Missoula Sentinel's TJ Rausch (15) celebrates with his teammates after a touchdown in the first half in a 24-14 win over Billings Senior. 


Class AA playoffs

Tommy Mellott ran for three touchdowns and threw for another, and Kameron Moreno ran for two TDs as unbeaten Butte (10-0) spotted Kalispell Glacier an early score and ran away with a 51-14 victory in a quarterfinal matchup. After JT Allen hit Jonah Pate from 8 yards out for the first of his two TD passes to give the Wolfpack a 7-0 lead after one quarter, Moreno brought the Bulldogs even from 2 yards out and Mellott followed with back-to-back runs of 9 and 1 yards for a 20-7 halftime lead. Glacier kept it interesting with a 27-yard scoring toss from Allen to Ethan Diedi to make it 20-14 in the third quarter, but Butte ran off four consecutive scores -- including a 15-yard interception return by Billy Kelly

Carter Ash broke open a close game with a 55-yard interception return for a score early in the fourth quarter and the Bozeman defense rose to the occasion once again as the Hawks defeated Helena 17-7 in quarterfinal action. It's the sixth time in 10 games that Bozeman (9-1) has held its opponent to seven points or fewer. The Bengals had pulled within 10-7 with 4:57 to play in the third quarter on a 4-yard run by Raef Miller before Ash's big play. The Hawks led 10-0 after scoring twice in the second quarter, first on a 34-yard pass from Jake D'Agostino to Kenneth Eiden midway through the second quarter and then on a 29-yard field goal by Alexander Swann with 1:40 before halftime. Bozeman has allowed double-digit scoring four times this season: 20 points by Billings West, 14 by Great Falls CMR, 19 by Billings Senior and in the only defeat, 21-18 to Missoula Big Sky on Sept. 6.

• After an early Billings Senior touchdown, Missoula Sentinel rattled off 24 straight points and downed the Broncs 24-14 to advance to the semifinals. A 3-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Dayton Bay to Preston Jones gave the Spartans a 10-7 lead and they would never trail again. Jaxon Lee added on a 37-yard touchdown run while do-everything sophomore Zac Crews tacked on another to make the score 24-7 at the break. The Spartans' last state championship appearance was in 1984 and their last state title came in 1972. 

Josh Erbacher threw for 405 yards and four touchdowns to lead Billings West to a 48-27 win over Helena Capital in thequarterfinals. Erbacher completed 16 of 19 passes for the Golden Bears (9-1), who outscored the Bruins 21-7 in the second half, including 14-0 in the fourth quarter. West's Taco Dowler caught two passes, both for touchdowns that totaled 129 yards, and Zach Tallman had three catches for 121 yards and a score. Neil Daily had six receptions for 104 yards. Demarcus Carr rushed for 89 yards and two TDs on 18 carries. For Capital (8-3), Kadyn Craigle rushed 19 times for 94 yards, and Bridger Grovom went 25 for 49 for 274 yards, two TDs and two interceptions.


Divisional playoffs

Eastern A

• Billings Central coasted past Glendive 25-13, 25-16, 25-22 and into the championship match behind 13 kills and five digs by Olivia Moten-Schell. Cindy Gray had 11 kills and four blocks for the Rams. Meadow Torres and Brittney Kaufman each punched down seven kills, and Torres shared team digs honors with Ashley Clapp at 16 for Glendive. 

Olivia Moten-Schell powered 18 kills and had two blocks, and Grace Zeier added eight digs and three aces to keep Billings Central moving ahead with a 3-0 sweep of Hardin. Alyssa Pretty Weasel had six kills, two blocks and two aces for the Bulldogs. 

Jessalyn Chvilicek led with nine kills and three aces, and Cassidy Acor added 2.5 blocks as Havre rolled past Lewistown 25-20, 25-18, 25-20. Taylin Trafton had eight kills, Macy Mangold 24 assists and Jessica Morgan all five of her team's blocks for the Golden Eagles. 

