Burgman tops Boyle in Alumni Classic

Burgman tops Boyle in Alumni Classic
Krystin Mengon Lee drives for Team Boyle as Hattie Thatcher defends for Team Burgman Wednesday night at the Butte Civic Center. Also pictured are Team Boyle members Tom Boyle, left, and Dan Boyle, and Team Burgman members Callie Daly, left, and Brianna Barsness. (Pat Ryan photo)

By Bruce Sayler

Shooters converted a little more accurately in the first half than they did in the second, but the their aims were all on target.

Butte launched a new fundraiser Wednesday night and responded to it well. The call went out for former Butte High and Butte Central athletes to relive their glory days to benefit a scholarship fund. Team Burgman topped Team Boyle 63-45 at the Butte Civic Center in the inaugural Burgman/Boyle Alumni Classic basketball game.

Proceeds went to the Burgman/Boyle Memorial fund, which was founded by the Burgman and Boyle families in honor of their sons, Kyle and Casey. The two young men were friends who died in a car wreck, the one-year anniversary of which was also marked on Wednesday.

Both of the young men played high school basketball for the Butte programs — Kyle Burgman at Butte High and Casey Boyle at Butte Central.

The call to honor them and the scholarship cause brought 40 players to the playing roster, almost all of them alumni of the two schools and all but a couple youngsters having been varsity letterwinners.

A crowd of about 1,200 spectators cheered for them.

“I thought it was successful,” Tom Boyle, one of the organizers, said. “It was a lot of fun, we had a pretty decent turnout and (preliminary counts) say we raised a lot of money,”

Tom Boyle is a 2001 Butte Central grad, who was a brother of Casey’s and who starred in basketball and football for the Maroons, then played football at Carroll.

Both rosters were dotted with members of the Boyle and Burgman families. The first basket was a 3-pointer by Kelsie Burgman and the last was a short jumper by her young nephew, Landon Vetter. Kyle was her brother.

Kyle’s sisters, Brianna Barsness and Erica Vetter also played, as did brother-in-law Kyle Barsness and another nephew, Carter Barsness.

Casey’s brothers, Dan, Tom and Matt, all played for the BC alums.

Many of the participants were classmates of the two and their high school coaches — John Thatcher (Team Burgman) and Brodie Kelly (Team Boyle) served in similar roles for the game.

“Whenever you get Butte High and Butte Central together, it’s going to be competitive,” Team Burgman player Casey Briggs, a former Bulldog and Montana Tech hoops standout, said. “This is a great idea. I didn’t know Casey (Boyle) very well, but I knew Kyle was in the gym, or at the KC (Knights of Columbus gym) all the time. This is something he would’ve wanted.”

Briggs, looking fit and strong, pulled down nine rebounds to go with nine points while helping lead his team’s win.

“I’m exhausted,” he disputed good-naturedly. “You must not have been watching the game.”

Erica Vetter shot the Burgmans to a 6-0 lead before Team Boule caught up with two Krystin Mengon Lee free throws and a pair of baskets by Matt Boyle. Billy Robinson coaxed home a runner to tie the score at 15, then the Boyles held a 17-15 edge at the end of the first quarter as Jake Stagnoli stole the ball and drove for a layup.

Team Boyle expanded the margin to 25-15 as Steven Ferriter canned two 3-pointers sandwiched around a Killian O’Leary bucket. Team Burgman answered with nine straight points, former Butte High interim coach Chad Jonart nailing two jumpers to cap the run built on Josh Allmendinger and Briggs free throws, and a Tony Trudnowski basket.

Trudnowski went on to lead the scoring with 10 points. Jonart finished nine.

Team Boyle led 29-26 at halftime.

The longer Team Burgman bench may have played a large part in determining the outcome in the second half. Team Boyle succumbed to a 12-point Team Burgman run to trail for good, then managed only three points in the fourth quarter as the Burgmans pulled away.

The third-quarter Burgman run was keyed by Briggs’ inside play, good for six points in the spree. Allmendinger, Mitch Hawbaker and Tucker Thatcher also scored in the run.

The third quarter ended with Team Burgman ahead by 46-42. Team Boyle then went completely dry on points the last 5 ½ minutes of the game as Team Burgman rattled off the last nine of the contest.

“We started shooting too many 3s in the second half and they fed us too much Casey Briggs,” Tom Boyle said. “But it was fun to feel like we were back in high school for a little bit.”

Kelsie Burgman finished with six points to back Trudnowski, Jonart and Briggs in the Team Burgman scoring totals. Todd Hildreth and Matt Esquibel each had five points, Allmendinger and Mitch Hawbaker four apiece, Noah Thatcher three, and Jake Larson, Ryan Pollock, Tucker Thatcher and Landon Vetter notched two each.

The team also received contributions from Erica Vetter, Brianna Barsness, Kyle Barsness, Savannah Clary, Shane Clary, Callie Daly, Mack Hawbaker, Cole Salo, Baylee Thatcher, Hattie Thatcher and Carter Barsness.

