Helena Capital’s McKenzie Johnston distributes the ball, whether it’s to the hot hand in basketball or over the fence in softball.
On Monday she picked basketball, accepting a scholarship offer from University of Montana women’s basketball coach Robin Selvig.
Johnston, who will be a senior this coming school year at Capital, will join the Lady Griz in 2015-16.
Johnston told the Helena Independent Record she’d narrowed her choices to UM or Carroll College, where her sister Jordan plays.
“I just always liked the Griz, and loved watdching them play. I think Robin’s a great coach.,” Johnston told the Missoulian Wednesday. “He offered me after a couple AAU tournaments this past couple weeks (in Portand and Seattle).”
Johnston is a straight-A student interested in physical therapy, so UM was an excellent fit. The 5-foot-7 guard also holds the single-season record for home runs for Capital’s softball team, with 10, and her 14 career homers is also a school record.
So there was a chance at softball too. Montana is adding the sport this fall.
“At first I was kind of thinking about it,” said Johnston, who is also a volleyball standout. “But then I realized I just wanted to see what I could do just focusing on one sport.”
Capital, which sent senior starting forward Maggie Rickman to the Lady Griz, has gone 42-7 the last two seasons with Johnston running the point. She lettered as a freshman as well.
In 2013 the Bruins set a school record of 21 wins and finished second at state. This past season the Bruins again won 21 games before finishing fourth at the State AA tournament.
Johnston ranked sixth in the state in steals with 55, and was second on the Bruins in scoring (10.5 points per game) and rebounding (5.2).
“I think she’s going to have a great future there,” said Capital coach Bill Pilgeram, who’ll be coaching Johnston for one more season. “It’s where she wanted to go, I know. I think she’ll be a great fit.”