17 teams participated in the 2013 Montana History Bowl at Skyview High School on Saturday, March 9. 12 teams contested the varsity title, while five fought for the junior varsity crown. All were looking to earn a bid to our national championships, to be held on April 27 and 28 in Arlington, Virginia and Washington, D.C..
Nine teams qualified to the national championships after the five preliminary rounds concluded. In the JV division, the three qualifiers were Dawson County B (2-2), Skyview C (3-1), and Billings Senior B (4-0). The latter two contested the final immediately after playing in the fifth preliminary round, a match that ended up needing five overtime questions to settle. The rematch was not quite as close, though. Skyview had a 100-30 lead at halftime, then fought the second half to a draw to win the divisional title 180-110.
Over on the varsity side, six teams punched tickets to the national championships. Billings Central Catholic qualified two teams with 3-2 records. The host school’s A team also went 3-2 to qualify. Billings West, having only formed a team the week of the tournament, showed great potential by going 4-1 and averaging 250 points per game. Wyoming’s Big Horn A and western Montana’s Frenchtown A were undefeated, but Frenchtown earned the #1 seed with more total points scored over the five rounds. Joining them in the single-elimination playoffs were another Wyoming school, Riverside, and Billings Senior A.
All four quarterfinals held to seed, meaning the semifinals were between Frenchtown A and Skyview A as well as Big Horn A against Billings West. The defining point in the Frenchtown-Skyview semifinal was the second quarter; Frenchtown won that section 80-0. Aside from that, the two teams were only ten points apart. The Big Horn-Billings West semifinal was closer. Trailing by 40 going into the fourth quarter, West needed 30 on the last tossup to force overtime, but could only manage 10. This put both undefeated teams through to the final.
In that final, Frenchtown had the early advantage, leading 50-40 after the first quarter. Big Horn took the lead back on the final tossup and bonus of the second quarter, leaving Frenchtown the chance to pick a favorable third quarter category. That did not come to pass; both teams scored 50 in the third quarter. With the score 140-130 in favor of Big Horn, the final quarter of the final match began. Frenchtown tied it on the first tossup of the last eight. The second tossup went dead, but Big Horn hit a big 20 on tossup three. Frenchtown cut the margin back to ten on the next tossup, but consecutive 20s on tossups five and six for Big Horn, followed by only 10 for Frenchtown on tossup seven, meant the Wyoming team would walk away with the title. Final score was 200-170.
Many thanks to Rich McFate and Skyview High School for hosting this tournament again! We hope to see all of the qualified teams in Arlington and Washington this April!
|Date||March 9, 2013|
|Registration Deadline||March 7, 2013 7:00pm EST|
1775 High Sierra Blvd, Billings, MT 59105