BILLINGS — Billings Central and Laurel left no doubt Thursday afternoon, leading wire to wire in first-round wins at the Eastern A boys basketball divisional tournament at First Interstate Arena.
Billings Central 66, Lewistown 43
Central jumped out to an 11-1 lead in the first game of the day at First Interstate Arena and never looked back in a 66-43 win over Lewistown.
Central led 19-9 after the first quarter and 38-20 at halftime, capped by a Charlie Parkan and-1 with 2.6 seconds left in the second. The Rams led by as many as 26 points in the fourth.
Gabriel Dos Santos and Brock Blatter led Central with 18 points each. Blatter added 11 rebounds for the double-double. Gage Clinton led the Eagles with 13.
Laurel 52, Miles City 37
In the day's second game, Miles City stayed within striking distance of Laurel into the third quarter, but a 9-0 run pushed the Locomotives' lead to double digits as they went on to a 52-37 win.
Laurel led 25-17 at half, but Miles City got as close as five early in the third. But Laurel closed the quarter with an 11-2 run to take a 38-24 lead into the fourth. The Cowboys never got within single digits again.
Colter Bales led Laurel with 14 points and 12 rebounds in the win. Logan Muri and Haden Warren led Miles City with eight points each.
Central and Laurel will face each other in the second Eastern A boys semifinal Friday at 5 p.m. Lewistown and Miles City fall into loser-out play.