Laurel hosts Whitefish in championship match

Whitefish begins to celebrate after the final whistle is blown Saturday in the Bulldogs' 4-0 win over Laurel. It is Whitefish's second consecutive crown.

Editor's note: Will be updated as results continue to arrive.


Class AA playoffs

Junior Bergen and Oran Nash-Bergen each scored two touchdowns as Billings Senior (5-4) overcame an early deficit to defeat Missoula Hellgate 41-13 in a first-round game at Wendy's Field at Daylis Stadium. After spotting Hellgate (3-6) a 7-0 lead early in the first quarter, Senior scored 34 unanswered points. Junior Bergen had touchdown runs of 69 and 18 yards, and Oran Nash-Bergen had scoring runs of 17 and 12. Julian Federico and Alyas Wright also ran for Bronc scores. Wright finished with 105 yards rushing on 26 carries and Junior Bergen had 10 catches for 108 yards. Knights quarterback Rollie Worster threw touchdown passes of 15 and 13 yards to Ian Finch and Brandon Coladonato.  

Class A playoffs

• Frenchtown running back Jace Klucewich scord three touchdowns, including runs of 88 and 49 yards, as the Broncs dominated Whitefish 34-7. Klucewich opened with his 49-yarder and scored from a yard out in the second quarter for a 13-7 halftime lead. Whitefish's Fynn Ridgeway had a 14-yard completion to Bodi Smith for the team's only touchdown.

• Libby advanced with a 49-28 home win over Butte Central behind three Logger touchdowns in the second quarter, giving the team a 28-14 halftime lead. Dawson Young ran for four touchdowns for Libby.

Mason Dionne scored the winning touchdown with 19 seconds remaining as Havre edged Lewistown 14-13. Moments later, teammate Joey Byrd ended the game with an interception.

Class B playoffs

• In the game of the day, Trey Johannes scored from 3 yards out -- his fourth TD of the afternoon -- to cap a wild fourth quarter and give No. 9 Columbus a 28-24 win over No. 10 Glasgow. The Scotties had taken a brief lead on a 10-yard run by Jesse Lee, his second score of the day. That came after back-to-back 5-yard scoring rambles by Johannes. Glasgow led 8-0 aft halftime before the scoring heated up in the second half, beginning with the first of three 5-yard scoring runs for Johannes. 

Rex Williamson scored two touchdowns, and Kooper Oxarart ran for one and threw for another as No. 6 Malta shut down Jefferson for a 26-7 win. Williamson began the scoring with a 1-yard run in the first quarter and finished it from 2 yards away in the fourth. Oxarat connected with Kanyon Stiles from 15 yards out in the second quarter and followed with a 6-yard score before halftime for a 20-0 lead. Joey Visser's 26-yard reception from Braden Morris in the third quarter was Jefferson's only score.

Finnegan Davis scored two touchdowns and No. 3 Red Lodge (9-0) received a scare from Bigfork before prevailing 28-25. The Rams trailed 19-14 in the first quarter after rushing TDs from 17 and 5 yards out by Levi Taylor. A 1-yard run by Austin Heimer appeared to put Red Lodge safely ahead in the fourth quarter, but an 89-yard kick return by Kainin Lafontaine brought the Vikings within three.

• No. 2 Eureka rushed for 468 yards in a 65-24 win over visiting Baker. Chet McCully had the bulk of those yards for the Lions (9-0), carrying 18 times for 331 yards and five touchdowns. Jake Kindel added 74 yards on seven carries and scored three touchdowns. Jory Miller led Baker with 96 yards rushing on 21 carries and added a score on a 75-yard kickoff return.

• No. 7 Missoula Loyola used a strong defensive effort and jumped on No. 8 Huntley Project for two touchdowns in the first quarter for a 20-0 win. Nick Mitzel scored the two first-quarter touchdowns and finished with 130 yards rushing on 24 carries. Teammate Nolan Iverson scored in the fourth quarter and finished with 113 yards rushing on 18 totes. Defensive end Izaac Sessums was credited with six sacks. 

