When the Glacier Wolfpack and Flathead Bravettes last met for a crosstown basketball game, Glacier’s Ellie Keller sank six free throws late in the fourth quarter to seal the win.
Keller again had a big game in the second and last meeting of the crosstown schools, putting up a career-high 16 points in the Wolfpack’s decisive 44-30 victory at Flathead High School on Tuesday.
It was Glacier girls first sweep of a crosstown series since the 2015-16 season.
“Crosstown’s always exciting, the crowd’s great and the atmosphere’s great,” Glacier coach Bill Sullivan said.
Keller also made four of Glacier’s six charity shots.
“She’s certainly learning and figuring out that point guard role,” Sullivan said. “A great athlete making great decisions and certainly when she is doing that for us, we’re a pretty darn good team.”
In her first year playing varsity hoops, Sullivan has seen Keller, a sophomore, grow into her role and step up when needed.
“I just think the more experience she’s getting throughout the season is helping her and she’s kind of finding her groove and understanding the position, knowing what she has to do and certainly doing a fine job with it,” he said.
Keller wasn’t the only Glacier player to score in double digits. Kali Gulick tallied 14 points, including a second quarter trey.
“It’s always nice when she plays big,” Sullivan said of Gulick.
“We’ve got about three or four kids who can at any time score in double figures.”
The Wolfpack went on a 9-0 run in the first quarter and led the Bravettes 21-12 at the half. After the break, Glacier continued to build on that lead, never allowing Flathead to get much closer than six points.
“We got in a little offensive rhythm, did some things I didn’t think they had an answer for so all in all a very good job by our girls,” Sullivan said.
Flathead’s Taylor Henley led the Bravettes with 12 points and went 4 for 8 from the free-throw line. Jenna Johnson threw down nine points, all 3-pointers. Also in the 3-pointer club for Flathead was Maddie Walter, who scored six points, both treys.
The Bravettes fall to 5-8 overall and 1-6 in conference play and have lost six consecutive games to conference opponents.
Glacier (8-5, 4-3) is chasing Missoula Hellgate for the third seed in Western AA. On Feb. 2, Hellgate defeated Glacier convincingly, 60-39.
“We’re still battling,” Sullivan said. “We’re fighting for that third spot. We had a tough loss the other day against Hellgate, a good, good team, but we’re still gonna scrap and see where we could end up. After the first half of the conference, we’re comfortable with where we’re at and we just need to continue to get better.”
Flathead hosts Big Sky on Thursday at 7:15 p.m. Glacier visits Big Sky on Saturday with a 4:15 p.m tip-off.
Glacier 11 10 9 14 – 44
Flathead 8 4 10 8 – 30
GLACIER – Kali Gulick 14, Kaileigh Crawford 5, Aubrie Rademacher 1, Ellie Keller 16, Raley Shirey 8.
FLATHEAD – Maddie Walter 6, Kaysie Malmin 2, Jenna Johnson 9, Bridget Crowley 1, Taylor Henley 12.