Lone Peak High junior Nick Brester takes a shot. This mid-January home game against regional rivals the West Yellowstone Wolverines was a win for Lone Peak – 52-44. Lone Peak High junior Emma Flach heads down the court. The Big Horn girls weren’t able to pull off a win during this Feb. 1 home game against Manhattan Christian, falling 28-57.

A fight 'til the bitter end

Big Sky Big Horn basketball season comes to a close

In the great microcosm of life – sports – Lone Peak Big Horn varsity boys and girls basketball players learned the attributes they were meant to learn: hard work; resilience; determination. 

Their record is not perfect, but the lessons learned should make them better adults. 

“My girls and I were just talking about how they didn’t have a great season, but they learned from that – how to work with people, how to lose; how to overcome,” said Pam Flach, mother to players Emma, a junior, and Libby, a freshman.

With fiercely-fought celebrations of success as well as the bitter sting of character-building defeat, they struggled – sometimes surfacing victorious and other times succumbing to their competitors. Still, they never gave up. 

Lady Big Horns won six of twelve games in the regular season. They were ranked fifth in District 11C and came out fourth after the tournament after Brooke Botha, Solae Swenson, Emma Flach, Ivy Hicks and Sara Wilson led the charge with scoring. 

Big Horn boys won five of 13 games and lost their first post-season matchup against Shields Valley, which took them to the consolation bracket. Cole March had a strong showing in that game when he nailed five three-point shots.

Despite strong offensive work by Cole March, Kolya Bough, Frankie Starz, Kegan Babick, Nick Brester and Nolan Schumacher in the next game against West Yellowstone, the Big Horns lost and were eliminated from the tournament. 

"We were really impressed with how our seniors came out and played in their final tournament. It sparked some intensity for our younger players and even though this season wasn't what we hoped, we played with lots of heart and never quit,” Big Sky School District Athletic Director John Hannahs said. “We are ready to put in some serious work in the off season and come back next year with a hungry group of guys."

Big Horn varsity girls head coach Ausha Cole said her team struggled with injuries and finding their groove this year, but she is proud of them and feels the team is nicely poised for success next year. 

“I think we finished the post season on a very strong note. One of our players made a comment after the Shields Valley game that ‘They (Shields Valley players) looked defeated even though they won the game.’ There was so much about that statement that was true,” Coach Cole said. “Our girls held that team to 27 points! Sara Wilson played the best defensive game that I've ever seen out of a high school player – boy or girl.”

In some cases, the struggle is what makes the person – and the team. 

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