Montabella dominates second half, tops CC-C

By Chip Burch • Last Updated 9:37 am on Tuesday, March 06, 2012

BLANCHARD — For one half, both Montabella and Carson City-Crystal were having a close boys basketball game.

Things changed in the second half and they changed for the Mustangs’ benefit.

Montabella doubled up the Eagles in the second half to win 53-34 in the first round of the Class C district tournament.

Both Montabella coach Cam Gattrell and CC-Crystal coach Ryan Fritz felt like the game was a tale of two halves.

“The first half we played stagnant,” Gattrell said. “The second half we gathered ourselves.”

“I think we defended a little bit better in the first half,” Fritz said. “We just competed well in the first half. If you hold a team to 19 points you have a shot to win”

In fact, it was 19-15 Mustangs at the half.

“We should have been up in the first half, but we missed five layups and had nine turnovers,” Fritz said.

Gattrell attributed some of the first-half problems on tournament jitters.

“I think it’s natural when you have six seniors and you’re one and done,” he said. “We’re on to round two and the nerves are gone.”

But things changed quickly.

“We got the ball down to Charlie (Helmer) and made some shots,” Gattrell said. “We created some turnovers and got some steals and got to the rim.”

Montabella created a lot of turnovers, and Fritz knew it.

“We had 27 turnovers,” he said.

Fritz couldn’t explain how his team scored only 17 points to 34 for the Mustangs in the last 16 minutes.

“I wish I knew,” he said. “It probably had a lot to do with Montabella’s execution. Their defense is built around forcing you to take one shot.”

His team contributed, too.

“We had some mental breakdowns,” Fritz said. “I was disappointed with our execution, especially defensively in the second half.”

Helmer finished with 14 points and Josh Dailey and Jemikal Papendick added 12 each for 38 of Montabella’s 53. Maxx Jolls and Isaac Torres each had 10 for the Eagles.

Montabella will face Beal City in the first game of Wednesday’s district semi-final. The winner will face the winner of St. Louis-Ithaca game on Friday.

MONTABELLA 53, CC-Crystal 34

CC-Crystal    6    9    8    9    —    34
Montabella    8    11    17    17    —    53

CC-CRYSTAL (10-11) — Schmitt 4 0-0 8, Schneider 0 1-2 1, Hugenot 0 0-2 0, Shockey 1 0-0 2, Rios 1 0-0 3, Jolls 4 2-2 10, Torres 4 0-0 10. Totals: 14 3-6 34. Three-point goals: Rios, Torres 2. Total fouls: 15. Fouled out: none.

MONTABELLA (15-6) — Eldred 1 0-0 2, Papendick 5 1-3 12, Braman 2 2-4 7, Dailey 5 0-1 12, Gilman 2 2-2 6, Helmer 6 2-4 14. Totals: 21 7-14 53. Three-point goals: Papendick, Braman, Dailey 2. Total fouls: 12. Fouled out: none.

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