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Eastern AA boys: Billings Senior shocks Billings West in 1st round

Posted at 9:00 PM, Feb 28, 2019

GREAT FALLS – Great Falls CMR defeated Billings Skyview 41-39 to set up an Eastern AA boys basketball divisional semifinal with Great Falls High Friday at 5 p.m.

Bozeman defeated Butte 71-28 to advance to the Eastern AA semis where it will face Billings Senior, which upset No. 3 seed Billings West 74-73

Recaps of each game below.

Great Falls CMR 41, Billings Skyview 39

The Great Falls CMR boys put together a fourth-quarter rally to defeat Billings Skyview 41-39 in the first round of the Eastern AA divisional. The Rustlers trailed by three entering the final stanza but outscored Skyview 17-12 in last eight minutes for the win.

Russell Gagne led all scorers with 17 points, including a 10-point eruption in the fourth quarter. Brendan Lindseth added eight points, while Caleb Currington, Bryce Depping and Keegan Barnes all scored six.

Julius Mims led the Falcons with 13 points, while Camron Ketchum added 10. The game featured eight lead changes.

CMR will now advance to Eastern AA semifinals where crosstown rival Great Falls High, the No.1 seed, awaits at 5 p.m. The Bison defeated the Rustlers twice during the regular season.

Bozeman 71, Butte 28

The Bozeman Hawks jumped on rival Butte early and never took their foot off the gas for a 71-28 win in the first round of the Eastern AA divisional.

Bozeman led 15-6 after one quarter, 31-12 at halftime and 49-23 after three. The Hawks outscored the Bulldogs 22-5 in the fourth quarter to earn the convincing win.

Carter Ash led the Hawks with 20 points, while Ryan Lonergan threw in 15 markers. Clay Ferguson scored 10 points to lead Butte.

Bozeman advances to face Billings Senior, Friday at 8 p.m.

Billings Senior 74, Billings West 73

Junior Bergen led all scorers with 21 points to lift No. 6 seed Billings Senior to an upset over No. 3 seed Billings West, 74-73.

In a game that featured 12 lead changes, Billings Senior survived a wild finish that saw a potential game-winning 3-pointer from the Bears fall short at the buzzer. It was only Senior’s third win of the season.

Payton Turner added 14 points for the Broncs while Jacksen Burckley added 11. Jesse Owens scored 20 points for West, with Josh Erbacher, Kobe Nelson and Cade Tyson each scoring 13.

Senior pulled off the upset despite being out-rebounded 45-27 by West.

The Broncs advance to face Bozeman in the Eastern AA semifinals at 8 p.m., while West will face Butte in loser-out action at 12:30 p.m.