Capital vs. Senior

Helena Capital’s Brennan Casey breaks Billings Senior tackles for a first down during Friday’s game at Vigilante Stadium. The Bruins beat the Broncs 42-21.


Class AA

• After a 21-all tie with Billings Senior at halftime, Helena Capital scored 21 unanswered points in the third quarter for a 42-21 win over the No. 3 Broncs. The victory at Vigilante Stadium is the Bruins' (4-5) first over the two-time defending state champions since 2013. The triumph also kept CHS' playoff hopes alive for the No. 8 seed, which may come down next week's game against Missoula Sentinel. Bridger Grovom threw three touchdown passes for Capital, including a 32-yarder to Cy Miller to give the Bruins a 27-21 third-quarter lead. Grovom also had a 3-yard scoring toss to Kaelan Casey and a 34-yarder to Parker Johnston. Oran Nash-Bergen scored twice for Billings Senior, the first on a 31-yard pass from Matt Plasterer and the second on a 71-yard interception return with less than a minute to play before half for a 21-21 tie.

Tommy Mellott threw for 282 yards and five touchdowns as Butte raced past Billings Skyview 56-13. Bulldog running back Kameron Moreno added 117 yards on 26 carries as well as four-yard touchdown score in the second quarter. Butte scored 28 points in the second quarter and led 35-7 at halftime. Senior wide receiver had 94 yards on five catches and a pair of scores. Four different receivers had touchdowns for the Bulldogs. Skyview had just nine first downs. Josh Macy led the rushing attack for the Falcons, taking nine carries for 41 yards and a touchdown.

Blake Counts three rushing touchdowns and one receiving touchdown helped lead high-scoring Kalispell Flathead to a 62-23 win over Missoula Hellgate at Washington-Grizzly Stadium. The scoring output is a season-high for the Braves.

Grady Koenig scored on a 3-yard run in overtime to give fifth-ranked Helena a 34-28 overtime win against Missoula Sentinel. The Bengals boosted their record to 7-2. Sentinel (4-5) lost for the third time in OT and fifth time in games that have gone down to the wire. Montana Griz football commit Elias Dewaters capped  the drive with a spinning, 8-yard TD scamper to knot the score at 28-28 with 1:14 left. Sentinel had the ball first in OT and failed to score. A fumbled snap from center on 3rd-and-goal from the 1-yard line left the hosts with a 4th-and-4 situation. The Spartans tried a shovel pass but fell a yard short.

Class A

• Senior quarterback Mitchell Norslien rushed for four touchdowns and passed for three more as Lewistown wrapped up its regular season with a 55-27 victory over Glendive in an Eastern A matchup. The playoff-bound Golden Eagles (7-2) finished with a 5-0 record at home this season. Lewistown will be the conference No. 3 seed to state behind Billings Central and Laurel. Norslien's scoring runs covered 10, 45, 12 and 5 yards. His TD passes went to Jacob Clinton (twice) and Collin Comes.

Easton Page had an 85-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and teammate Travis Bagby ran back an interception 60 yards to help highlight Belgrade's 44-6 win over visiting and winless Hardin. Page also had a 35-yard scoring run for the Panthers. Quarterback Dyson Cheney threw a scoring pass and also contributed a rushing touchdown. 

Carson Rostad threw for four touchdowns and ran for a fifth as top-ranked Hamilton concluded a perfect regular season with a 40-0 trouncing of No. 5 Dillon. Two of Rostad's tosses went to Tucker Jones.

Colton McPhee ran for three scores and caught a fourth TD to power No. 3 Columbia Falls to a 62-8 romp over Polson. McPhee scored the game's first three touchdowns, sandwiching 15- and 47-yard runs around a 47-yard pass reception from Drew Morgan, who threw for two scores and ran for two more. 

• Corvallis erased a 13-0 deficit after one quarter to earn a 52-32 win over Butte Central and secure a playoff spot out of the Southwest A. Corvallis' Hunter Pinheiro ran for 170 yards and three touchdowns. Quarterback Liang Leidle ran for 165 yards and four touchdowns, and completed 10 of 17 passes for 119 yards. 

Class B

• No. 4-ranked Bigfork used 243 passing yards and three touchdowns from Anders Epperly in beating Deer Lodge 41-14. Bigfork (7-1) also received 71 rushing yards and two scores from Randy Stultz. Bigfork led 27-14 at halftime. Epperly's TD passes went to Jacob Herd (36 yards), Colton Reichenback (5) and Luke Schmit (39).

• Quarterback Dylan Smith threw six touchdown passes to break Braxton Hill's school record as the Anaconda Copperheads concluded their season with a 46-13 route over Thompson Falls. Hill's record of five touchdown passes had stood since 2016. Anaconda concludes the year at 1-7 and the Blue Hawks end at 0-8. Thompson Falls built a 7-0 lead after the first quarter before the Copperheads stormed back with 22 unanswered points in the second quarter. Smith's first touchdown was a 29-yard scoring throw to Kylar Gochanour. The duo then connected again for a 20-yard touchdown. That score was followed by a 15-yard touchdown from Smith to Braedon Sawyer

• Roundup clinched the conference championship with their 38-28 win over Huntley Project. Brody Grebe rushed for four touchdowns including one from 40 yards. The Red Devils scored on four of their six first-half drives, but the Panthers overcame a 12 point deficit at halftime and scored 22 unanswered second-half points.

• Austin Heimer and Kaden Myrstol hooked up on two touchdown passes in helping Red Lodge win at home over Shepherd 33-18. Finnegan Davis also scored rushing TDs of 66, 5 and 36 yards for the Rams. Davis rushed 12 times for 127 yards. Myrstol caught four passes for 62 yards. 