Matt Boyle and Ferriter each netted nine points to pace Team Boyle. Stagnoli scored seven points, Tom Boyle four, Alex Murphy and Stephan Burns three each, Killian O’Leary, Mengon Lee, Scott Mansanti and Robinson each caged two, Dan Boyle and Kelly tallied a point each while Sean O’Leary, Jodi Hogart, J.T. McIntyre and Lindsay Vainio also played.

Tom Boyle said he thought the contest provided a good launch for next year. The fund has grown such that scholarships were awarded at halftime of Wednesday’s game. The scholarships were of $1,000 to $1,500 and presented to Butte Central grads Aidan Dennehy, Kyle Harrington and Kyle Schulte, and Butte High grads Tucker Thatcher and Nolan Boyle. Harrington and Schulte were not present due to being at their college football preseason practices for Carroll and Montana Western, respectively. Their parents represented them at the game.

The renowned Dynamic Dance academy of Butte presented a stunning, well-performed routine at halftime. The game was officiated by Ed Heard Jr., John Lappin and John O’Brien. Tom O’Neill served as P.A. announcer while Patsy Burgman and Michelle Shea kept the scorebook and time.

The Special Olympics Butte Bulldogs team played a game before the main contest and the program was also given a donation from the Burgman/Boyle fund.


TEAM BOYLE — Dan Boyle 0-0 1-2 1, Tom Boyle 1-5 2-4 4, Matt Boyle 3-3 2-3 9, Brodie Kelly 0-0 1-2 1, Sean O’Leary 0-0 0-0 0, Killian O’Leary 1-2 0-0 2, Krystin Mengon Lee 0-5 2-2 2, Jodi Hogart 0-1 0-0 0, Alex Murphy 1-4 0-0 3, J.T. McIntyre 0-5 0-0 0, Jake Stagnoli 3-3 0-0 7, Stephan Burns 1-2 0-0 3, Lindsay Vainio 0-3 0-0 0, Scott Mansanti 1-3 0-0 2, Billy Robinson 1-2 0-0 2, Steven Ferriter 3-5 0-0 9. Totals 15-43 8-13 45.

TEAM BURGMAN — Kelsie Burgman 2-2 0-0 6, Erica Vetter 0-0 0-0 0, Brianna Barsness 0-1 0-0 0, Kyle Barsness 0-0 0-1 0, Josh Allmendinger 1-2 2-2 4, Casey Briggs 3-3 3-9 9, Savannah Clary 0-0 0-0 0, Shane Clary 0-3 0-0 0, Callie Daly 0-2 0-0 0, Matt Esquibel 1-1 2-2 5, Mack Hawbaker 0-1 0-0 0, Mitch Hawbaker 2-9 0-0 4, Todd Hildreth 2-5 0-0 5, Chad Jonart 4-6 0-0 9, Jake Larson 1-4 0-0 2, Ryan Pollock 1-2 0-0 2, Cole Salo 0-0 0-0 0, Baylee Thatcher 0-2 0-0 0, Hattie Thatcher 0-0 0-0 0, Noah Thatcher 1-2 0-0 3, Tucker Thatcher 0-4 2-2 2, Tony Trudnowski 4-5 0-0 10, Landon Vetter 1-1 0-0 2, Carter Barsness 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 23-55 9-16 63.

Team Boyle 17 12 13 3 — 45

Team Burgman 15 11 20 17 — 63

3-point goals — Team Boyle 7-23 (T. Boyle 0-1, M. Boyle 1-1, Mengon Lee 0-4, Murphy 1-4, McIntyre 0-2, Stagnoli 1-2, Burns 1-2, Vainio 0-3, Ferriter 3-4), Team Burgman 8-21 (K. Burgman 2-2, Esquibel 1-1, Mitch Hawbaker 0-1, Hildreth 1-2, Jonart 1-3, Larson 0-1, Pollock 0-1, B. Thatcher 0-1, N. Thatcher 1-2, T. Thatcher 0-3, Trudnowski 2-4). Fouled out — none. Total fouls — Team Boyle 11, Team Burgman 10. Technicals — none. Rebounds — Team Boyle 32 (Murphy 5), Team Burgman 41 (Briggs 9, Esquibel 5). Blocks — Team Boyle 1 (T. Boyle), Team Burgman 0. Assists — Team Boyle 4 (Stagnoli 3), Team Burgman 6 (Jonart 2, T. Thatcher 2). Steals — Team Boyle 4 (Stagnoli 1, M. Boyle 1, K. O’Leary 1, Murphy 1), Team Burgman 6 (B. Thatcher 1, Jonart 1, Shane Clary 1, N. Thatcher 1, Salo 1, Trudnowski 1). Turnovers — Team Boyle 12, Team Burgman 6.


Matt Boyle drives for Team Boyle as Team Burgman’s Noah Thatcher defends. Dan Boyle looks on. (Pat Ryan photo)

Matt Boyle drives for Team Boyle as Team Burgman’s Noah Thatcher defends. Dan Boyle looks on. (Pat Ryan photo)

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