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Missoula Sentinel forces six turnovers, blows past Kalispell Flathead

Eliza Bentler and Skyleigh Thompson.jpg
Posted at 12:06 AM, Sep 15, 2023

MISSOULA — In Thursday night lights action in Missoula, the Missoula Sentinel Spartans jumped all over the Kalispell Flathead Braves as Sentinel won 46-7 to improve to 3-1 on the season.

Flathead fell to 1-3 with the loss.

The Spartans forced six turnovers in the game to separate themselves from the Braves. Jaxon Allery had a pair of them in the first half, including a pick-6 in the second quarter that gave Sentinel a 14-0 lead.

Brady Kolendich also had a first-half interception, while Sam Matosich and Talan Sunderland each picked off passes in the third quarter. Ryan Haidle also forced a fumble that Hunter Sellers recovered as the Spartan defense was everywhere making life difficult for Flathead any time they got anything going.

Riley Allen scored a pair of rushing touchdowns for Sentinel, including the game's first score, and then again in the third quarter after Matosich's interception that made it 21-0. Matt Van Horn then scored on a sweep after the fumble recovery to continue to balloon Sentinel's lead.

Cashing in the turnovers was fruitful for Sentinel, and after Sunderland's pick, Allen found Danny Sirmon through the air for a 15-yard touchdown to make it 33-0 as Sentinel continued to run away.

Brady Whitman also scored for Sentinel in the fourth quarter while Rudy Hess connected with Giovanni Shepherd for the game's final score. Flathead's lone touchdown came from Brett Pesola who found Stephen Riley for a 21-yard scoring connection.

Sentinel racked up 303 total yards while holding Flathead to 207. Allen finished 17 for 26 in the game for 138 yards, two touchdowns and an interception plus two more scores on the ground. On top of his two interceptions on defense, Allery led Sentinel in receiving yards with 41 on three catches while Grady Walker caught seven passes for 34 yards. Jace Koshatka led Sentinel on the ground with 38 rushing yards while Sellers, who had Sentinel's recovered fumble, also had a sack in the game.

Brody Thornsberry led Flathead with four catches for 90 yards while Noah Sonju had Flathead's lone interception.