• Quarterback Keeley Bake had a hand in four touchdowns as undefeated and top-ranked Fairfield overwhelmed Townsend 41-13. Bake's TDs included a 74-yard romp to paydirt during the first quarter. The Eagles, who led 14-0 at halftime, are 9-0. The Bulldogs finished 5-4.

• Running back Garrit Weeda ran for three touchdowns in helping No. 4 Manhattan stay undefeated with a 41-0 blanking of Cut Bank. The Tigers led 34-0 by intermission.

• In its first home playoff game in 23 years, No. 5 Florence overwhelmed Shepherd 59-6 behind seven turnovers and the play of senior quarterback Colby Kohlman. On Florence's first play from scrimmage, Kohlman went 47 yards for a touchdown -- the first of his three 40-plus-yard TD runs. He also threw three touchdowns and added an interception from the safety position, one of five picks for the Falcons. Zaylen Munn's 85-yard kick return in the first quarter accounted for Shepherd's (4-5) only scoring, making it just a 7-6 Florence lead less than a minute into the game.

8-Man playoffs

• Jace Thompson rushed for 200 yards and scored six touchdowns to lead second-ranked and unbeaten Fort Benton (9-0) to a 62-0 romp over Culbertson. Thompson hit paydirt on runs of 30, 47, 40, 30, 14 and 51 yards as the Longhorns built a 46-0 halftime lead. Garrett Diekhans opened the scoring with a 15-yard run and later tossed a 23-yard scoring strike to his brother Hayden Diekhans. Culbertson’s Jacob Crowder led his team's defensive attack with 7.5 tackles.

Tucker Johnstone's 26-yard interception return for a score in the fourth quarter provided some separation and gave No. 8 Park City a tight 34-24 back-and-forth win over No. 5 St. Ignatius. The Panthers had taken the lead 27-24 on a 22-yard pass from Carson Baker to James Wetmore earlier in the quarter. St. Ignatius was strong early as Kellen McClure found Jedi Christy for 5- and 51-yard scoring passes and Troy Matt raced to the end zone from 60 yards away for an 18-6 lead. Baker began Park City's comeback with a 1-yard run and Garrett Zimdars provided a brief lead with an 8-yard score, his second of the day. But Mission went back ahead in the third quarter on Isaac Dumontier's 34-yard dash.

Bryan Mask threw five touchdown passes -- two apiece to Kyler Francis and Isaiah Kovalsky -- and No. 3 Alberton-Superior scored 30 unanswered points in the first quarter en route to a 58-21 pasting of Shelby. Mask also connected from 15 yards out with Jake Callaway, and Kovalsky also tossed a 23-yard scoring strike to Francis, his third TD. Trey Green helped pad the lead with TD runs of 3 and 44 yards for Clark Fork. Tabris Correa caught two scoring passes for Shelby, from 23 and 31 yards out.

Alex Schriver passed for three touchdowns and ran for two more, and Cody Asbeck scored three times as top-ranked Fairview overwhelmed Choteau 70-8. Schriver scored the game's first two TDs on the ground, from 72 and 7 yards out, and then connected with Braiden Taylor, Paul Hardy and Brady Buxbaum through the air. Asbeck scored from 43 and 25 yards out on the ground and added a 72-yard kick return to begin the second half to give Fairview a 56-0 lead. Kyler Crabtree's 7-yard run in the fourth quarter was the Bulldogs' only score. 

Jackson Malsam rushed for three touchdowns and Shane Girres threw for two and ran for another as No. 6 Great Falls Central rolled past Ekalaka 41-18. Malsam scored the game's two TDs, rushing from 2 and 1 yards out. He added a 53-yarder in the third quarter. Girres scored on a 26-yard run and tossed scoring passes of 15 yards to Nick Scott and 5 to Trevor Thompson

Kade Cutler's 5-yard run in the second overtime -- his sixth of the game -- was the difference as defending state champion Drummond-Philipsburg (Flint Creek) advanced to the quarterfinals with a 46-40 road win over No. 4 West Yellowstone. Cutler scored on a 20-yard run in the first OT but West's Miguel Salinas knotted the score with a 10-yard run of his own. Salinas had sent the game into the extra sessions with a 38-yard run at the end of the fourth quarter, his third TD of the afternoon. Cutler's other scores were from 6, 1, 33 and 3 yards, and he also threw a 27-yard scoring strike to Daniel Brabender. Mac Hauck threw three TD passes for the Wolverines, two to Sam Coffin.

