By John Robbins
Butte Bulldogs 38 Hellgate Knights 57
The Bulldogs came back down to earth tonight after a stellar past weekend at home winning two conference games in a row. Cameron Gurnsey was held scoreless, and the scoreboard showed it at the end of the game.
The Bulldogs came out a little flat footed to begin the contest, as Hellgate jumped out to an early 7-0 lead until Hudson Luedtke grabbed a rebound off the Casey Merrifield miss for a putback to get Butte on the board with their first 2.
Casey Merrifield does what shooters do and that’s shoot, he knocked down a big 3 ball to make it 7-5 Hellgate, off the Hellgate turnover Luedtke hits the spin cycle down low and laid it in for 2 and would get it right back again for a coast-to-coast drive to the rack to give the dogs the lead 9-7.
Hellgate would hit a triple to go up 12-9 which led to a timeout by Butte High. Hellgate would go on a run to push their lead to 18-9, Kale McDonald would hit a 3 in the corner at the buzzer and Hellgate would lead 18-12 after one.
The 2nd quarter opened slow for both teams but more so for the Bulldogs as they let the Knights build a 10-point lead 22-12 with 4:30 remaining in the first half. The Knights would use a 7-0 run to lead by 13 with 2:35 left in the first half, Jace Stenson would come down on the Dogs Next possession to knock down a deuce 25-14 Knights.
Cayde Stajcar would knock down a pair of free throws to make it 25-16 with a minute left. The Knights would lead 27-18 at half.
Hellgate would open up the second half with a 33-22 lead with 5 minutes in the 3rd period. Tocher Lee would get a dish in the key for a floater for 2 and make it 35 -24 Knights
Hellgate would march right back down the floor and cash a three in leading to a timeout.
After that the Knights let the flood gates open and mounted their led to 20 points with 1:10 left, Tocher lead would add to the other three free throws Luedtke made by making three of his own for 6 Bulldog points at the foul line in the 3rd and scoring 12 total points for the period as a team, but it wasn’t enough to put a dent in the lead as the Knights led 51-30 after 3 quarters.
Hellgate went on runs and out rebounded the Bulldogs for a good majority of the night, especially on the offensive glass. That would continue and hold to be true 4 minutes into the final frame of the game as Hellgate just outwilled the Bulldogs on second chances tonight.
With 4:30 left a timeout was taken for the Bulldogs, they would come out of that timeout and turn the ball over. It was just that kind of night for the Bulldogs all though they would make a late little surge off some good defense and aggressive offensive plays to make it 55-38 with a 1:48 left.
Subs would come in and the Knights would cruise to win in convincing fashion 57-38, ending the Dogs win streak at 2.
Hudson Luedtke led the way for the Bulldogs tonight with 15 points, Kale McDonald and Tocher Lee each had 5, Jonas Sherman had 4, Casey Merrifield had 3, and Jace Stenson and Cayde Stajcar each had 2.
Senior Connor Dick led the Knights with 16 points.
The Bulldogs will head to Missoula Big Sky January 13 @ 5 PM