Central Montana Sports Round Up With Baker Bob
The time has come to unveil the 2023 edition of the CMR Rustlers basketball athletes.
Gone from the lineup is their leading scorer and rebounder Trigg Mapes. Tyler Moore’s shoes will take some time to fill. The Rustlers will need the guard play of Hunter McMann, Josh Stimac, and Nate Reeves to manage the ball on the outside and feed it inside to Keal Barns, River Wassson, and Dean Blair. Jace Crane should also see floor time for Coach Cislo. The Rustlers went 8-10 last year with a 6-8 conference record and defeated their crosstown, rivals the Bison twice during the season.
River Wasson will have to improve his nine point scoring average and his rebounding will also be needed if they hope to win games. Cale Barnes while not a prolific shooter, does put them down at the rate of 50%.
Games Start Friday Night
The Rustlers begin on Friday December 8 with a 7 PM tip off against Kalispell Glacier. Glacier graduated last year's bench and starters, they will be an unknown quantity and we will find out together as coach. Mark Harkins puts his revamped Wolfpack on the court.
Then on Saturday at 2 PM on 99.9 Big Sky sports radio the Rustlers will host Kalispell Flathead, a team that graduated only one senior and now displays a battle tested group of athletes.
Leading the Braves is 6 foot 6 Noah Cummings their number one score for last year.
Coach Dirk Jonsrud is anxious to put last year's 1- 17 record behind him.. The winning formula for a win at this level is not always raw talent. It's going to take a coach getting his team in a winning state of mind and gelling together as a unit to impose their will on the opponent. How quickly a team starts to play in sync will pay dividends for each squad. I look for the fighting Cislo's to be competitive in every game, and maybe even surprise a few competitors in the eastern AA. Don't be surprised when CMR starts December at 2-0.
AP's Top 25 in College Basketball 2023
Gallery Credit: Noah Haynes
The World's Largest Basketball Player, Sun Ming Ming, Playing for the Grand Rapids Flight
Gallery Credit: Getty Images