HELENA — Propelled by Grady Koenig's five rushing touchdowns, No. 5 Helena High came back from a 14-0 deficit to rout No. 3 Great Falls High 47-21 at Vigilante Stadium on Friday.
The win moves Helena to 5-1 on the year, while Great Falls slips to 4-2.
Koenig sped to 274 yards on 23 carries, racing to the house on runs of 2, 25, 3, 33 and 72 yards. His 274 yards is the third most in HHS history for one game, behind Ryan Arntson's record of 289 in 2016, and Delmar Jones' 288 in 1974.
Koenig's five rushing TDs is tied for second on the school's all-time list for one game, with Lee Ireland (1930), Bob Hanshaw (1935), Grady Simpson (1998), Tyson Bogumill (2005) and Ryan Arnston (2016). Hanshaw holds the record of six touchdowns in a game as well, also in 1935.
"That was a hell of a performance by Grady, but on a couple of those, the O-line opened up holes so big, I think I could've ran for TDs on them," quipped HHS coach Scott Evans.
Great Falls, coached by Capital High grad Mark Samson, jumped out to an early 14-0 lead on TD passes from Blake Thelen to Keegan Bistodeau, on the second play of the game, and Kyle Torgerson, for 44 and 23 yards respectively.
The home team then scored on their next four possessions, three on Koenig TDs and the other a 68-yard strike from quarterback Ty McGurran to Zach Spiroff.
The Bengals led 27-14 at halftime, and then outscored the Bison 21-7 after the intermission.
Helena High's first score in the second half came on a fumbled GFH punt attempt. When Jack Kanta jarred the ball loose at the Bison's 3-yard line, the pigskin plopped into teammate Hayden Ferguson's hands, who was standing just inside the end zone.
HHS kicker Cavan Wade booted five PATs. McGurran rushed for 109 yards.
The Bison's final tally was Thelen's third TD pass, and second to Torgerson, for 4 yards.
"Great Falls is one of the most explosive teams in the state, and we couldn't deal with it at first," said Evans, a Great Falls High alum, referring to his alma mater's quick-scoring offense. "But our guys didn't panic, they responded with their usual grit. The DBs showed a lot of hustle out there, and the special teams came through in a big way, too."
Among the defensive standouts were Cooper Biegler, Sam Shephard and Keanan Horne.