Bulldogs go 1-2 in state tournaments, place third
For the first time since 2007, the Hardin Bulldogs played in the Class A Boys Basketball State tournaments at the Adams Center in Missoula. The Bulldogs took a win over Butte Central, and lost games to Dillon and Polson.
Miles City finished as the Class A state champions followed by – in order of rank – Dillon, Hardin, Billings Central, Laurel and Anaconda.
The Bulldogs’ sole win last Thursday began with a 15-11 deficit behind Butte Central.
In the second quarter, they stepped up and took the lead scoring 16 points to Butte’s 4, going into halftime with an 8-point Bulldog lead: 27-19.
The third quarter brought the Bulldogs an additional 15 points, 1 less than Butte’s 16, taking the score to 42-35 with the Bulldogs still in the lead.
In the final quarter, the Bulldogs once again outscored Butte Central, this time by 8 points, 15-7, finishing the competition with a 57-42 Hardin victory.
Point leaders for Hardin were Darnell LeftHand and Larry McCormick. LeftHand finished with 20 points, 15 rebounds and three assists. McCormick followed with 18 points, two rebounds and one assist.
Friday’s game versus Dillon finished with 4-point Bulldog deficit.
The first quarter started Dillon off with a 10-point lead over the Bulldogs at 23-13.
In the second quarter, the Bulldogs outscored Dillon by 5 points – 14-9 – taking the halftime score to 32-27 in favor of Dillon.
In the third quarter, the Bulldogs once again outscored Dillon by 5 points, this time 17-12, taking the score into a tie at 44-44.
The final quarter brought the Bulldogs 17 points, 4 points less than Dillon’s 21. Hardin’s opponents won 65-61
Point leaders for Hardin were LeftHand, Virgil McCormick and Clarence Little Wolf. Left Hand finished with 24 points and 20 rebounds. McCormick followed with 12 points and four assists, and Little Wolf contributed 10 points and five assists.
The Bulldogs’ final state game against Polson Saturday ended with their loss by 8 points.
In the first quarter, Hardin outscored Polson by 2 points – 10-8 – starting the game with a small lead.
In the second quarter, Polson exchanged the lead with Hardin, outscoring the Bulldogs 11-3 and taking the halftime score to 19-13 in their favor.
In the third quarter, scores-per-quarter were comparably high with Polson scoring an extra 21 points, 8 points more than Hardin’s 13, taking the score to 40-26 in their favor.
In the final quarter, and high-scoring quarter, the Bulldogs outshot Polson by 6 points, 30-24. Still unable to regain the lead, Hardin was left behind by 8 points, finishing the competition with a score of 64-56.
Point leaders for Hardin were Larry McCormick, Clarence Little Wolf and Beau Venne.
McCormick finished with 14 points and one assist. Littlewolf and Venne followed, each with 11 points.