BILLINGS — The last time the Montana State Billings baseball team played in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference championship in 2019, it hoisted the trophy and earned the program’s first-ever berth into the NCAA Division II West Region tournament.

After the 2020 championship was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic and following a tough 2021 season, MSUB is back in the GNAC championships which start Thursday morning in Monmouth, Oregon. The No. 3 seeded Jackets face No. 2 Western Oregon at 11 a.m. and No. 1 Northwest Nazarene at 2 p.m.

The format for the three-team event is double-elimination, with the winning teams on Thursday advancing to the championship games on Friday. If all three teams remain after Thursday’s games, Northwest Nazarene will earn an automatic spot in the championship game.

The winner of the GNAC title earns a berth in the West Region championships next week.

The Yellowjackets finished the regular season with a record of 25-25 overall and went 16-16 in conference play.

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