Helena High and Missoula Sentinel survived the Friday loser-out round of the state Class AA high school boys’ basketball tournament in the Butte Civic Center.
Helena High sent crosstown rival Helena Capital home after a tight 47-44 battle, and Sentinel dumped Billings Skyview, 62-44.
Pierce Brown scored 12 points and Connor Murgel 10 as Helena HIgh came out ahead and will take a 12-12 record into a Saturday 9 a.m. loser-out game in the Civic Center against the Great Falls High-Missoula Hellgate semifinal loser.
Capital, finishing a 12-11 season, was led by Trevor Swanson with 16 points. The Bruins held a 37-34 lead after three quarters, but were unable to put the Bengals away.
Intensity seemed also rather high for the Sentinel-Skyview clash. The Spartans gained an early lead and built their advantage throughout the contest. Tony Frohlich-Fair finished with 20 points and Alex Germer had 10 to lead the Sentinel scoring. Scott Malikie yanked down 10 rebounds.
Sentinel had a 36-26 advantage by halftime after a 16-all first quarter. Skyview shooting fell off to 25 percent in the second half and the Falcons missed 17 of 21 shots from 3-point range over the course of the game.
The Spartans will take a 17-7 record into their Saturday 9 a.m. loser-out game at Butte High School against the loser of the Billings West-Bozeman semifinal.
Skyview was 12-13 for the season and was led by Cam Ketchum with 13 points in its last game. Zach Schacht, a 6-10 senior, pulled down 10 rebounds and blocked three shots. Sam Tranel was injured late in the game and sat out the last several minutes.
— Bruce Sayler, buttesports.com