Wolves secure regular season 5B District championship
February 9, 2022
Two nights after their first conference loss of the season 65-63 Thursday at rival Manhattan, the Three Forks High School boys basketball team bounced back emphatically with a 69-32 home win over Townsend. The Wolves secured a 5B District regular-season championship with the win, finishing with a 9-1 record.
"This was the proudest I have been of this group of young men all year. We had a tough loss to our rival school in a game that we had plenty of chances to win. It just didn't go our way. We didn't make enough plays down the stretch," said Hauser. "Owen (Long) had been so sick we didn't know if we would have him that night, and I told him that his teammates had his back and would come out with a 'W' and reach our first goal of the season, winning a conference championship. I was right, and they played the best defensive game we have had all year and offensively played fearless attacking the rim and shooting with confidence."
Finnley Tesoro led the team against Townsend with a game-high 18 points. Mikey O'Dell and Jacob Buchignani finished with 11, Shane Williams had ten, Long had six, and Collin Stone finished with four. Dylan Swenson and Caleb VanVleet each had three.
After taking an 11-7 lead at the end of the first quarter against Manhattan, Three Forks was outscored 24-16 in the second quarter and trailed 31-27 at the break.
Austin Allen led the team with 16, Tesoro had 15, Williams finished with 12, Long and O'Dell had nine, and Buchignani finished with four points.
Three Forks will wrap up the regular season with a Friday night game at East Helena and a Saturday home senior night matchup against Columbus.
The seniors honored before the game will be Allen, Buchignani, Long, O'Dell, Rylan Koch, Walker Page, Tesoro, and Stone.
"We are a family, so Saturday night could be an emotional last home game. What an advantage that has been all year. We have the best home crowd maybe in all of Class B. What a community to be a part of," said Hauser. "These kids mean the world to me. I can't believe it's already the last weekend of the regular season. I am going to enjoy these last moments we have together. It's gone way too fast."