Columbus dents Rams ambitions

Alastair Baker
News Editor
Thursday, March 12, 2020
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Photo by Colleen Vomund
Austin Heimer, Red Lodge senior, steps up to claim points against Columbus.

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Photo by Colleen Vomund
Red Lodge Senior Braden Tomlin chases down a chance against Manhattan.

Having enjoyed an excellent District tournament and defeating number 2 seed Columbus into the bargain, the Red Lodge Rams came down to earth at the Southern B at Metra Park, Billings. 

The Rams started their campaign against Manhattan and showed the spice and skill they had demonstrated at Districts by dominating the first quarter with an 8-point lead. 

Manhattan cut this back to 15-9 but the Rams were not perturbed as they played great basketball with good hustling moves and forcing turnovers. 

However somewhere the Rams tripped and Manhattan stepped up a gear to take lead towards the end of the 2nd quarter.  

Red Lodge maintained and was inspired by a 3 pointer by Austin Heimer to get the score back to 20-18. But the final two minutes of the half saw Manhattan collect 7 more points. 

Jay Jetmore, Heimer, Elijah Reynolds and Corby Mann worked tirelessly in front of a stubborn Manhattan but the biggest problem remained getting the points.

Time and again they made great passes under the basket, and penetrated the lanes only to see their efforts fizzle out against the iron. 

Mann proved to be an excellent blocker of shots but with everything this night the rebound went back to the opponent and into the Rams net. 

Heimer cut into the lead again making it 49-42 but the Rams were deflated as Manhattan kept finding the basket to make it 58-48. 

Heimer and Trey Allen lead in points with 12 each, with Mann on 10. 

The defeat set Red Lodge up against Columbus who they had destroyed at Districts but tonight Columbus had other ideas. 

The Rams began well enough with Heimer scoring a 3-pointer, as he appears to like to do against his nemesis, and the Mann stealing the ball to put the Rams 7-2 up. 

The team was buoyant but lost their concentration briefly and soon found themselves 15-10 down. 

Mann tickled the net with a shot and suddenly memories of Manhattan came flooding back. 

Red Lodge were becoming shapeless and frantic as Columbus made it 23-10. 

Red Lodge went into a drought, adding nothing to their tally for 6 minutes.

Heimer was getting visibly frustrated in what was fast becoming his final basketball game for his school as it was for Braden Tomlin. 

Half time was reached with Red Lodge trailing 38-18. 

The Rams went into the 2nd half with more belief but still Columbus edged ahead of them at 51-32. 

Jetmore and Allen surfed around the Columbus area living off scraps but slowly eroding the lead to 14 points and then 12 as Allen got a 2-pointer.

Heimer and co. continued to battle but Columbus was playing one of their best games of the season.

Heimer missed a 3-pointer and then fouled once too many times and was out of this game.

Manhattan closed up shop with a 69-52 win. 

 Jetmore claimed 15 points and Reynolds 14 with Mann on 11 and Heimer 8. 

Free throws were impressive at 13 of 17 made, although of the 14 three point attempts, only 3 went in.