MILES CITY - One year removed from falling short, the Glendive Red Devils got their spot in the state title game, with a 48-37 win Friday night over fifth-ranked Sidney in the semifinals of the state Class A girls' basketball tournament.
Glendive senior Alisa Lordemann scored 16 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to help the unranked Red Devils, 17-6, into their 10th state title game. They'll face top-ranked and unbeaten Miles City, on the Cowgirls'home floor, Saturday at 8 p.m. Miles City beat No. 4 Dillon 53-38 to make the championship. Glendive has won three titles, the last time in 1983.
Also helping Glendive was some stellar defense - a mixture of man-to-man (implemented after made shots) and 2-3 zone (after misses) that limited Sidney to 33 percent shooting.
So when the Red Devils went 9-for-11 from the floor in the second quarter, outscoring the Eagles 19-4 for a 29-13 halftime lead, it goes without saying that they were playing mainly man-to-man.
"We're very good defensively," said coach Richy Powell, who guided his Red Devils to their third win over Sidney in four games this season. "That's why we're here.
"Offensively we're pretty good too, but we're a little inconsistent. Although that first half tonight, we were very, very good."
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Lordemann scored eight of her points during that second period, including fancy back-to-back drives to put her team up 24-13 with 2:30 left in the half. At the 1:00 mark, Lordemann m issed a 3-pointer, but Kelsey Mast was there for the rebound. Mast eventually got the ball back, and drained her own 3-pointer for a 27-13 lead.
Lordemann closed the half with a low-post basket, giving Glendive all the momentum it needed. "It was a fun team to watch there for a while," Powell said. "This is a good bunch."
Things only got worse for the Eagles (18-6). They came out in the third quarter and didn't score for over six minutes, falling behind 35-13 before Ashley Sullivan hit two free throws. Sullivan, Sidney's best shooter, went 2-for-11 from the floor against Mast and Co. "Kelsey Mast did a spectacular job on her," said Lordemann, who was 8-for-12 from the field.
Glendive's entire team did the job. Sidney sophomore Amanda Norby scored 14 points, but the Eagles' other three 10th-graders - Brittny Kallevig, Keri Peterson and Danielle Hagen - went 5-for-19 from the field.
"I just don't think we were aggressive offensively," Sidney coach Deb Prevost said. "But a big key was in the second quarter, when Lordemann took over. She had that little spurt there. That got us in a hole, and we didn't recover."
Glendive lost in the semifinals to eventual champion Colstrip at last year's state tournament, with basically this same group. "It was maybe part of the maturing process," Powell said. " I think we deserved to be in the title game. Now we're there, and it's anybody's game, the way I look at it."
Lordemann, for one, was hoping for a rematch with Miles City, a team the Red Devils pushed in two of three meetings. "Oh, yes," the senior standout said of playing their Eastern A neighbor, 70 miles to the west. " Ever since we were young, this has been our goal - to play Miles City for the state title. Since we were probably sixth graders. All these years."
Glendive has been state runner-up twice since 1983 - in 1985 and 1987.
Miles City 53, Dillon 38: It's far from a "wrap," but the top-ranked Miles City Cowgirls cleared a huge hurdle on the road to winning a the state title, beating No. 4 Dillon.
It wasn't huge because the unbeaten Cowgirls (22-0) are a lock to beat unranked Glendive (17-6). Far from it. But it was at this point last year that the then-unbeaten Cowgirls stumbled, losing to Lewistown in the semifinals.
Now they're on the verge of a fourth state crown, to go with titles won in 1998 and 1988-89.
"We thought about that all year," said reserve forward Julia Austill, a senior who contributed to Miles City' s strong defensive effort with two steals. "This was our goal: to get past this game.
"And it's not over. We have tomorrow to worry about, still."
Miles City got to Saturday on the 1-2 offensive punch of Ashley Griffith, who had 22 points, and Kayla Frize, who scored 17; and with a defense that was stellar in the half-court.
Dillon, using an effective full-court press, trailed 22-20 at halftime - in part because Miles City reserve Erin Grunhuvd hit three big 15-footers. But then the Lady Beavers scored just six points in the third quarter, and fell behind 44-26 a minute into the fourth on a steal and layup by Frize.
GLENDIVE - Alisa Lordemann 8-12 0-0 16, Holly Anderson 1-2 1-3 3, Sheyenne Roesler 2-5 2-2 6, Alison Ziegler 4-7 0-0 8, Kelsey Mast 3-5 2-3 9, Breann McClellan 3-7 0-0 6, Brittany Milne 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 21-38 5-8 48.
SIDNEY - Brittny Kallevig 2-5 0-0 5, Amanda Norby 7-10 0-0 14, Danielle Hagen 2-7 3-6 7, Ashley Sullivan 2-11 2-2 7, Heather Smith 1-5 0-0 2, Keri Peterson 1-7 0-0 2, Allison Peterson 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 15-45 5-8 37.
3-point goals - Glendive 1-3 (Mast 1-1), Sidney 2-12 (Sullivan 1-7, Kallevig 1-3). Total fouls - Glendive 13, Sidney 14. Fouled out - none. Rebounds - Glendive 30 (Lordemann 10, Anderson 7), Sidney 21 (Norby 7).
MILES CITY - Liz Weimer 2-5 0-0 5, Ashley Griffith 7-11 7-8 22, Amanda Christiaens 0-1 0-0 0, Donna Mae Stanley 1-2 0-0 3, Kayla Frize 6-14 4-6 17, Julia Austill 0-1 0-0 0, Erin Grunhuvd 3-6 0-0 6, Megan Bundy 0-1 0-0 0, V icki Strobel 0-0 0-1 0, Tiffany Stevenson 0-0 0-1 0. Totals 19-41 11-15 53.
DILLON - Lindsey Scott 5-11 0-0 13, Nicole Bradley 5-8 6-7 16, Quinn Godecke 0-2 2-2 2, Katie Blades 0-3 0-0 0, Lynsey Monaco 3-8 0-2 6, Kim Konen 0-1 0-0 0, Jessica Jones 0-0 1-4 1, Amanda Turney 0-0 0-0 0, Kacee Tash 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 13-33 9-14 38.
3-point goals - MC 4-12 (Griffith 1-2, Stanley 1-2, Weimer 1-4, Frize 1-4), Dillon 3-9 (Scott 3-5). Rebounds - MC 24 (Frize 6), Dillon 24 (Jones 6).
At Miles City
Glendive 56, Whitefish 35
Sidney 54, Lewistown 49
Miles City 46, Hamilton 36
Dillon 59, Polson 50
Lewistown 70, Whitefish 61, loser out
Polson 49, Hamilton 42, loser out
Glendive 48, Sidney 37, semifinal
Miles City 53, Dillon 48, semifinal
9:30 a.m. - Polson (16-7) vs. Sidney (18-6), loser out
11 a.m. - Lewistown (20-3) vs. Dillon (19-5), loser out
6:30 p.m. - morning winners, consolation
8 p.m. - Glendive (17-6) vs. Miles City (22-0), championship