Shaye Wilkie threw for four touchdowns and ran for another as No. 5 Colstrip overcame Baker 41-8. 

Andres Lopez ran for three TDs to lead Malta into the Class B playoffs with a 33-24 win over Glasgow. Lopez's runs were from 49, 4 and 6 yards. 

• Townsend got the best of Jefferson in the annual Elkhorn area rivalry game 42-20. The Bulldogs enter the postseason as District 5's No. 3 seed with a 5-3 record. Townsend quarterback Tyson Racht accounted for six touchdowns with two scoring passes to Kameron Rauser, and one strike each to Aaron Geisser and Zach Idland. He also had two rushing TDs. Jace Reddick had a pick-6 on defense.

• Missoula Loyola running back Ryan Tirrell ran for four touchdowns against Western B rival and eighth-ranked Florence, leading his third-ranked Rams to a 43-27 win in the regular-season finale. Loyola finishes as the top seed in the West and Florence is No. 4.


Alex Schriver threw for two touchdowns and ran for another as third-ranked Fairview (9-0) scored all its points in the first half en route to a 59-20 win over Lodge Grass. Schriver threw a 22-yard TD pass to Jesse Selting and a 13-yarder to Bryce Neu. Cody Asberg also ran for two scores, from 78 and 77 yards.


• Hot Springs clinched the Western C 6-Man title with a 69-0 win over Lima. The win capped a 9-1 regular season for the Savage Heat, who forfeited their season in 2017 after winning the 2016 state title. "We were really happy just to be back playing varsity football this year," Hot Springs coach Jim Lawson said. "To come back and play well, it took us a few games to get enough experience. We've been improving every week. It's nice to see us in this position of playing good football again — and against a really tough Western conference, too." Brandon Knudsen threw two touchdown passes, ran for a score and returned a punt for a touchdown. Luke Waterbury had a rushing touchdown and a fumble recovery for a score. Kyle Lawson ran for two touchdowns and caught another. Tyler Knudsen returned a punt for a touchdown. Tyler Carr hauled in a touchdown pass. Jack McAllister and Jesse Uski each had one rushing score. 

Edward Murnion scored four touchdowns and Keenan Murnion added two to lead seventh-ranked Jordan to 48-14 trouncing of Ekalaka. Two of Edward's scores came on passes from Keenan, who threw for three TDs. Edward Murnion had two kick returns for touchdowns. 


• Helena Capital came away with top honors in the two-day Missoula County Public Schools (MCPS) Invitational. The Class AA Bruins beat Class A Corvallis in the championship match, 25-21, 25-23. Setter Audrey Hofer led the Bruins (22-2) on the day with 60 assists and 20 digs, and Paige Bartsch had eight blocks and three service aces. Dani Bartsch added 25 kills and Sarah Ashley had three aces. "That's always an exciting thing to make it that far," Corvallis coach Kasey Arceniega said. "The biggest objective for us was to try to play to our potential. We knew we'd be facing some defensive pressure. We wanted to hang in there and see how we'd handle that. We knew it'd be a fun day. Everybody's excited to see how far we made it, but we thought we had the potential to do that. They handled the pressure well and made adjustments well." The Blue Devils (11-1) avenged their only loss, beating Florence to reach the championship match. They'll enter the district tournament next week as the top seed in the Southwest A. Maureen Jessop paced Corvallis with 55 kills and 72 digs in the tournament. Charlotte Powell added 51 kills and 17 aces. Hannah Martin tallied 161 assists. Casey Sison chipped in 78 digs and Isabel Evans had 23 blocks.

• Nienke Reijnen had 20 kills and Draya Wacker had 14 digs and four aces to help Melstone outlast Denton-Geyser-Stanford 29-15, 25-23, 25-9, 19-25, 15-5 in Class C action. Anna Verzelloni also had four aces, and she finished with 13 assists, as well. Adie Woodhall had 15 assists and 20 digs for D-G-S. 

• Shawnita Bixby finished with nine kills and Bailey Egan 22 digs as Colstrip swept Baker 25-18, 25-18, 25-23 in a Class B match. Andie Bachelor had 25 digs and nine kills for Baker.

• Ekalaka used Tori Tooke's 13 kills and Heather LaBree's 16 digs in sweeping visiting Circle 25-13, 25-19, 25-17 in a Class C match. The winning Bulldogs also received four aces from Hannah LaBree and three blocks from Claire Callahan. Ekalaka's Ryann Moline finished with nine kills, two blocks and two aces.

• Bridger beat Reed Point-Rapelje in three sets 25-12, 25-19, & 25-11. Bridger’s Jessica Adkins had 12 kills, 12 aces and one block. Teammate Emily Adkins had 14 assists and Kyra Kroll had seven digs. For Reed Point-Rapelje, Carlee Blodgett had 11 kills and four blocks.

Boys Soccer

• Billings West’s Riley Krueger-Harding got the scoring started in the 38th minute, Hayden Bentzel nailed a penalty kick shortly after halftime for a 2-0 lead and Kaleb Vestal became the 15th Golden Bears player to score a goal this season in a 3-0 win over Butte that puts West into the Class AA state tournament for the fourth consecutive season.

Girls Soccer

• After a scoreless first half, Emma Lensing and Nichole Unsworth scored within three minutes of each other to send Billings West to a 2-0 win over Butte in a Class AA playoff match. Lensing, from Avery Kimmel, put West up 1-0 in the 60th minute. Unsworth then doubled the lead on an assist from Amaya Winkler in the 63rd.


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