Butte High boys’ season ends with loss to Bears

BILLINGS — The season came to an end for the Butte High boys’ basketball team Thursday night at Billings West.

The Golden Bears beat the Bulldogs 69-57 in an Eastern AA playoff game at the Golden Dome. The win, which was Billings West’s 18th straight over Butte High dating back to 2008, sends the Bears (18-3) to Butte for next week’s Class AA State tournament.

Butte High closes the season at 4-17.

University of Montana signee Jared Samuelson scored all 12 points in the first quarter to lead West. Samuelson, though, left the game with an injured lower back and did not return.

West lead 20-13 after the first quarter and 38-20 at halftime. The Bears led by as much as 19 points, but the Bulldogs wouldn’t go quietly. Tucker Thatcher hit back-to-back 3-pointers to help the Bulldogs pull as close as 61-55.

Senior Brian Smith closed his career with a 20-point effort for the Bulldogs. Dylan Cook scored 14 points. Thatcher scored six points for Butte, while Ryson Lovshin and Kilian O’Leary each tossed in five, Chanse Kremer scored three, and Brock Powell and Travis Williams scored two apiece.

Rocky Mountain College signee Dan Betcher and Bryson Deming each joined Samuelson with 12 points. Kameron Rauch scored 11.

Billings West is 101-7 in the Golden Dome over the past 11 seasons.

Brian Smith 20, Tucker Thatcher 6, Kilian O’Leary 5, Dallas Cook 14, Chanse Kremer 3, Brock Powell 2, Travis Williams 2, Ryson Lovshin 5.
Trever Spoja 7, Dan Betcher 12, Kameron Rauch 11, Mitch Brott 1, Jared Samuelson 12, Jayson Leinwand 4, Braydon Deming 7, Kevin Welliever 2, Reece Nielsen 3, Bryson Deming 12.
Butte High     13        7          23        14 — 57
Billings West             20        18        15        18 — 71
No other stats available.