BOZEMAN — Billings Central advances to Thursday night's quarterfinal round of the State A volleyball tournament inside Brick Breeden Fieldhouse in Bozeman with a four-set win over Western A champion Polson.
The Rams will face Eastern A foe Havre, which swept its way past Hamilton in the opening round.
Laurel also moved on to the quarterfinals with a four-set victory over Stevensville in Thursday's first round. Hardin also won with a sweep over Ronan to advance to face Laurel and make it an All-Eastern A quarterfinal round.
Billings Central 3, Polson 1
Billings Central entered this weekend as the Eastern A's No. 4 seed, and even had to play its way into the tournament on Wednesday night with a victory over Corvallis in Livingston, but the defending champion Rams flexed their muscle with a four-set win over Western A divisional champion Polson.
Central defeated the Pirates 25-9, 25-16, 17-25, 25-17 to advance to Thursday night's quarterfinals. Ruby Gray led Central with a pair of aces and 12 kills, while Ally Foster had 28 assists.
Havre 3, Hamilton 0
Havre set up a date with Billings Central in Thursday evening's quarterfinal round after a sweep of Hamilton, 25-17, 25-12, 25-13.
The Blue Ponies were led by Avery Carlson, who had 11 kills and a pair of aces, and Molly Huse who had 26 assists. Carlson adn Lizzi Haney each had 11 assists.
Hamilton was led by Taryn Searle's 14 kills.
Laurel 3, Stevensville 1
Laurel dropped the first set but surged to a 26-28, 26-24, 25-20, 25-20 win in the opening round. It marked the Locomotives' first victory at state since 2012.
Daeja Fike had 10 kill and Sannah Windy Boy added nine for the Locomotives. Emma Timm had 23 assist while Fike contributed 22 assists.
Stevi's Daphne Engel led al players with 17 kills.
Hardin 3, Ronan 0
Makenna Torske's 10 kills helped Hardin sweep Ronan 25-19, 25-15, 25-18 and advance to the quarterfinal round with its Eastern A counterparts. Torske also had four stuff blocks for the Bulldogs, while teammate Macy Uffelman led with 12 digs.
Leina Ulutoa had 16 kills and 15 digs to lead Ronan.