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Western B boys: Florence to face Loyola in semis, Anaconda will meet Bigfork

Posted at 9:58 PM, Feb 23, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-23 23:58:36-05

ANACONDA — Both the Missoula Loyola and Florence-Carlton boys hung over 70 points against their opponents in the opening round of the Western B tournament on Thursday, but the Rams did it in much more dominant fashion.

Loyola, the top seed out of the District 6B, rolled to a 78-27 rout over fourth-seeded Thompson falls, setting the stage for a semifinal against a Falcons team that overcame an early deficit and eventually pulled away from Eureka for a 74-66 win.

In the Rams-Blue Hawks game, Ethan Stack paced Loyola with a game-high 29 points as the Rams built a 42-17 lead by halftime. Noah Haffey added 15 points for the Rams and Talen Reynolds scored 11.

In in the Falcons' win over Eureka, Patrick Duchien led the way with 22 points and Jesse Padilla had 21.

In the other quarterfinals, defending divisional champion Bigfork rolled past Arlee 71-58 and Anaconda used a late-go ahead three-pointer to outlast St. Ignatius 69-66.

The Vikings got 16 points from Nick Walker in its win over the Warriors, 11 from Bryce Gilliard and Eli Thorness.

In the Copperheads' victory over the Bulldogs, Anaconda watched a 15-points halftime lead evaporate and St. Ignatius' Cedrick McDonald — who was just activated to the Bulldogs' roster after participating in enough practices during the district tournament — hit a tying layup with just over 10 seconds remaining in the game.

Anaconda's Billy Farmer then drained a go-ahead three-pointer with about six seconds to pull out a last-second win. It was Farmer's only field goal of the game.

River Hurley led the Copperheads with 26 points and Wade DaHood added 10.

Loyola and Florence will tip off at 6:30 p.m. on Friday and Anaconda-Bigfork will follow at 8:15 p.m.