Taylor Lee had nine kills and three blocks, and Ryleigh Simenson added 19 assists and five aces as Miles City downed Livingston in five sets. Abby Kolcot had 15 kills and eight blocks for the Rangers, who also received four aces from Shania Johnson

Western A

Cassidy Strizic put down 17 kills, had three aces and 1.5 blocks, and Maci Reopelle pitched in with 21 assists, 26 digs, five blocks and four aces to lead Butte Central past Polson 25-16, 25-17, 23-25, 25-16 and into a showdown with Columbia Falls on Saturday for a shot at Corvallis in the championship. Avery Kelly added 10 kills and four blocks for the Maroons. For Polson, Maggie Todd had 17 kills, three blocks and two aces, and Berkley Ellis provided 13 digs and 11 assists. 

Isabel Evans led with 12 kills and two blocks, Madeline Gilder added 11 kills and 12 digs, and Hannah Hutchinson chipped in with 10 kills and three aces as Corvallis kept rolling with a 25-19, 27-25, 25-15 sweep of Columbia Falls in the unbeaten semifinal to move into Saturday's championship match. Hannah Martin had 34 of the Blue Devils' 35 assists. For Columbia Falls, Mady Hoerner had 12 kills and 10 digs, and Dillen Hoerner added 10 kills, 13 digs and a block. Kamber Brown provided 24 assists and two aces for the Wildkats.

Maggie Todd was all over the floor with 16 kills, 20 digs, three blocks and three aces, and Misty Tenas contributed 14 kills and two blocks to lead Polson over Stevensville 25-15, 16-25, 25-17, 25-16 in an elimination match. Maddalena Margini topped Stevi with 12 kills and three blocks, and Ella Hendrickson added 11 kills.

Cassidy Strizic was tops with 14 kills, and Maci Reopelle provided nine kills, 24 assists and 22 digs to help Butte Central rally past Dillon 23-25, 25-18, 25-16-25-21. Avery Kelly also had nine kills for the Maroons. For Dillon, Jessalyn Zimmerman had 11 kills and Charli Hazelbaker added 10. 

Maddalena Margini led her team with 16 kills, and Cassi Kopsa added 23 digs and three aces as Stevensville slipped past Whitefish 26-24, 20-25, 25-23, 25-20. Kaya Moore had 14 kills, Mikenna Ells 23 assists and Luci Ridgeway 31 digs for the Bulldogs. 

• In a marathon, Dillon outlasted Libby 21-25, 25-19, 25-18, 19-25, 15-9 behind Josey Jones' 11 kills, 15 digs and four aces, along with 11 kills, 14 digs and two blocks from Ainsley Shipman and 37 assists, 17 digs and three aces from Madi Ruegsegger. Mackenzie Proffitt had 13 kills and five blocks, and Kylee Quinn 34 assists and 11 digs for the Loggers. 

Class B

Southern B

• Huntley Project lost a rare set, but the Red Devils kept their season perfect with a 21-25, 25-14, 25-18, 25-12 victory over Joliet behind 16 kills and two aces from Emily Poole to advance to the title match Saturday. Addy Hultgren added 38 assists and 22 digs for Project. The Red Devils will face the winner of Saturday morning's match between Townsend -- a 3-1 winner over Baker in Friday's later match -- and Joliet. 

Becca Page had eight kills, Taylor Noyes piched in with all 29 of Townsend's assists and Peyton Vogl had nine blocks as the Bulldogs stayed alive with a 25-17, 25-17, 16-25, 25-15 conquest of Manhattan. Anna Berg had four of Townsend's eight aces.  

Katie Wang and Peyton Janeway each had six kills, and Shelby Moore had three blocks and three aces for Baker in a 25-16, 25-21, 25-23 elimination win over Colstrip. The Fillies received six kills and 123 assits from Kya Egan, and six kills and three blocks from Addy Casterline

• Manhattan stayed alive with a 25-13, 23-25, 25-20, 25-23 win over Jefferson in a morning elimination match. Dakota Edmisten had 10 kills and 16 digs, and Hope Dobyns added five blocks for Jefferson. No individual statistics were available for Manhattan.

