Week 3 of the high school football season is in the books. And with it, the new 406mtsports.com rankings are out.
This is the point of the season where teams are starting to separate themselves and we have a better idea of who is legit and who still has some work to do. Hard to believe we've almost hit the halfway point of the regular season already.
Don't worry, before we know it, it will be snowing outside. (Shudders).
But back to the rankings. Starting with Class AA, defending champion Billings West (3-0) drubbed crosstown rival Billings Skyview 40-3, to remain unbeaten and the top-ranked team. West has scored at least 40 points in all three of its games this year, and that has been without standout running back DeMarcus Carr, who was injured in the opener against Missoula Big Sky and has yet to retake the field since.
Butte (3-0) remains at No. 2 after winning a 35-27 matchup with Helena High (2-1) in a showdown of top five teams last week. Despite the loss, the Bengals remain in the fifth spot on my rankings while Helena Capital (3-0) and Missoula Sentinel (3-0) are Nos. 3 and 4, respectively. The Bruins and Spartans will clash this Friday for a big game in Helena.
Hamilton (3-0) stays put at No. 1 in Class A after handling Stevensville, 55-0. Miles City (3-0) jumps into the rankings for the first time this season after topping previous-No. 3 Laurel, 21-16. The Cowboys come in at No. 4 behind Billings Central (2-0) and Frenchtown (3-0), both of which won on Friday. Lewistown (1-1) did not play last week but remains at No. 5.
Class B didn't see many drastic changes this week as almost all of the teams in my top 10 won. Fairfield (2-0) continues to lead the charge after beating Cut Bank 28-7. Red Lodge (3-0) jumps up one spot to No. 5 this week after beating Colstrip 44-6 while Huntley Project (2-1) drops one place to No. 6. Malta (2-0) makes its debut this year at No. 10.
There will be a top five meeting in Class B this week as Loyola Sacred Heart (2-1), the fourth-ranked team, hosts No. 3 Manhattan (2-0) on Friday.
The top seven teams in my 8-Man rankings stay put, led by Fairview (3-0). Seeley-Swan (3-0) moves up one spot to No. 8 while West Yellowstone (3-0) and Ekalaka (3-0) both come in ranked for the first time this year at Nos. 9 and 10, respectively. No. 5 Flint Creek (Drummond-Philipsburg) hosts Seeley-Swan in a battle of top 10 teams on Friday.
Similar to 8-Man, the 6-Man ranks also see the top seven stay put with victories/forfeits. Wibaux (3-0) remains the team to beat among the 6-Man teams but has a date with No. 4 Richey-Lambert (3-0) on Saturday afternoon which should be a good one. Defending runner-up Jordan (2-1) jumps up two spots to No. 8 while Geraldine-Highwood (2-1) comes in at No. 10 this week. Shields Valley (2-1) remains at No. 9 after a close loss with No. 3 Hot Springs last week, 25-13. There will be three top 10 matches this week as No. 2 Big Sandy (3-0) hosts No. 6 White Sulphur Springs (2-1) while Jordan hits the road to take on No. 5 Hobson-Moore-Judith Gap (3-0).
Here are the full rankings:
1. Billings West (3-0)
2. Butte (3-0)
3. Helena Capital (3-0)
4. Missoula Sentinel (3-0)
5. Helena (2-1)
1. Hamilton (3-0)
2. Billings Central (2-0)
3. Frenchtown (3-0)
4. Miles City (3-0) (Not ranked last week)
5. Lewistown (1-1)
1. Fairfield (2-0)
2. Eureka (3-0)
3. Manhattan (2-0)
4. Missoula Loyola (2-1)
5. Red Lodge (3-0) (+1)
6. Huntley Project (2-1) (-1)
7. Townsend (2-1)
8. Glasgow (2-0)
9. Florence (2-1)
10. Malta (2-0) (Not ranked last week)
1. Fairview (3-0)
2. Shelby (3-0)
3. Clark Fork/Alberton-Superior (3-0)
4. Great Falls Central (3-0)
5. Flint Creek/Drummond-Philipsburg (2-1)
6. Fort Benton (3-0)
7. Circle (3-0)
8. Seeley-Swan (3-0) (+1)
9. West Yellowstone (3-0) (Not ranked last week)
10. Ekalaka (3-0) (Not ranked last week)
1. Wibaux (3-0)
2. Big Sandy (3-0)
3. Hot Springs (3-0)
4. Richey-Lambert (3-0)
5. Hobson-Moore-Judith Gap (3-0)
6. White Sulphur Springs (2-1)
7. Power-Dutton-Brady (3-0)
8. Jordan (2-1) (+2)
9. Shields Valley (2-1)
10. Geraldine-Highwood (2-1) (Not ranked last week)