The Chipper

By Mick Holien

I have to admit I was melancholic about returning courtside to Dahlberg Arena where for more than three decades I described University of Montana men and women’s basketball games.

But after discovering where I was sitting – at the college visiting g radio spot – any thought of distraction faded and Blake Hempstead gleefully, or in my case sometimes too over the top, described a disappointed and shortened result of the final two games for Anaconda at the Boys State B in Missoula.

While only provided commentary for a few tournament games over a state, but I developed an affinity for the Copperheads. They pantomime retiring head coach Bill Hill, whose son Brandon is the team’s leader.

Anaconda plays tough-nose, never-say-die hoop never better exhibited than after Hill fouled out and the Copperheads facing a double digit deficit yet fought back to take the lead falling at the end.

And just what in the heck is in the water in Bigfork as the Vikings not only powered through a tough field in Missoula to claim the title but completed an unscathed record.

Speaking about outstanding, the Graz did what they did all year, ignore the score and just finish with more points that the other guy.

It brought back memories of 2002 when after escaping the Cats in the semi when Dan Trammel came down the right baseline in Bozeman for a monster dunk off David Bell’s missed trey. With that kind of momentum beating Eastern that year was serine.

Since the Eagles joined the BSC seemingly any time the teams have got together it has been a fistfight.

With a No. 1o 14 seed, Montana must travel to face Michigan. Don’t be surprised that this team might accomplish a first-round win

I have a definite for this team and four players in particular in Ahmaad Rorie, Fabian Krislovic, Bobby Morehead and Mike Oguine since they were members of my last team.

I have not seen a more athletic Montana team that if they set aside the distractions, and there are a few, and make us proud. Up with Montana.

Well stand by for all the criticism that surfaces about how much money is wasted during the days preceding the chipper.



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