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Western B: Bigfork girls, Missoula Loyola boys storm to divisional titles

Posted at 10:42 PM, Feb 25, 2023

ANACONDA — The Western B determined who its No. 1 boys and girls teams will be at state, but the No. 2s remain to be determined.

The Bigfork girls and Missoula Loyola boys surged to runaway wins over the Breakers and Vikings in the divisional championships on Saturday to lock up top seeds while sending their opponents into win-or-go-home games.

The Loyola girls will now have to face Anaconda in a challenge game on Monday at the Snake Pit to determine who will get the second seed out of the Western B while the Bigfork boys will face St. Ignatius in another challenge game in Ronan.

Bigfork girls 63, Missoula Loyola 30

Unlike their first two games at the divisional tournament, it took the Valkyries more than a half to truly break away from its opponent. But Bigfork still found a way to turn its championship game into a rout.

Sophomore Braeden Gunlock poured in a game-high 21 points and her freshman sister added 14 as the Vikings led 25-17 at the half and then outscored the Breakers 38-13 after the break to defend their Western B title and head to the State B tournament with an unbeaten record and plenty of momentum.

Madison Chappuis added 11 points for Bigfork and Scout Nadeau had 9.

Missoula Loyola boys 67, Bigfork 37

After leading the Vikings by just 8 points at halftime, Missoula Loyola's Ethan Stack and the Rams were determined to make the Vikings "roll on their backs."

They did just that.

Loyola held the defending Western B champions to 11 second-half points as the Rams rolled to a blowout win to lock up a top seed at state.

Stack and Raef Konzen each scored 16 points for Loyola, Reynolds Johnston added 12 and Jack Clevenger scored 10 to give the Rams four players in double digits.

Isak Epperly led the Vikings with 10 points.