High School SportsHigh School Girls Basketball


Southern B girls: No suspense as Baker, Huntley Project roll in semifinals

Posted at 9:55 PM, Mar 01, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-02 23:52:19-05

BILLINGS — The semifinal round Friday at the Southern B girls divisional basketball tournament featured no suspense as District 3B rivals Baker and Huntley Project cruised into the championship game.

Baker ran past Jefferson 66-35 in the first semifinal game and Project routed Ennis 67-41, setting up a rivalry clash — and another matchup between stars Madison O'Connor and Paige Lofing — to decide the divisional crown Saturday.

It will mark the fourth time this season the teams will play: The Spartans and Red Devils split two regular-season games, and Project won the district title over Baker in Colstrip on Feb. 17. The teams also met at the divisional and state tourneys last season.

Baker 66, Jefferson 35

O'Connor didn't need to have a 30-point night for Baker to ease past Jefferson in the night's first semifinal.

O'Connor had 16 points and four assists, and teammate Emily Enos cashed four 3-pointers and finished with 14 points as the Spartans advanced to the divisional championship game and earned a berth to next week's state tournament.

Avery O'Connor added nine points and both Saraya Afrank and Hope Gonsioroski put in seven points for Baker. Gonsioroski also had six rebounds.

Jefferson, which moved into the loser-out bracket Saturday, was led by Ryian Eveland's 10 points. Cameron Toney finished with five points and seven rebounds. Melanie Zitnik had six points. The Panthers turned the ball over 29 times, which led to 22 Baker points on the other end.

Southern B Girls: Baker, Huntley Project roll into championship

Huntley Project 67, Ennis 41

Perimeter shooting was the catalyst early for the Red Devils, who led by 17 at the end of the first quarter and by halftime had made 9 of 16 3-point attempts. Lofing hit 3 first-quarter 3s and finished the game with 21 points and 10 rebounds.

Sannah Windy Boy added 17 points and nine rebounds for Huntley Project and Ivy Grimsrud had 11 points and four assists.

Project scored 24 points off of 27 Ennis turnovers, and led by as many as 27 points.

Ennis, which now must stay alive in loser-out play, got 22 points from Mariso Snider, including six 3s. Snider also had nine rebounds. Teammate Megan Knack had 10 points and nine rebounds.

Friday loser-out scores

Lodge Grass 53, Columbus 45

Big Timber 54, Manhattan 41