• In the other 8-Man game, Belt trounced Scobey 70-34.

6-Man playoffs

• Westby-Grenora’s Ridge Sargent scored three touchdowns and teammate Jared Muller ran for two more as the eighth-ranked Thunder stunned No. 4 Power-Dutton-Brady 50-0. Sargent scored three consecutive TDs, from 49, 5 and 17 yards. Muller's came from 2 and 10 yards out. Darian Holecek broke the ice for Westby-Grenora with a 3-yard scoring run as the Thunder built a 22-0 first-quarter lead.

Tyler Fordyce ran for two touchdowns and threw for two more, including the game-clincher to Anthony DeMars, and Bobo Adorni rushed for two scores to lead Roy-Winifred past No. 9 Noxon 38-29 in a first-round game. Noxon had pulled within 32-29 on a 30-yard pass from Rylan Weltz to Jared Webley in the fourth quarter, but Roy-Winifred responded with Fordyce's 8-yard toss to DeMars to seal it. Fordyce's runs both went for 30 yards and Adorni scored from 46 and 2 yards out. Weltz and Webley also connected one other team, with Webley throwing and Weltz catching from 51 yards. Weltz also had a 7-yard pass to Derreck Christensen.

• It was a big day again for the Murnion family as Edward Murnion ran for three scores and threw for another, and cousin Keenan Murnion scored three times and passed for a fourth as defending state runner-up and third-ranked Jordan raced past North Star 51-6. Edward Murnion's scoring runs covered 1, 10 and 2 yards, and he threw a 54-yard pass to Keenan to close the scoring. Keenan had runs of 53 and 4 yards and threw a 3-yarder to Ben McRae. Caden Rettig's 31-yard pass from Garret Spicher accounted for North Star's only points. 

Wyatt Davis' 18-yard run in the fourth quarter broke a tie as defending state champion and No. 5 Wibaux survived a scare from No. 10 Denton-Geyser-Stanford, 26-18. The Longhorns led 18-6 at halftime after TD runs of 8 yards by Gavin Nelson and 49 by Tel Lunde plus a safety, but DGS rallied. Dylan Taylor scored his second and third touchdowns, both via the air from 10 and 16 yards out, to knot the game at 16-all in the fourth quarter. 

Brandon Knudsen was responsible for six touchdowns in No. 2 Hot Springs' 57-18 win over visiting Harlowton. Knudsen, who ran for 125 yards and passed for 163, scored on runs of 28, 12 and 23 yards, added a 72-yard punt return for a score, and tossed scoring strikes of 4 yards to Kyle Lawson and 50 yards to Jack McAllister. Lawson had nine catches for 68 yards and McAllister added 18 tackles and an interception for the Savage Heat (10-0). Johnny Mysse scored all three TDs for Harlowton, one on a 68-yard kickoff return. 

• In other 6-Man action, Shields Valley downed Geraldine-Highwood 59-38, No. 1 Big Sandy routed Richey-Lambert 51-16 and Bridger outlasted White Sulphur Springs 43-41 in a night game. 


Class AA Boys

Dane Becker's penalty kick in the 44th minute proved to be the difference as Missoula Hellgate built a two-goal lead and held on for a 2-1 victory over Bozeman and the state championship. Josef Fields' goal five minutes later brought the Hawks within 2-1, but despite several chances -- including a shot off the post -- Bozeman couldn't get the equalizer. Reggie Duce opened the scoring for the Knights at the 17th minute. It is Hellgate's fourth crown in five years.  

Class A Boys

• Whitefish defeated Laurel 4-0 to capture its second straight state championship. Senior Ian Lacey scored the only goal of the first half before senior Casey Schneider, senior Sam Menicke and junior Joshua Gunderson found the back of the net in the second half. Schneider assisted Lacey's and Menicke's goals. The Bulldogs (15-0-0) haven’t lost in 30 matches. The Locomotives finished the season with a 12-3-0 record.

