HELENA, Mont. – The Carroll College women’s basketball team fell 65-53 to MSU Billings in non-conference matchup Tuesday night at the PE Center in Helena.
The game was considered an exhibition game for MSUB but a regular season game for the Saints.
Carroll controlled most of the first half and jumped out to a 19-8 lead, but the Yellowjackets scored 11 straight points over the last 4:26 of the half to tie the game at 19 going into the break.
MSUB extended their run in the second half to take 26-19 lead before the Saints finally got back on the board with a layup by Katie Estey with 16:48 left in the game.
Carroll took a 35-32 lead on a three-pointer by Bailey Snelling before both teams traded leads. Cassidy Hashley hit a layup with 7:32 to play to cut the MSUB lead to 42-41, but a Kayleen Goggins layup on the ensuing MSUB possession sparked a 10-0 run that put MSUB up for good.
Carroll cut the lead to 59-53 with 1:05 left in the game but MSUB would score six straight to end the game.
Alisha Breen scored 30 points, including 23 in the second half, and 10 rebounds to lead the Yellowjackets. Goggins added 22 for MSUB and Annie DePuydt tallied 10 rebounds.
A trio of Saints scored in double figures led by Snelling with 16, Kalee Junkermier with 14 and Estey with 11. Baylee Watson tallied a team-high seven rebounds.
MSUB outrebounded the Saints 44-28 leading to a 64-532 advantage in field goal attempts for the Yellowjackets.
The Saints next take on Montana State in their first road game of the season on Saturday, Nov. 1 at 2 p.m. The game will be an exhibition for Carroll.
HELENA, Mont. – Gonzaga Prep’s Oona Harrington has verbally committed to Carroll College to play women’s basketball.
Gonzaga Prep in Spokane, Wash., won the 2013-14 Washington 4A state championship. Harrington averaged 8.8 points
per game and 4.7 rebounds per game to help her team go 26-1, en route to the title.
She will likely play a bigger role this season for the Bullpups.
“Oona is a very talented player. She has played on one of the top High School teams in the Northwest as well as a very talented club team, the Spokane Sandpipers,” Carroll College head coach Rachelle Sayers said. “She is a great shooter that also gives up length on the perimeter. We are really excited she has chosen to be a Saint. She is an overachiever in the classroom and on the floor. She completes the 2015 signing class and I don’t think we could have signed 3 better players."
Harrington rounds out a signing class that includes 6-1 center Hannah Deane from Gardiner, Mont., and 5-10 forward Brooke Jones from Manhattan, Mont.
“As soon I as I got there (for a visit) I knew it was the place for me,” Harrington said. “The campus is beautiful and the coaches and team were very welcoming.”
Harrington is also a star in the classroom. She is an honor student with a 3.85 GPA and plans to study pre-medicine.
Harrington won’t be the first in her family to don the purple and gold. Her cousin Kevin Downs played for the men’s team from 1999-2003.
The 5-11 forward will sign her national letter of intent with two teammates in a ceremony in November.
By Kyle Sample, Helena IR
Carroll College guard Bailey Snelling understands that championships are not won during summer. But she is of the mindset that those months, typically considered the offseason for most programs, could be influential as the Saints attempt to return to the national tournament.
Following a trip to the Sweet 16 of the NAIA tournament during the 2012-13 season, the Saints recorded a 14-14 record last winter and spent most of March wondering what the future might hold.
With that in mind, Snelling and a number of her teammates remained in Helena instead of returning home to enjoy the few leisurely months afforded to collegiate basketball players. Aside from a new offense implemented by fourth-year coach Rachelle Sayers, there were eight new players to welcome to the fold and a standard to be set.
“Coach really likes us getting into the gym in the summer; what coach doesn’t?” asked Snelling, who was selected to the preseason All-Frontier team this week.
HELENA, Mont. – The Carroll College Saints trailed 30-26 with just under two minutes to play in the first half before going on a 30-6 run that spanned the half and 15 minutes of game time, en route to a 68-51 women’s basketball victory over Mount Royal University (Alberta) in the season opener for the Saints at the PE Center Friday night.
Four Saints scored in double figures led by Katie Estey with a game-high 22 points and Jordan Johnston with 17 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Kalee Junkermier scored 11 points and Baylee Watson added 10.
The Saints jumped out to an early 20-10 lead before the Cougars went on a 15-4 run to take a 25-24 lead on a 3-pointer by Makell Hoffer with 3:58 left in the first half.
MRU extended their lead to four before the Saints run put the game out of reach.
The Cougars were led by Jayla Verney and Angela Driscoll who scored 15 points each.
Carroll outrebounded Mount Royal 44-15 including a 15-6 edge on the offensive glass.
The Saints next host NCAA D-II foe MSU-Billings on Oct. 28 at 5:30 p.m. at the PE Center.
HELENA, Mont. – When the Carroll College Fighting Saints women’s basketball team takes the floor Friday night in their season opener against Mount Royal University (Alberta) it will be another step to removing the bad taste in the mouth left after a disappointing end to the 2013-14 campaign.
The Saints ended last season with a 14-14 record but lost five of their last six games and fell 58-47 to MSU-Northern in the first round of the Frontier Conference playoffs.
It will be another step but not the first step. That was taken shortly after they lost to Northern.
“The girls immediately went back to work,” head coach Rachelle Sayers said. “They stayed here all summer and spent time in the weight room and the gym getting better. They were so disappointed with the way last season ended, it didn’t sit right with them.”
The returning class is led by Preseason All-conference honoree Bailey Snelling. The senior was the Saints’ leading scorer last season with 381 points. She started every game for Carroll and also had 71 assists and 87 rebounds on the season.
“Bailey is the heart and soul of our program,” Sayers said. “She is one of our hardest workers and she takes pride in representing her school. She always has a great time out there. She plays the game because she loves the game.”
The Saints also return experienced guards Kalee Junkermier and Katie Estey.
“We have really experienced guards,” Sayers said. “I think all three of the returning starters have come into this season as mentally and physically prepared as they ever have. I have a sense from them that they understand what it is going to take for us to be successful and the type of leadership that we will need from them.”
Along with the experienced backcourt comes an inexperienced frontcourt. The four players on the roster that is taller than six-foot are all freshman or sophomores.
Baylee Watson and Mikala Osborne and Jordan Johnston are the incumbent inside players but freshmen Cassidy Hashley and Michaela Dowdy will need to contribute right away for the Saints.
Hashley (Kalispell-Glacier) and Dowdy (Helena Capital) played each other multiple times in high school it was one reason they are ready to take the court quickly at the college level.
“They battled each other all through high school,” Sayers said. “With their size and the competition they faced before they came here, their transition has been pretty quick and we are going to need them this year.”
The Saints open with a somewhat familiar opponent in Mount Royal. Carroll defeated the Cougars 73-66 last season.
This season, MRU brings a 0-4 record into the PE Center but Sayers believes they provide a unique challenge.
“Canadian teams play a different style of game,” Sayers said. “They have a shorter shot clock, they have a different three-point line, and they already have four games under their belt. They are really going to extend our defense. I think we are going to see where we are.”
Despite the unique challenge Sayers says her team is thrilled to take the floor Friday evening.
“I am excited because I know how hard our kids worked during the offseason,’ Sayers said. “We’ve been through a lot. The returners were here during the summer, working hard. The new kids jumped right in and embraced the expectations of the program. I am just excited to see their hard work come to fruition.”
The game starts at 7 p.m. at the PE Center.
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