Katie Wang was the star with 10 kills, five blocks and three aces as Baker advanced with a 26-24, 15-25, 25-18, 25-23 win over Forsyth. Lindsey Hein had 23 kills, four aces and the only block for the Dogies. 

Northern B

• Glasgow regrouped from an early loss to trip Fairfield 21-25, 25-19, 25-22, 25-17 and secure a Class B state tournament berth for the first time in nine years. The Scotties play Shelby on Saturday morning for the right to meet Choteau for the divisional title. 

• Choteau stayed perfect and advanced to the title match with a 22-25, 25-13, 25-14, 25-12 win over Shelby behind 34 kills, nine blocks and 70 aces. The Coyotes had 25 kills and 66 aces.

• Fairfield fell behind after one set but used 50 aces and 24 kills to slip past Great Falls Central 23-25, 25-16, 25-16, 25-23. Central had 20 kills and 46 aces. 

• Glasgow stayed alive with a 25-13, 25-11, 25-6 sweep of Malta. The Scotties had 30 kills, 46 aces and 23 assists. Malta had 10 kills and 34 aces.  

• Great Falls Central cruised past Wolf Point 25-10, 25-22, 25-21 behind 25 kills, 10 blocks and 15 aces. The Wolves had 15 kills of their own, plus 24 aces and three blocks.

• Malta advanced with a 26-24, 26-28, 10-25, 25-16, 15-11 comeback win over Harlem thanks to 38 kills, four blocks and 120 aces. The Wildcats had 30 kills and 100 aces. 

Note: No individual statistics were provided from Northern B.

Western B

• Anaconda coasted past Deer Lodge 25-12, 25-21, 25-14 to move into a Saturday morning showdown with Thompson Falls for the right to meet Florence in at least one championship match. Aubrey Tuss led the Copperheads in kills, Mia Sullivan in blocks and Macy Matosich in assists. Jordan Smith had had four kills and two aces, and Skyla Piersen three blocks and two aces for the Wardens. 

Sarah Hopcroft pounded 16 kills, Halle Christopherson contributed 21 assists and three aces, and Emma Stensrud added four blocks and three aces to lead Florence into the title match with a 14-25, 25-13, 25-21, 25-10 rolling of Thompson Falls. Scarlette Schwindt came up big for the Bluehawks with 12 kills, seven digs and five aces, and Belle Cooper had 11 kills and two blocks. 

• Anaconda had 34 kills, 8.5 blocks and 10 aces in defeating Missoula Loyola 25-18, 25-21, 25-21; no individual statistics were available. Laney Denning topped the Breakers with 12 kills and two aces, and Brooke Twite and Sam Clevenger each compiled 20 digs.  

• In a hotly contested marathon, Marion Jones had 20 kills and Amy Fjell added 33 assists and three blocks to lead Deer Lodge past Eureka 24-26, 28-26, 25-19, 26-28, 15-13. Eureka kept it close with 11 kills and three aces from Michael Shea, nine kills and 21 digs from Maggie Graves and 31 assists and five blocks by Avory Escobar

Sam Clevenger led with nine kills and three aces, and Laney Denning offered nine kills and 24 digs as Missoula Loyola had little trouble with Bigfork 25-20, 25-21, 25-15 in a morning elimination match. Aubrey Halvorson topped Bigfork with nine assists and six kills. 

Jordan Smith had 13 kills and 12 digs, and Marion Jones added nine kills as Deer Lodge staved off elimination with a marathon 20-25, 25-19, 33-31, 22-25, 15-13 slugfest win over St. Ignatius. Sydney Brander had 21 kills and Karolyna Buck 16 more for Mission, which also received 49 assists and three blocks from Hunter Eichert

Class C

Eastern C

Jenna Rust had a huge night with 33 of her team's 47 kills and nine of 17 blocks to carry Westby-Grenora over Wibaux 23-25, 25-19, 25-23, 25-13 to advance to a meeting Saturday morning against Fairview for the right to face Plentywood in the title match. Elizabeth Field had 43 of the Thunder's 46 assists. Marni Schieffer had another big game for the Longhorns with 23 kills, 11 digs and four blocks, and Layni Schieffer contributed 11 digs. 

