Home Glaciers Sullivan de Glacier is making a big impact as a senior – in two sports

Sullivan de Glacier is making a big impact as a senior – in two sports

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Connor Sullivan’s 3-point shot may shock some basketball viewers, but since the senior led the Wolfpack from beyond the arc a year ago, it shouldn’t.

The 5-foot-10 guard has also become a primary weapon for Glacier, who is riding a three-game winning streak in tonight’s Crosstown home game with Flathead.

During that span, Sullivan tallied 49 points, bringing his season average to 12.1 per game.

“Connor played a lot last year, but he really played that primary scorer role,” said Glaciers coach Mark Harkins, whose club face the Braves at 7:30 p.m. (girls game is 6). . “I can’t say I’m surprised. Back last summer, he was shooting the ball very well and consistently.

“I guess what I really like is that Connor has this confidence that he can miss a couple straight, and knows it’s his job to be a shooter, and put it back together. “

Glacier is 5-6 in Western A games (6-9 overall), with a roster that had to replace three starters. Sullivan’s 40 3-pointers are among the most in AA; spacing helps the Pack get the ball to 6-7 Noah Dowler, 6-5 John Pyron or 6-4 Nolan Hyde.

“Last year we had Weston Price and Keifer Spohnhauer (on the outside), and they’re all really good,” Sullivan said. “I just watched them and waited. But Coach Harkins and I discussed how maybe guys like me, Will Salonen and Ty Olsen needed to play that role a bit.

Sullivan was the top marksman in 2020-21, however, with 22 threes. Yet his value goes beyond that: many times Harkins sticks him on the opponent’s most dangerous guard.

“Another thing that I really appreciate is that he’s a great middleman,” Harkins said. “Between the technical staff and the team – he has a great way of reading the situation, and if things are a bit heavy he can lighten them. But he also knows how to challenge his teammates.

“I want to have a good time in practices and games,” Sullivan admitted. “At the same time…I’m competitive and I want to win too.”

Glacier football coach Grady Bennett saw the same qualities: a quick-witted player who was intense enough to excel in all three phases.

“Maybe he doesn’t seem as intense,” Bennett said. “When the chips are down, man, this guy is going to compete.

“With football he just seemed to come when we needed him the most. It just seemed to be at its best when we needed it. It’s the sign of a great player.

Sullivan caught 45 passes, second only to teammate (in football and basketball) Jake Turner, for 764 yards last fall. He was second-team All-State at receiver; his work on corners and special teams earned him first-team honors as an “athlete” in defense.

His interception in the end zone and 59-yard reception guided the Wolfpack over Helena Capital in September; his 82-yard kickoff return for a touchdown late in the first half sparked an October win over Hellgate — a game in which he had two more assists.

Bennett said every offseason he challenges his returning players to match what Evan Epperly did from his (good) junior year to the (really good) senior season. He calls it “The Jump”.

“For years I talked about Evan Epperly,” Bennett said. “Well, Connor Sullivan did the same thing this fall. He really became a three-way starter. senior year is great.

His grilling skills brought him to Carroll College, the Frontier Conference powerhouse in Helena.

“My aunt and a couple uncles went to Carroll,” Sullivan noted. “I want to get into teaching. My father, his brothers all taught. I just wanted to follow them and see what was developing.

Sullivan’s father, Bill, coached the Glacier Girls for three seasons. If it is obvious that a coach’s child has been spending extra time in the gym, the player should still do so in games.

The field started 1-4, including an 84-60 loss to a Bozeman Hawk team that was shooting very well. The other three losses were by three, two and three points.

Last week, Glacier handed Helena Capital its first loss, 48-34. The Bruins were without dynamic guard Brayden Koch, who just returned to the roster this week after a fight with mono.

“But they had beaten three teams without him anyway,” Harkins said. “Shoot, we held them to 10 at halftime. The defensive effort in both games (including a 52-37 victory at Helena High) was excellent.

Capital had the makings of a charge in the third quarter, but Sullivan hit his third three of the game to help quell that. He finished with 17 points.

“Fearless shooting,” Harkins said.

“The last two weeks we’ve done a good job, when it happens, just known to calm down and focus,” Sullivan said. “We kind of started to do a little run, we got the lead back. And we just kept going.