Class AA Girls

Chloe Davies' goal in the 51st minute off an assist from Jillian Hust was all Billings West needed for a 1-0 victory over defending state champion Billings Skyview. The Falcons had numerous scoring chances in the second half, but Kendell Ellis was stout in goal for the Golden Bears. 

Class A Girls

• Mya Maack and Maeson Cotter scored goals to help the Laurel Locomotives regain the championship with a 2-0 win over defending champion Billings Central. It’s the second title in three years for the Locomotives, who have played in six consecutive state title matches. Laurel and Billings Central have met for the crown each of the past five seasons. Morgan Maack assisted on sister Mya’s goal in the first half. Cotter scored early in the second half on an assist by Allison Shovar.


Class AA

• Great Falls defeated Billings Skyview 25-19, 25-15, 22-25, 20-25, 15-12 as Malena Bruskotter had eight aces and 36 assists, and Kaitlyn Gilbert chipped in with 14 kills and 15 digs. The Falcons were led by Renzie Pond’s six aces and 15 digs, and Bella Bryan’s 29 assists and four blocks.

• Great Falls CMR’s Allie Olsen had 25 Kills and four blocks, and teammate Tennie Hiller had a team-high 33 assists to defeat Billings Senior in straight sets, 25-10, 25-20, 25-22. Emma Hanson had two aces, seven digs and seven kills, and Bailey King had five blocks and seven kills for the Broncs.

Shauna Stene had 19 kills and four blocks to help Billings West defeat Belgrade 26-24, 20-25, 25-19, 25-14 in an Eastern AA match. The Golden Bears (26-9) served 13 aces, led by Megan Benton’s seven. Molly Nault finished with 27 digs and Taylor Graham finished with 32 assists and 12 digs. Belgrade stats were not available.

Class A

Taylor Stewart put down 16 kills and Jenna Baxter had 34 of her team's 36 assists in Sidney's 18-25, 25-14, 25-22, 25-20 victory over Hardin. Cassidy Larson had five blocks to lead the Eagles.

• Columbia Falls downed Browning in three sets, 25-10, 25-17, 25-13 as Kiera Brown led the Wildkats with 10 kills. Kamber Brown dished out 21 assists. Gianna Vickers was the leader for the Indians, finishing with five kills, two aces and seven digs.

• Corvallis swept Frenchtown 25-16, 25-8, 25-8 to move to 12-1 on the season as the Blue Devils got 10 kills and nine digs from Madeline Gilder as well as 21 assists from Hannah MartinRylee Belcourt led the Broncs with two kills and two aces.

Class B

District 1B

• Host Choteau went back-to-back against Shelby for the district crown, winning 25-9, 25-23, 25-12 in the first championship and then turning around and downing the Coyotes 25-19, 25-27, 25-20, 25-20 behind 47 team kills. Shelby had defeated Choteau on Friday to drop the Bulldogs into the loser-out rounds. Choteau defeated Fairfield 25-10, 25-17, 25-16 in the third-place match to earn a berth in the finals.

District 2B

• Host Glasgow captured the title with a 25-11, 25-16, 15-25, 25-16 verdict over Harlem. Taylor Pederson's eight kills and the five blocks provided by Laura Ross helped highlight the Scotties' victory. Anika Peters contributed four aces for Glasgow, which also received 25 assists from Rachelle Glaser and 15 digs from Blair Westby. Harlem was led by the nine kills of Aspen Baker and Nevaeh Spotted Eagle's 19 digs. It is Glasgow's 17th district title in 28 years of competing in Class B. 

• Harlem ousted Wolf Point 25-17, 25-22, 25-22 in the third-place match. Aspen Baker had 10 kills and two blocks for the victors. Teammate Aria Owens come up with nine aces. Wolf Point got seven kills and four blocks from Tori Nygard.

District 4B

Emily Poole and Alana Graves shared honors with 13 kills apiece, and Addy Hultgren set the table again with 36 assists and 19 digs as Huntley Project completed its perfect run through the district with a 25-23, 25-22, 25-11 victory over Joliet in the title match. Makenna Bushman had eight kills and two blocks, and Shayla Webber was tops with 15 assists and 15 digs. 

