Frontier Basketball Scores & Highlights, Thursday 2/4 - News, Sports and Weather

Frontier Basketball Scores & Highlights, Thursday 2/4

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Havre Native Scores Career High for UGF in loss

At the start of the fourth quarter, the (23) Lady Argos trailed (12) Lewis-Clark State College by 14 points. On the game’s final possession, UGF had a chance to send the game into overtime with a buzzer-beating three. That three was blocked, however, and the Lady Argos lost to the Warriors 66-63.

The comeback was spurred by a string of defensive stops, a big three from junior Nneka Nnadi, and the surprising scoring output of reserve guard Molly Herron. Herron, a sophomore, scored a career high of 10 points after totally just eight in her last eight games. Seven of those points came in the second half and four came in the final ten minutes.

“Molly has been really important for us off the bench all year. She plays great defense and rarely makes mistakes,” head coach Bill Himmelberg said. “Tonight she played hard like she always does, and this time she was able to score for us too. We really needed her tonight.

Thanks in part to Herron’s play, Himmelberg’s squad battled back to narrow the gap to just three with under a minute left. After both teams scored on their next possessions, UGF held the ball six seconds left. The ball was pushed doesn the court quickly to Morgan Grier, who shot the ball in time just behind the 3-point line but it was swatted away as the clock hit zero.

“We shouldn’t have fallen into a hole like that, but I was proud of the way our girls fought back,” Himmelberg said. “In the end we just didn’t have enough energy to finish.”

UGF fell into that hole, which was a big as 20 points in the third quarter, primarily due to poor shooting in the first half. The Lady Argos made just 34 percent of their shots in the first two quarters, while LCSC made an even half of their attempts.

Nnadi, the Frontier Conference’s leading scorer, was the team’s main source of points in the first half, scoring 10. A three from Nnadi with four minutes left in the game is what ultimately turned a late game run into a legitimate comeback attempt.

She finished as the team’s leading scorer in the game with 17 points and was closely followed by senior guard Erin Legel who scored 10 of her 16 in the second half. Nnadi and Herron tied for a team high of four assists, while Legel and McDonagh each had eight rebounds.

The loss brings the team’s record to 15-8 (6-5) but keeps the Lady Argos tied for third place in the Frontier Conference standings. The game also ends a run of three straight games against a ranked opponent for UGF. Their next game will be at unranked Montana Western on Saturday, Feb. 6 at 6:30 p.m. 

Makkar Scores Career High in Loss

Junior forward John Makker had his best game of the 2015-16 season, scoring a career high of 21 points in the Argo’s 92-69 road loss to (5) Lewis-Clark State College. UGF was outscored 42-24 in the first half and could not overcome the deficit despite a much better second half.

After managing just 24 points in the first 20 minutes, 12 of which were scored by Makkar, the Argo offense finally awoke and scored 45 in the final period. During those last 20 minutes, UGF got hot from long distance, hitting six of 11 3-point attempts. Unfortunately for the Argos, the Warriors matched that with six of their own and managed to stay ahead of UGF throughout.

The Argos had one of their best days in conference play in terms of sharing the ball. With their high scoring second half, the Argos totaled 16 assists for their second positive assist-to-turnover ratio in Frontier Conference play.  

Makkar was a force throughout the game and was the only Argo to score over 20. Not only did he lead the team in scoring, but he did so almost as efficiently as possible, making nine of ten shots.

While Makar was excellent in both halves, junior Issac Howard had to wait till the second half to find his stroke. Once he did, he five of six 3-point attempts to finish with 17 points. The other double-digit scorer for UGF was senior guard Darren Locket who scored nine of his 13 in the second half.

The Argos sit at 10-10 (3-8) on the season but still sit within the cut for making the Frontier playoffs. They now get a stretch of four unranked teams, all on the road, before returning home to play (13) Carroll College. The first of those unranked teams will be Montana Tech, who they play in Butte, Mont., on Saturday, Feb. 6 at 8:30 p.m.

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