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HELENA — Dennis Flowers III never thought of himself playing for a smaller school.

That was until he stepped onto the Carroll College campus.

Flowers, a 6-foot-2 combo guard from La Canada, California, plans to join the  Carroll men’s basketball program after seeing plenty of success with St. Francis High. He's committed to the Saints and plans to sign with them on Tuesday.

“I never gave (small schools) a chance, but I ended up really liking (Carroll),” Flowers said. “I feel like it is going to push me, and the (Helena) community seems really enjoyable.”

Carroll coach Kurt Paulson said he not only likes Flowers’ ability to score, but also his ability to be dynamic on both ends of the court.

“He’s a skilled shooter from three and he’s a very quick defender with long arms,” Paulson said.

Flowers spent his senior season at St. Francis averaging 17.5 points, 5.7 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game.

The Golden Knights won 24 games that season before losing to Oxnard High in the Division 3AA quarterfinals.

In that game, Flowers finished with 16 points.

“The leadership is all there and he is a perfect fit for Carroll,” St. Francis coach Todd Wolfson said. “He is probably one of the best shooters I have ever coached. He can really shoot the ball and he is also really athletic. He can get up there and dunk it and play either on or off the ball.”

That doesn’t mean there is no room for improvement.

At 170 pounds, Flowers said he knows he will have to hit the weight room as soon as he arrives to Carroll.

“I won’t be playing against high schoolers so I know I have to get stronger,” Flowers said. “I also have to be more consistent with my jump shot and make sure I make those open shots.”

During Flowers’ final season at St. Francis he shot 45 percent from the field and 49 percent from 3-point range.

Off the court, Flowers also has a 3.7 grade-point average and plans to study health sciences when he comes to Carroll.

“In terms of character he is a high-level kid,” Wolfson said. “He has a great smile, he is a great person and academically is far beyond what we can ask for.”

Flowers joins a recruiting class that includes another Californian in Gaven Ramirez (Corona), along with Jonny Hillman of Post Falls, Idaho, Brendan Temple of Castle Rock, Colorado, and Choteau’s Sayer Patton.

Carroll comes off a season where it finished with 29 wins and reached its first NAIA National Championship game before losing to Georgetown College.

Paulson said he is returning every eligible player from last season’s roster, but with the departure of seniors such as Match Burnham, Matt Wyman and Ife Kalejaiye, Paulson said he is still looking for one more spot to fill but likes how his team is coming together.

Ryan Kuhn covers Carroll College athletics for the Independent Record and 406mtsports.com. Email him at ryan.kuhn@406mtsports.com or follow him on Twitter at @rskuhn

Carroll College sports reporter

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