Joelle Luoma and Skyler Wright tied with eight kills each, and Shayla Webber provided 14 assists and 15 digs as Joliet earned another shot at the championship by sweeping Shepherd 25-22, 25-16, 25-11 in the third-place game. Aubrey Allison's nine kills led Shepherd, which also received 12 assists and 10 digs from Kylee Coates

Emily Poole led all players with 13 kills, and Addy Hultgren contributed 32 assists and 14 digs as unbeaten Huntley Project took a 25-15, 25-15, 25-16 semifinal win over Joliet. Makenna Bushman had nine of the J-Hawks' 21 kills, and Shayla Webber chipped in with 17 digs and nine assists. 

Aubrey Allison had 16 kills and 25 of Shepherd's 100 digs, and Kylee Coates pitched in with 37 assists as Shepherd outlasted Roundup 17-25, 25-14, 18-25, 25-21, 15-7 in an early morning match. Chloe Cota had 18 of Roundup's 40 kills, and Blythe Sealey added 33 assists and two aces. 

District 6B

Sarah Hopcroft's nine kills and three aces led the way, and Halle Christopherson provided 12 assists to lead Florence to the district championship with ha 25-14, 25-21, 25-7 sweep of Anaconda. Kolbi Wood led with 14 digs, and Emily Kinnaman and Emma Stensrud each also had three aces for the Falcons.

Sam Clevenger and Laney Denning had eight kills apiece, and Denning added 17 digs and three aces for Missoula Loyola in its 25-19, 25-16, 29-27 win for third place over Deer Lodge. Natalie Clevenger provided key support with 10 assists and four blocks, and Alexis Cooney also had four blocks for the Breakers. Jordan Smith led with eight kills, Skyla Pierson had three blocks and Rachel Nicholson added three aces for the Wardens. 

Sarah Hopcroft was tops with 13 kills, and Halle Christopherson contributed 16 assists and three aces for Florence in a 25-7, 25-16, 25-19 romp over Deer Lodge. Emma Stensrud had three of the Falcons' four blocks. Amy Fjell led the Wardens with three kills, 10 assists and two blocks. 

District 7B

• Thompson Falls downed Eureka 25-22, 25-19, 27-25 to win the four-team district championship. The Bluehawks toppled St. Ignatius, 27-25, 27-16, 19-25, 25-17 in the semifinals. Eureka advanced with a 25-11, 25-15, 23-25, 25-12 win over Bigfork. 

Class C

District 1C

• Plentywood cruised to the district crown by rolling past Westby-Grenora for the second time Saturday, 25-19, 25-17, 25-23. Earlier in the day, the Wildcats also swept the Thunder 25-17, 25-19, 25-19. Westby-Grenora had made it to the final by toppling Saco-Whitewater-Hinsdale 23-25, 25-19, 25-22, 25-20. Fairview finished fourth and Scobey fifth.

District 4C

Jenna Kallevig led with 10 kills and 11 digs, and Emily Adkins added eight kills, 13 assists and three aces to power Bridger to a 25-12, 25-11, 25-18 sweep of Roberts and the district championship. Kyra Kroll had 13 digs for the Scouts. McKenzie Pitts provided eight kills and a block, and Bentley Bertolino had all of the Roberts' 19 assists.

Kimberly Bear pounded 16 kills, Bentley Bertolino had all 26 of her team's assists and Grayce Payovich and MaKayla Pratt each had four kills as Roberts swept Reed Point-Rapelje 25-15, 25-13, 25-21 in the third-place game. Carlee Blodgett had 11 kills and five digs, and Lily Herzog added three blocks for the Renegades.  

District 5C

Dyauni Boyce pounded 10 kills and added three blocks, and Olivia Geer contributed 14 digs and two aces as Roy-Winifred rolled to the district crown with a 25-19, 25-15, 25-15 thumping of Melstone. Cassie Smith had 30 of Roy-Winifred's 33 assists. Draya Wacker led Melstone with 10 kills, 16 digs and an ace, and Koye Rindal helped with seven kills, nine assists and 11 digs. 

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