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State Football Roundup: Purcell guides Bozeman to a second AA title


November 25, 2013

Bozeman Daily Chronicle

Bozeman head coach Troy Purcell talks to his players after the Hawks beat Glacier 24-14 for the Class AA state championship Friday night in Bozeman.

Make that three state championships for former Havre Blue Pony head coach Troy Purcell. Friday night in Bozeman, Purcell led his Hawks to a perfect season and a second state championship with a 24-14 win over Kalispell Glacier in the Class AA state title game.

Montana-bound Will Weyer threw touchdown strikes to fellow seniors Wyatt David (44 yards) and Dissly (5), and junior tailback Cordell Appel added a 38-yard burst in a 21-point second quarter of the 24-14 victory. The Hawks scored only a field goal in the fourth quarter, but the Glacier offense was stymied by a stout Bozeman defense all night.

Purcell, who led the Havre Blue Ponies to a 2004 Class A state championship, also guided Bozeman to a perfect season in 2010, and its first state title since 1917. The Hawks finished 12-0 this season.

Glacier has Havre connections as well. Former Havre Blue Pony Tyson Roe and MSU-Northern player Tee Artis are assistant coaches for head coach Grady Bennett and the Wolfpack, who were playing in their first-ever championship game.

Class A: Dillon 25, Billings Central 13

Junior quarterback J.D. Ferris rushed for two touchdowns and passed for 245 yards and two more scores as the Beaverhead County Beavers of Dillon defeated the Billings Central Rams 25-13 Saturday in the Class A state championship game.

Junior halfback Holden Ryan ran for 94 yards and Sean Ward scored twice for Billings Central (9-2).

It was Central’s seventh straight State A championship game.

It was also the third straight year, and the fourth time in seven seasons, the Beavers and Rams met for the state championship.

Class B: Loyola 30, Baker 13

Make it back-to-back state championships for Missoula Loyola. Saturday, the Rams went on the road and beat Baker 30-18 to win their second consecutive Class B state championship.

Matt McHugh threw two touchdown passes, while the Rams got a 40-yard interception return for a touchdown from Danner Linhardt and a 34-yard field goal from Eric Williams.

Baker (11-1) scored first on Seth Barkley’s 27-yard run. But Loyola tied the score on Tony Madsen’s 1-yard run in the second quarter. The Rams took the lead for keeps with a pair of third-quarter touchdowns.

Zach Hollenback caught a 22-yard TD pass from McHugh as Loyola (12-0) took the lead in the second half. Forestt Cooper then hauled in a 61-yard scoring toss from McHugh.

Class C: Ennis 68, Wibaux 56

Walker McKitrick ran for seven touchdowns and passed for three more as the unbeaten Ennis Mustangs defeated the Wibaux Longhorns 68-56 Saturday afternoon in the Class C state championship game.

McKitrick rushed for 147 yards and passed for 354 as Ennis, a team laden with star seniors, finished 12-0.

Wibaux, which got four touchdown runs from Jacob Bakken, finished 11-1.

Ennis scored the game’s first two touchdowns and never looked back. Wibaux, though, was never out of the game. The Longhorns scored on Bakken’s 37-yard pass to Conner Leach in the fourth quarter to draw within 60-56.

McKitrick’s subsequent 1-yard touchdown run clinched the victory for Ennis.

Six-Man: Geraldine-Highwood 50, S-G-D 18

Top-ranked Geraldine-Highwood scored the game’s first 27 points and never looked back in beating North Division rival Stanford-Geyser-Denton in Saturday’s Class C Six-Man state championship game in Highwood.

Geraldine-Highwood rushed for 287 yards and held the Bearcats to just 198 yards of offense and four first downs. The win, led by 118 yards rushing by Austin Malek, capped off a perfect 12-0 season for the rivals.


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