Badovinac leads BC girls past Blue Devils

Badovinac leads BC girls past Blue Devils
Butte Central's Brooke Badovinac goes up for a shot as Corvallis' Emelia Schairer defends Thursday night at the Maroon Activities Center. Schairer was called for a foul on the play. (Bill Foley photo)

By Bruce Sayler 

 Layups were the energizer bunnies for Butte Central Thursday night in its 67-46 Southwestern A Conference high school girls’ basketball win over Corvallis in the Maroon Activities Center. 

The BC girls came up with 15 steals, rattled the Blue Devils into 29 turnovers and also took advantage of some fast-break baskets off of rebounds leading to easy scores in the decisive win. 

“I had a lot of and-ones,” acknowledged junior Brooke Badovinac, who wore the nets out with 35 points for Butte Central. “Our energy was down, tonight. It was an awkward game. We got a talk at halftime to step up our energy and give it our all. Our pressing (defense) gave us all of our energy, I think. 

“After halftime, we didn’t have to play offense. The press gave us layups.” 

The Maroons led by only 28-25 at halftime before head coach Meg Haran ordered the tougher press and higher-percentage offensive plan. Badovinac was the focus with her taking the ball to the hoop, and also in her caging three 3-point field goals. She was 12-for-21 from the field, including a perfect 3-for-3 from beyond the arc. Badovinac scored 20 of her points in the second half on her way to tying the second-highest single-game points total in BC girls’ basketball history. 

Butte Sports Hall of Fame Kellie Johnson hooped the school-record 42 in a 1996 win over Whitehall 10 years after Julie (Leary) Nadeau notched 35 for Butte Central while beating Stevensville in 1986.  

At least 31 of the Maroons’ points were scored as a result of layups. 

The team was again without injured senior leader Sofee Thatcher, who watched the show from the bench in street clothes. Sophomore Mollie Drew started in her place. 

“We won,” Murphy said in survivor tones. “We definitely are a different team without Sofee. We battled hard in the third quarter. I thought we had dead legs, tonight, but Brooke and Ella (Moodry) both had big games.” 

Moodry, a sophomore, tossed in 19 points and grabbed eight rebounds. Like Badovinac, Moodry scored a career-high with her 19 points as did senior Brenna Foley with her eight. 

“Eight from Brenna is a great job,” Murphy said. “We’ve got to get some more points out of some of the other kids. Our other sophomores, we’ve got to get more points out of them. Each day, they get a little bit better. We need more practice, something that’s not three-game practice.” 

The BC girls have had to prepare for three opponents a week much of the season due to so much rescheduling caused by weather and pandemic postponements. 

Corvallis’ only lead was very early. Tylin Sorensen sank two free throws and Olivia Lewis turned a steal into a layup as the Blue Devils took a 4-0 advantage. Butte Central’s Payton Hartwick traded a pair of made foul shots with Corvallis’ Alina Brown. Badovinac scored her first points of the game on a steal-for-bunny and Moodry followed with a three-point play for Maroons’ first lead, 9-8. 

The Blue Devils went ahead on a short jumper by Madeline Gilder on a pass from Sorensen. A Badovinac pullup gave BC a 9-8 edge. Corvallis’ last lead was 10-9 after Gilder, who wound up with 24 points for the game, connected. Moodry drove the hoop for an 11-10 Butte Central edge, Gilder tied the score with a charity toss and the Maroons went ahead for good on Badovinac’s first 3-pointer, which she followed with a steal-for-layin. The BC lead was 18-13 after a quarter. 

Gilder netted four 3-pointers in the game for Corvallis, three of which flirted with having been launched from a neighboring zip code. 

“Gilder shot the ball well,” Murphy said. “We gave her a lot of points.” 

Corvallis has won just once all year. 

Foley scored to start the second quarter, then the Blue Devils answered with five straight points from Gilder on a trey and a drive. Butte Central scored the next eight points, six by Badovinac and after two by Drew. The Blue Devils, though, cut their 28-18 deficit to 28-25 at halftime as Gilder sandwiched five points around a steal-and-layup by Lewis. 

“It was a slow-starting game and I thought I needed to do whatever I could to leave here with a win,” Badovinac said. “With Sofee out, we had a lot of our girls stepping up. Brenna Foley was driving to the hoop, tonight, which really helped.” 

The Maroons closed the third quarter on a 14-0 run to pull away from a thin 35-34 edge they had held over Corvallis 4 minutes, 49 seconds left in the period. Two steals-for-layup plays by Lewis, who had seven steals in the game, had pulled the Blue Devils so close. 

Foley’s long two-pointer after fielding a pass from Moodry ignited the spree. Badovinac hooped eight of the points before quarter’s end and BC owned a 49-34 advantage going into the last quarter. 

Free throw shooting iced the win. Butte Central was 7-for-8 on freebies in the last frame while going 16-for-19 on free throws for the game. Corvallis was even better, 12-for-13 from the foul line over the contest. 

Badovinac and Moodry combined to score 15 of the Maroons’ 18 points in the last quarter. 

Hartwick and Drew had two points each, and Kathryn Lalicker tallied one to back BC’s leading scoring by Badovinac, Moodry and Foley. Maycee Anderson, Tameli Bayarou and Renee Creekmore also saw time on the court. 

Lewis finished with 10 points to support Gilder’s 24 for the Blue Devils.  

Corvallis has a 2-11 season record, including a 1-5 conference mark. 

The BC girls, 7-1 in conference and 7-5 overall, will play at East Helena on Saturday. Tio-off for the Southwestern A Conference counter is scheduled for 4 p.m. 

CORVALLIS (1-13, 0-7) — Olivia Lewis 5-10 0-0 10, Alina Brown 0-1 2-2 2, Madeline Gilder 8-14 4-5 24, Tylin Sorensen 1-2 2-2 4, Brecklyn Jessop 1-2 0-0 2, Emelia Schairer 0-1 2-2 2, Tahnee Lewis 0-1 0-0 0, Ericka Jessop 0-2 0-0 0, Laurie Davidson 0-0 2-2 2. Totals 15-33 12-13 46.
BUTTE CENTRAL (7-6, 5-3) — Brenna Foley 3-8 2-2 8, Payton Hartwick 0-1 2-2 2, Brooke Badovinac 12-21 8-8 35, Ella Moodry 8-13 3-5 19, Mollie Drew 1-4 0-0 2, Kathryn Lalicker 0-3 1-2 1, Maycee Anderson 0-0 0-0 0, Tameli Bayarou 0-0 0-0 0, Renee Creekmore 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 24-50 16-19 67.
Corvallis                    13        12          9        12 — 46
Butte Central             18        10        21        18 — 67

3-point goals – Corvallis 4-8 (Gilder 4-6, B. Jessop 0-1, E. Jessop 0-1), Butte Central 3-5 (Hartwick 0-1, Badovinac 3-3, Lalicker 0-1). Fouled out – none. Total fouls – Corvallis 19, Butte Central 10. Technicals – none. Rebounds – Corvallis 22 (Sorensen 5), Butte Central 26 (Moodry 8, Badovinac 5). Blocks – Corvallis 1 (Davidson), Butte Central 1 (Badovinac). Assists – Corvallis 4 (Sorensen 2), Butte Central 12 (Foley 3, Badovinac 3, Lalicker 3). Steals – Corvallis 16 (O. Lewis 7), Butte Central 15 (Moodry 3, Badovinac 3, Foley 3, Hartwick 3). Turnovers – Corvallis 29, Butte Central 19.




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