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By Jack H. Smith
Three Forks Voice 

Three Forks upends Lodge Grass, play Huntley Project Friday


February 27, 2019

Melissa Jenkins/Three Forks Voice

Zach Pitcher had a huge night for the Wolves.

Trailing 10-9 at the end of the first quarter Thursday night against Lodge Grass in the opening round of the Southern B Divisional Tournament, the Three Forks High School boys basketball team would face adversity when senior standout Payden Lynn went down with an ankle injury mere seconds into the second quarter. Needing a spark from the bench, juniors Micaiah Hauser and Zach Pitcher stepped up huge combining for 23 points in the final three quarters to help lead the Wolves to a thrilling 63-57 win over the high-powered Indians.

"We battled and guys stepped up. Zach (Pitcher) had 12, he stepped up huge. That is what good teams do. You have a guy go down and your bench steps up and plays well. That is what happened tonight. The guys stepped up and I am super proud of them," said head coach Terry Hauser.

Senior Colter Miller led the team with a game high 17 points, Hauser added 13, Pitcher finished with 12, and Dustin Dalke added 10 points. Bryce Olson finished with five, Corey Yecny had four and Lynn added two points.

Three Forks advances to the semifinals where they will play Huntley Project who upended Boulder 64-48 Thursday evening. The Friday game is set for 8 p.m. at the Metra Park Arena in Billings.

While the Wolves defeated the Red Devils 68-50 in the first game of the team, Hauser said Huntley Project is a way better team then at that point and they cannot take them lights.

"It's tournament time. You never know what is going to happen," he said.

The first quarter was a feeling out process between the two high-powered teams. No team would have bigger than a four-point lead with the Indians taking a 10-9 advantage into the second.

Melissa Jenkins/Three Forks Voice

Micaiah Hauser had 13 points in the 63-57 win over Lodge Grass.

Lodge Grass would score the first five points of the quarter before the Wolves came to life behind the hot shooting of Hauser and Pitcher. Hauser would score 11 in the quarter including three three-pointers. Coach Hauser said that is the most confidence he had seen Micaiah play with since he came back to the lineup a couple weeks ago and it was really big for the team. 17-2 run from the Wolves would push the lead to 26-17 and they would take a 35-24 lead into halftime.

Miller and Dalke had eight points each in the half and Pitcher added five including a deep three pointer.

Three Forks would take as big as a 12-point lead in the second half before a furious Lodge Grass rally to tie the game at 48. Miller would step up huge in the final minutes and his layup and subsequent free throw pushed the lead to 52-48. The Indians would cut the lead to 55-54 before a Hauser layup and Yecny basket pushed the lead to 59-54.


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