Broncos earn season split with Panthers
BLACKFOOT — A week ago in Thomas the Snake River and Blackfoot boys basketball teams battled for the full 32 minutes, but it was the Panthers that were able to overcome a 10-point fourth quarter deficit to walk away with the win.
Friday night the two teams met for the second and final time this season in Blackfoot and for two and aha half quarters the game was again a battle.
But this time the Broncos found some late life finishing the third quarter on a 10-0 run and carrying the momentum into the fourth quarter as they took down the Panthers 51-43.
Snake River trailed 20-19 heading into halftime. When they came out for third quarter the Panthers came out ready to get the lead back.
The Panthers started the quarter on a 6-0 run to take a 25-20 lead.
With 4:22 left in the quarter all the momentum began to shift towards the home team.
McKye Watt hit a free throw to cut the Broncos deficit to four, a minute and a half later Kaden Loveland took over.
Loveland scored seven of the 11 Broncos points during the run including a three pointer that was followed by one from Watt giving the Broncos a 31-25 lead heading into the final eight minutes.
"In the final minute of the quarter I told the guys that we were going to take one shot and one shot only, but we were not able to get off that final shot, the good thing was they were not able to either," Blackfoot head coach Dan Hale said. "They had a chance to cut the lead to to or three instead we went into the fourth quarter up six."
Watt continued his hot shooting as he continued the Bronco run into the fourth quarter.
"I told McKye to just relax because he is a really good shooter and keeps the same shot every time, and I knew once we got one to fall two or three more would come," Hale said.
But the spark plug for the Broncos the entire game was the play of Kaden Loveland.
Loveland scored a game-high 20 points, 14 of those came in the second half. While the baskets were enough to ignite the Blackfoot crowd, it was his hustle plays that did not show up in the scoresheet were his hustle plays.
Numerous times throughout the night Loveland dove for loose balls, fight to tie up the Panthers players and just put himself in the right place at the right time.
"Kaden Lovleand was unbelievable," Hale said. "He was all over the floor, he made bucket after bucket he just hustle, hustle, hustled."
It was not all bad on the night for Snake River. Curtis Keller and Kade Keller each put in a team-high 17 points.
Blackfoot (2-4) hosts Pocatello tonight while Snake River (3-1) host Soda Springs at 7:30 p.m.
Blackfoot 51, Snake River 43
Snake River 12 7 6 18 — 43
Blackfoot 13 7 11 20 — 51
Snake River — Curtis Keller 6 5-7 17, Klay Keller 1 0-0 2, Kade Keller 6 4-5 17, Tyler Coombs 2 1-2 5, Jaden Poulter 1 0-0 2. Blackfoot — Tanner Norton 4 1-2 9, Aaron Vail 2 1-3 5, Kaden Loveland 9 1-5 2-, McKye Watt 3 2-5 10, Damon Bodkin 0 3-4 3, Harry Hoskins 0 2-4 2.