Central Montana Sports Round-Up With Karl Koontz
Country Football on KMON-Week #7 (10-9-23)
It was another beautiful fall weekend for football under the Big Sky for the KMON sportscasting crews as they journeyed out in search of great small-town games to carry for area listeners.
Last Friday Night
Friday evening’s game of the week was an 8-man affair from Simms that really shook things up in the Central Division while Saturday afternoon in Dutton Big Sandy extended the longest winning streak in Montana high school football for all classes.
Friday night Chris Kelly and Randy Bogden headed up the Sun River Valley for a Central C 8-man battle between Lone Peak and the homestanding Tigers of Simms. Simms entered the game ranked 6th in the state and seemed to have the inside track on second place in the division; however, they were shocked by the Big Horns 64-36. The Tigers led early, 8-0 after one quarter, but surrendered 22 points in both the 2nd and 3rd periods to fall behind as the game slipped away. The injury bug has hit the Tigers hard this season and they now find themselves in a dog fight for one of the three playoff spots out of the conference. Ennis has an iron grip on the division, but Friday’s result opened the door for several teams.
Saturday afternoon it was Homecoming Day in Dutton and Chris and Karl were on hand for KMON sports fans. The defending state champs from Big Sandy spoiled the local festivities with a 48-8 victory that extended their unbeaten streak to 19 games (29 of their last 30 as well). The game was actually closer than the final score might indicate. The Power-Dutton-Brady Titans had the ball in the Red Zone four times and came away empty on all four occasions. In fact, on one of those deep penetrations into Pioneer territory, the Titans threw a pass that was picked off by freshman sensation Karter Jurenka and returned 77 yards for a touchdown the other way. Big Sandy has improved a lot the last few weeks with the return of some key injured players and looks poised to make another run at the title. Despite the loss, the Titans still look good for a playoff berth in the Northern C 6-man conference.
In other 8-man action around the Golden Triangle, Belt rolled past Harlem-Turner 78-6, Ennis ousted Choteau 72-14, Flint Creek bested Sheridan 40-0, and Cascade fell to Seeley Swan by a final of 54-36. The 6- man games weren’t much closer; Centerville topped Hobson-Moore 45-0 to remain unbeaten, CJI thumped Box Elder 68-14, Roy-Winifred handled GFCC 52-20, North Star got the better of Sunburst 50-13, and DGSG (Denton-Geyser, Stanford-Geraldine) stayed in the postseason conversation with a 59-8 win over Highwood.
Standings Week 7
Here are the standings after Week #7: In the Northern 8-man ranks, Belt has clinched the title, followed by Shelby and Fort Benton in the top three spots. The Coyotes and Longhorns tangle this weekend to determine playoff positioning. Ennis is the class of the Central 8-man field. Manhattan Christian and Simms both two losses while Flint Creek, Choteau, and Lone Peak are all 4-3. The last two games will decide which two teams join Ennis in the playoffs.
In area 6-man action, Big Sandy and CJI are both unbeaten in the Northern C. They play each other in Chester the last weekend of the regular season for all the marbles. Power-Dutton Brady and North Star are tied for third but the Titans hold the tie breaker. North Star should still make the playoffs in the four spot because that division get the extra playoff berth this year.
Finally in the Central 6-man Centerville and Harlowton-Ryegate-Judith Gap share the top of the podium so far. That division title will probably come down to the last game of the year on October 21st in Centerville (KMON plans to carry that game). Roy-Winifred and DGSG are in a race for third place and the final playoff slot from that conference.
8-Man Football This Week
This week in 8-man play Chinook heads to Belt for the KMON Friday night offering (7:00 kick-off) and Shelby plays at Fort Benton in the Northern division. In 8-man Central play it will be: Ennis @ Cascade, Lone Peak @ Sheridan, Simms @ Deer Lodge, Flint Creek @ Seeley Swan, and Manhattan Christian @ Choteau in a big game for both squads.
6-Man Football This Week
The 6-man games on tap this week include a rare Thursday night contest at Memorial Stadium between the GFCC Mustangs and the Hobson-Moore Titans. Robin and Chris will bring all that action your way with a kick-off set for 7:00. Other 6-man games feature: Harlo-Ryegate-Gap @ Highwood, North Star @ Big Sandy, Valier @ Box Elder, CJI @ Sunburst, and Power-Dutton-Brady @ Heart Butte. It’s crunch time for teams all across the Treasure State with the first round of the statewide playoffs set for October 28th. Just a few days before Halloween that could frighteningly good…sorry.
Bonus Thursday Night Game This Week
Don’t forget to tune in to a couple night games this week on Thursday and Friday evenings as KMON continues to bring you all the best in local small-town sports radio coverage. 560 KMON AM and on the KMON app.
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