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Local preps headed to play college sports


Havre Daily News/Colin Thompson

Marca Herron of Havre High will play college basketball at the University of Providence next fall. Herron is one of many athletes from the Hi-Line to earn college scholarships from the Class of 2018.

There is no question that the Hi-Line has a rich sports scene and this year was no different as talented athletes put together another memorable year of high school sports.

While Hi-Line sports fans were treated to a lot this past school year, the one constant in high school sports is change and with many of the top athletes moving on to college athletics, that change has already begun.

Locally, there were some impressive teams and when it was all said and done, none was better than the Havre High and Box Elder girls basketball teams. Both squads won their respective state titles, with the Blue Ponies winning Class A and the Bears Class C. Yet, that's not the only thing the two state title teams have in common. Both are also sending multiple players to play college basketball.

Marca Herron, an All-State point guard for Havre, committed to play at the University of Providence in Great Falls as a junior and that's where she will continue her career next season. She will be joined in the NAIA by teammates Danielle Wallace, another All-State performer and Kyley Verploegen, who earned All-Conference honors in the Central A. Wallace and Verploegen will each play at Dickinson State next season.

Box Elder will also send two players off to college basketball. One of them, Cecilia Vielle, will be playing right here in Havre, after signing an NAIA letter of intent to play for the Montana State University-Northern Skylights. Nikayla Anderson, who knocked down the game-winning 3-pointer in the Bears opening round win at the Class C state tournament over Twin Bridges, will also keep her hoops career going, as she will play next season for United Tribes Technical College.

Vielle and Anderson are the two athletes from Box Elder who will be able to move on to the next level, however, a slew of other Pony athletes will make the jump to college athletics along with Herron, Wallace and Verploegen. One such athlete is multi-sport standout Kaylee Nystrom, who was an integral part of the girls basketball team and its 24-0 record.

Nystrom earned All-Conference honors in track and also ran well enough in cross country to earn a spot at MSU-Northern running for the Skylights. Another former Havre cross country runner, Austin Jones, will join the men's team at Northern. He earned All-State honors this past season for the Ponies and will be part of a recruiting class that also features Isaiah Runs Above of Hays-Lodge Pole, who won the Class C boys cross country title.

Another local athlete headed to Northern is former Havre wrestler Ryan Stewart, who was a four-time medalist at the Class A state meet for the Ponies. He signed his NAIA letter of intent back in March.

In terms of spring sports, Havre has a few others that caught the attention of talent evaluators, starting with Camryn Huston, who will play softball next season at Dawson Community College in Glendive. The Havre Northstars, an American Legion baseball team, also has two players headed to the collegiate ranks in Brenden Danielson, who will play at Williston State in North Dakota and Brendan Garden, who will head east and suit up for Rochester College in Michigan.

Another standout athlete for Havre High, Ivar Aageson, has yet to commit to a school but has garnered interest in football, as well as track and field. Aageson, who was the only male athlete at Havre High to earn All-State honors in multiple sports, has received interest from Montana State University in track, but an offer has not been made.

Eddie Harmon of Turner is another local track athlete who has received interest from multiple schools, in multiple sports but has yet to make a commitment. Harmon, a three-time individual state champion in Class C with state titles in the 800 and another in the 400, has been recruited in both basketball and track.

Some other local athletes who will also be continuing their careers at the next level, include three Fort Benton alumni in Alia Evans, who is headed to Rocky Mountain College to play volleyball; Maddy Thompson, who is going to join the track and field program at Montana State University-Billings, and Landon Taylor, who will play football for MSU-N under first-year head coach Andrew Rolin.

Thompson is a two-time state champion and was also a member of the Longhorns 2017 Class C team championship in track. She was a key contributor on that squad, winning a state title in the 100-meter dash, while also finishing second in the pole vault and the long jump. Thompson also was part of the Longhorns' 400-meter relay team that won a state championship last month in Great Falls. As a team, Fort Benton finished runner-up.

Joining the others on this list is North Star volleyball player Lily Pedersen, who will continue playing at Dawson Community College. Pedersen was named First-Team All-Conference in the 6C East for the Knights last fall.

Editor's Note: This list was compiled of athletes who either contacted the Havre Daily News or we were made aware of by other means. If we missed anyone who earned a college scholarship for the Class of 2018, please notify us.


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