages 10.7 points. Win or lose Friday, Butte High will host Great Falls Russell in an Eastern AA playoff game on Tuesday.

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