Donn Longan and Liv Wangerin were a dynamic duo with 23 and 17 kills, and Wangerin also added 16 digs and three aces to lead Plentywood into Saturday's championship match with a 21-25, 25-23, 25-23, 25-8 victory over Fairview. Longan also provided seven aces and Alyssa Hurst had three of the Wildcats' four blocks. Jadyn Gackle topped Fairview with 10 kills and 16 digs, and Macy Seadeek contributed seven kills and 17 digs.  

Marni Schieffer was the star with 21 kills, 16 digs and two aces, and Layne Schieffer helped with 43 asists and two blocks to carry Wibaux over Saco-Whitewater-Hinsdale 23-25, 25-14, 25-21, 25-15. Kia Wasson was North Country's leader with 11 kills, 21 digs and two blocks.  

Jenna Rust came up big with 26 kills and four aces, and Elizabeth Field had 34 of Westby-Grenora's 35 assists as the Thunder outlasted Ekalaka 25-15, 25-14, 18-25, 24-26, 15-4. Hannah LaBree had 13 kills and three aces, and Kenzie Tooke had two of Ekalaka's three blocks. 

Marni Schieffer came up big with 26 of Wibaux's 34 kills, Layni Schieffer added 31 assists and Madison Bakken had three aces and a block in the Longhorns' 25-11, 25-17, 25-15 sweep of Jordan. Lindsay Lawrence had seven kills, and Lacey Lawrence added 14 assists and two aces for the Mustangs. 

Kenzie Tooke had 12 kills and a block, Hannah LaBree had 22 assists and three aces, and Whitney Kittlemann added 21 assists and two aces as Ekalaka outlasted Scobey 25-21, 14-25, 25-7, 15-25, 15-13. Kortney Nelson was the all-round star for the Spartans with nine kills, 10 digs, seven blocks and four aces,  Gracee Lekvold added 16 assists and 20 digs, and Kylee Cook provided 13 kills. 

Southern C

• Balanced Roberts toppled Hobson-Moore-Judith Gap 25-13, 25-23, 25-17 behind nine kills from Mckenzie Pitts, 24 assists from Bentley Bertolino, 15 digs apiece from Emma DeVries and Makayla Pratt, and 3.5 blocks from Kimberly Bear. Tri-Cities was led by seven kills and seven blocks from Danielle Horan, 12 assists and two aces by Elizabeth Hickey, and seven kills from Dakota Auck.

• In a battle of big hitters, Bridger's Emily Adkins outdueled Roy-Winifred's Dyauni Boyce and the Scouts moved into the championship match with a 25-23, 25-17, 25-21 sweep of the Outlaws. Adkins had 16 kills, nine assists, 17 digs and three aces. Boyce countered with seven kills, 19 digs, four blocks and three aces to lead Roy-Winifred in four of five statistical categories.

Danielle Horan led with 11 kills and four blocks, and Elizabeth Hickey had all 30 of her team's assists and five blocks to power Hobson-Moore-Judith Gap over Melstone 26-24, 25-15, 23-25, 25-15 in an elimination match. Melstone was led by 11 kills and two aces from Draya Wacker, 16 assists and 19 digs by Koye Rindal, and 15 digs and six assists from Kayla Kombol.

Mckenzie Pitts and Kimberly Bear each had 19 kills, and Emma DeVries added 16 digs and two blocks as Roberts held off Reed Point-Rapelje 26-24, 25-16, 24-26, 25-15. The Renegades were led by Carlee Blodgett's 14 kills, 14 digs and nine blocks. 

Danielle Horan had a trifecta with nine kills, three blocks and three aces, and Allison Wertheimer chipped in with eight digs and four aces for Hobson-Moore-Judith Gap in a 25-21, 25-7, 25-17 sweep of Absarokee. Kaiya Holmquist had all 10 of the Huskies' assists and Paige Steffenson had three aces.

