Two of our own play hoops with an angel

For true Copperhead fans, the Lady Griz ARE Ali Hurley and Torry Hill. They are an extension of the Blue and Silver and our link to something bigger and better in Anaconda.

In the world of sports, WE is often used incorrectly in support of one’s favorite team. But in this case – in the case of these two Copperheads – calling the Lady Griz WE is absolutely and undeniably accurate.

Add one more to our list.

You see, Hurley and Hill get the opportunity to play basketball with an angel. That angel is Alyssa Smith.

Joel Carlson of the University of Montana Sports Information Department wrote an article that will bring you to tears describing how one young lady turned her tragedy into being a becon of hope for hundreds of young children at Camp Eyabsut located in her home state of Washington.

Here’s the link to the story:

On Saturday, Feb. 2, the Lady Griz will be doing a fundraiser for Camp Eyabsut at the Eastern Washington/Montana Big Sky women’s basketball game. I know the Fifth-Annual Pintler Plunge is happening that day here in Anaconda, but there’s no reason you can’t plunge and hit the road to Missoula in order to take it what proves to be the biggest home game for OUR Lady Griz for so many reasons. Tip off is 2 p.m. and you can buy your tickets here

Get to Missoula and support Ali and Torry against the Eagles. Bring your check books to donate to a wonderful cause. Oh, and don’t forget to blow the roof off Dahlberg Arena with applause when OUR newly adopted Copperhead, Alyssa, takes the floor.

Copperhead boys end 31-game nightmare

With Anaconda’s 52-48 win over Corvallis Thursday night, it effectively ended the longest dry spell in the history of Copperhead basketball. The victory snapped a ridiculous 31-game losing streak spanning all the way back during the 2010-11 season. In fact, the last win for the Copperhead program occurred on Feb. 10, 2011, on a 45-43 OT win over Class AA Butte High.

(HERES A LINK TO THE BUTTE HIGH AT ANACONDA GAME IN 2011)

It also served as first-year head coach Bill Hill’s first win at the helm of the Copperheads, bringing their record to 1-6 this season. And believe me, it won’t be his last.

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IMG_5126The Copperheads are a salty bunch this season, willing themselves to Thursday night’s win with heart. The should’ve actually rolled to victory if not for their putrid free throw shooting, connecting on just 16-of-30 attempts (52 pct.).

For a team that hasn’t experienced winning at the varsity level (the only players on the team who have a win as a member of the varsity are Jade Green and Jackson Wagner, a key reserve and starter, respectively, on the 2010-11 3-17 team), last night was a good way to show solid defense can overcome a lack of offensive fire power.

Another little tidbit from the game was Jade Green’s eight points off the bench to kickstart the ‘Heads in the first half, not to mention his technical foul in the third quarter. Seeing teammate Kelley Krumm tied up with Corvallis’ Blake Sylvester on a jump ball, Sylvester swung Krumm wildly after the whistle had blown and looked to have thrown an elbow. Green didn’t stand for it, stepping in to let the Blue Devil that wasn’t going to go down. At that point, Anaconda held an 11 point lead. So not only was it a perfect time for a team-building spark, it showed the all-for-one attitude needed to win at the high school level.

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The team is coming together despite their struggles scoring the ball. It’s been a great season watching their emergence from cellar dweller to possible Cinderella story come the divisional tournament, but the end of February is a long way a way.

Thursday was a good start, however.

NOTE: On the Butte High win, Jade Green scored seven of his final eight points in the fourth quarter, sparking the victory. He had eight Thursday. Wagner scored seven that night, upping that total Thursday with 12 including a clutch 7 of 10 from the free throw line.

Last Copperhead win vs. Butte High, 45-43 F/OT

BUTTE (0-16) – Brock Bond 2-11 4-7 8, Matt Berg 2-5 4-6 8, Tim Dick 2-4 0-0 4, Kyle Shaw 0-1 1-2 1, Cody Carriger 5-12 0-1 10, Austin Davis 4-7 0-0 8, Travis Komm 0-2 2-4 2, Sam Hodge 0-0 0-0 0, Beau Culver 1-2 0-0 2, Bucky Bugni 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 16-44 11-20 43.

ANACONDA (3-12) – Kyle Moore 3-16 7-10 15, John Stoppler 1-5 0-0 3, Jayde Thompson 0-0 0-0 0, Jayce Barclay 2-5 1-2 6, Nate Staedler 2-2 1-3 5, Jackson Wagner 2-9 3-3 7, Dallas Cook 1-4 0-2 2, Jade Green 2-6 4-8 8, Joey Orrino 0-0 0-2 0. Totals 13-47 16-30 46.

Butte 15 7 12 9 – 43

Anaconda 11 8 9 18 – 46

3-point goals – Butte 0-7 (Bond 0-4, Berg 0-2, Shaw 0-1), Anaconda 4-22 (Moore 2-8, Stoppler 1-2, Barclay 1-4, Wagner 0-7, Cook 0-1). Rebounds – Butte 38 (Davis 9, Carriger 6, Komm 6), Anaconda 34 (Cook 7, Green 7). Assists – Butte 7 (Shaw 5), Anaconda 8 (Barclay 2, Green 2). Steals – Butte 8 (Berg 3), Anaconda 5 (Barclay 2). Blocks – Butte 2 (Davis, Komm), Anaconda 1 (Staedler). Turnovers – Butte 20, Anaconda 13. Fouls – Butte 28, Anaconda 17. Fouled out – Berg, Davis, Bond, Carriger. Technicals – Bond, Butte bench.

Below are the shot charts and scoring for both teams.

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