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Eagles grab third-place state trophy

Mar 4, 2012 - By Randy Tucker, Staff Writer

CASPER -- The third time wasn't the charm for the St. Stephen's Eagles Friday night at Casper College.

Their Northwest 1-A nemesis, the Burlington Huskies, took their third straight game this season from the Eagles, winning 69-56 to advance to the state tournament championship game against the unbeaten Little Snake River Rattlers.

St. Stephen's faced another conference opponent Saturday in the third-place game. The Eagles split with Ten Sleep during the regular season but put together a solid fourth quarter to pull away from the Pioneers 56-43.

It was old home week for the Eagles against the Huskies late Friday night. Burlington is one of the most disciplined teams in all of Class 1-A ,and the Huskies ran their offense well, taking layups or close jump shots on most possessions. The Huskies hit just one 3-pointer during the game but were 18-29 from the free throw line.

St. Stephen's stayed close through the first half on the inside play of Lorenzo Roman and the dribble penetration of sophomore Lakota Oldman. The Eagles trailed 40-35 at the half.

The high -coring second period slowed precipitously in the third. St. Stephen's managed just six points, and the Huskies built their lead to 11.

The final period was even throughout with Burlington taking a brief 19-point lead before St. Stephen's scored the final six to close to the final 13-point margin.

St. Stephen's 56, Ten Sleep 43

Saturday afternoon's game showed the familiarity of the two opponents, with limited offense in the opening minutes. The two teams were able to anticipate each other well. Ten Sleep led by a pair after a very slow opening five minutes.

Oldman tied the game at eight on a blistering drive to the basket, and the Eagles quickly jumped to a 14-9 lead.

The Pioneers shot a passle of free throws in the second but couldn't convert most of them. The Eagles built their largest lead of the half at 20-11 on a pair of Oldman free throws, but Ten Sleep came to life on a 9-0 run in the last two minutes of the half to tie the game at 20. Logan Burningham and Friscoe Erdahl scored on drives, and Daniel Miller hit a 3-pointer to put the game back in contention.

Cole Littleshield hit a layup with nine seconds on the clock, but Erdahl was fouled at the buzzer and converted both charities. St. Stephen's held a one point lead at the break.

A very entertaining third quarter featured nine ties or lead changes, as neither team could build more than a two-point advantage. Oldman and Roman took care of most of the Eagles' scoring, but key baskets from Cole Littleshield and Andrew Bearing gave St. Stephen's the lead at 31-30 and tied it at 33.

Burningham tied the game a final time on a jump shot with seven seconds left in the third at 37.

Haphazard play in the final period was more to the /Eagles' liking Ten Sleep's.

Burningham couldn't find the range and missed his final nine shots in the game.

ST. STEPHEN'S 15 20 6 15 -- 56

BURLINGTON 17 23 12 17 -- 69

St. Stephen's -- Johnnie Whiteman 2 0-2 4, Cole Littleshield 2 4-6 8, Ruben Roman 1-2 1, Dustin Blackburn 1 0-0 2, Lakota Oldman 4 (2) 3-7 17, Andrew Bearing 1 3-4 5, Steven Monroe (1) 0-0 3, Lorenzo Roman 8 0-2 16. Totals 18 (3) 11-20 56

Burlington -- Ben Mancuso 1 0-0 2, Rian McIntosh 6 1-4 13, Daniel Davidson 10 (1) 9-10 32, Jess McNiven 1-2 1, Anson George 4 4-7 12, Trevor Wardell 1-2 1, Nicholas Carrizales 2 0-0 4, Preston Wardell 1 2-4 4. Totals 24 (1) 18-29 69

ST. STEPHEN'S 6 17 14 19 -- 56

TEN SLEEP 8 14 15 6 -- 43

St. Stephen's -- Johnnie Whiteman 2-2 2, Cole Littleshield 4 0-0 8, Lakota Oldman 7 (1) 2-3 19, Andrew Bearing 1 3-7 5, Brandon C'Hair 1 2-2 4, Dean Littleshield 1 0-0 2, Steven Monroe 1 0-0 2, Lorenzo Roman 7 0-2 14. Totals 22 (1) 9-16 56

Ten Sleep -- Daniel Miller (2) 0-0 6, Elias Huff 2 0-0 4, Dennis Lee 1-2 1, Friscoe Erdahl 4 11-18 19, Logan Burningham 5 3-4 13. Totals 11 (2) 15-24 43

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