Carlee Blodgett had a big morning with 26 kills, 16 digs and three aces to help Reed Point-Rapelje overcome Harlowton-Ryegate 23-25, 25-18, 22-25, 25-9, 15-12. Karlie Lane led the Engineers with 19 kills and 23 digs, Alexis Hagl added 17 assists and two aces and Keeley Chrest provided 18 assists, 15 digs and two aces. 

Northern C

• Fort Benton secured a berth to state and gained a spot in the championship match by outlasting Belt 25-20, 21-25, 15-25, 25-15, 15-11 once again. The Longhorns prevailed behind the 15 kills of McKenzie Clark. Teammate Maci Molinario contributed a double-double of 20 assists and 14 digs. Kyelie Marquis led Belt with 24 kills. The Huskies also received 30 assists, 13 digs and six aces from Kolby Pimperton

• North Star eliminated Geraldine-Highwood with a 25-19, 25-23, 15-25, 25-11 win. For the Knights, Olivia King led all players with 13 kills and six aces, and she added 10 digs. Kenidee Worley dished out a match-high 27 assists, Shayla Borlaug had 15 digs and Saige O’Neil added 11 kills and four aces. For the Rivals, Ellie Meeks had seven kills, 16 digs and nine assists, and Azzie Rowland added seven kills and three aces. 

Kyelie Marquis led with 14 kills and four aces, and Kolby Pimperton had 38 of Belt's 42 assists as the Huskies steamrolled Simms 25-15, 25-9, 26-24. Janessa Willekes had five kills and two aces, and Taylee Sawyer added 12 assists and two aces for Simms. 

McKenzie Clark came up big with 16 kills and four blocks, and McKenna Hanford contributed 20 assists and four aces to lift Fort Benton over Chinook 25-22, 25-13, 25-18. Ginger Hauer led the Sugarbeeters with 16 assists and 15 digs, and Delaney Kellam had seven kills. 

• Augusta kept its season alive with a 25-18, 27-25, 25-22 sweep of Power. The Elks had 35 kills and 12 aces. Power had 31 kills and 11 aces. No individual statistics were provided. 

Western C

Carlee Fryberger was tops with 20 kills and an ace, Connor Fryberger and Kassidi Cox split Charlo's 40 assists right down the middle, and Bella Hawk had four blocks as the Vikings moved into Saturday morning action against Gardiner with a 25-20, 25-19, 25-21 sweep of Hot Springs. The Charlo-Gardiner winner will meet Manhattan Christian at least once for the crown. Katelyn Christensen and McKennzie Cannon had seven kills apiece for Hot Springs, and Christensen had seven blocks. Sydney Jackson added 14 assists and two aces. 

Kiersten Vankirk led with 13 kills, and Taylor Devries added 31 assists and a team-high four aces as district champion Manhattan Christian remained unbeaten with a 25-18, 20-25, 21-25, 25-18 win over longtime district power Gardiner. Eliana Kuperus chipped in with four blocks for the Eagles. The Bruins received 13 kills, a block and an ace from Josie Thomas, and 37 assists and an ace from Chase Cunningham

• Carlee Fryberger pounded 13 kills and added four aces, and Conner Fryberger contributed 16 assists to lift Charlo to a 25-20, 25-21, 25-21 sweep of Ennis to stay alive. The Mustangs received 19 assists from Riley Robinson, 5.5 blocks from Shelbey Klein and three aces from Olivia Lohrenz

McKenzie Cannon was tops with nine kills, and Sydney Jackson had an all-round effort with 19 assists, four digs and five aces to lead Hot Springs to a 25-22, 25-6, 25-21 sweep of Philipsburg. Asha Comings topped the Prospectors with five kills and seven digs.

Liev Smith led with 12 kills, Connor Fryber added 20 assists and Kira McPhail had all four of her team's blocks as Charlo swept past Alberton-Superior 25-11, 25-6, 25-9. No statistics were available for Clark Fork. 

Katelyn Christensen had five kills and five blocks, and Sydney Jackson added 23 assists and two aces for Hot Springs in a 26-24, 25-14, 25-9 sweep of Valley Christian. Ellie Hover had seven kills and an ace for Christian.

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