HELENA — The opening weekend of the season couldn't have gone better for the Helena girls soccer team.
On Friday, the Bengals cruised to an 8-2 win over Kalispell Flathead and on Saturday, Helena (2-0) enacted some revenge on Glacier, the team that defeated the Bengals in the 2020 state championship match thanks to a 9-0 result in favor of Helena High.
Freshman Maddie Todorovich exploded onto the scene with a hat trick for the Bengals. A slew of other Bengals also found the back of net including Elsa Grebenc, Tess Lawlor, Mia Melton, Rachel Plaster, Logan Todorovich and McCory Vranka.
In the boys match, the script was flipped as Glacier won 6-0 over HHS.
The Capital boys also suffered a shutout loss at the hands of Glacier on Friday but rebounded in a big way with a 5-0 win over Flathead Saturday to improve to 1-1.
Tizer Kazmierowski paced the Bruins with two goals while Jace Claassen also played a key role with a goal and two assists. Trey Moseman and Ray O'Connor also scored goals for CHS. Nathaniel Wilcox also pitched in with an assist.
"A good come back effort for us," Capital boys head coach Stefan Wall said. "We needed to find a way to score in the run of play and did that. Jace Claassen had a goal and two assists, which is what we needed from our senior striker. Luke Kailey was a force in the back and Sean Swingley was outstanding in the net."
As far as the Bruin girls were concerned, Capital fell to Glacier in its opener on Friday by a score of 1-0, following a goal in the closing minutes by the Wolfpack.
Yet, not to leave Kalispell empty handed, the Bruins bounced back with a 3-0 victory over Flathead. Taylor Cornwell led the way with two goals and Lilli Danzer also added a goal for the Capital girls who are 1-1.
"Excellent defensive play and passing through the midfield led to a great team win," Capital girls head coach Brandon Price said. "Good start to the season."
Capital's 71-match winning streak snapped
Billings Senior opened its volleyball season at home on Saturday with a bang, sweeping visiting Helena Capital 25-17, 25-18, 25-20 and ending the Bruins' state-record 71-match winning streak.
Senior toppled reigning three-time State AA champion Capital behind the eight kills and eight digs of Kara Pospisil. Teammate Izzy Ping contributed six kills, 11 digs and three blocks.
The winning Broncs also received 28 assists from Rylee Kogolshak, plus five kills, four aces and four blocks from Maddie Swanson.
Capital's Rachael Stacey wound up with six kills and three aces. Kennedy Pocha aided the effort with 15 digs.
In their second match of the day and the season, the Bruins fell at the hands of Billings Skyview, who defeated CHS by the scores of 25-23, 25-27, 25-21 and 25-6. Stacey led Capital with 10 kills and five aces. Parklyn Heller added eight kills and three blocks, while Kayla Almquist notched 22 assists.
The Helena High volleyball team opened the season with a pair of nonconference matches in Billings and fell to both Billings West and Billings Senior.
Helena opened its season against Billings West and battled to five sets, dropping the last one 15-7. Helena took the first set 25-17, but the Golden Bears rallied to win the second and third before winning the fifth.
Lauren Heuiser and Syndney Mattfeldt each had 13 kills in the loss for Helena High. Kim Feller added 28 kills and three aces, while Morin Blaise contributed with 17 digs.
In the second match, Billings Senior notched a sweep over Helena High by the scores of 26-24, 25-12 and 25-22. Heuiser had nine kills, as did Mattfeldt. Katelyn Onespot-Danforth also pitched in with 13 assists and two aces.
East Helena continued in pool play of the Western A Tip Off Tournament Sunday in Ronan and lost a match Saturday to Whitefish by the scores of 25-19 and 25-22. Dymon Root had three kills and 2.5 blocks for the Vigilantes. Dru Lindsey added nine digs and Teagen Wigen managed two assists.
Bengals take cross country title in Corvallis
The Helena High and Capital cross country teams opened the season Saturday in Corvallis and in the girls meet, it was no surprise to see Helena High come out on top in the team race, finishing with 21 points compared to 35 for CHS.
Odessa Zentz took first place, narrowly defeating teammate Kylie Hartnett. Zentz posted a time of 20:51 just a half-second ahead of Hartnett (20:51.5). Annie Menden (21:50) and Rylie Schoenfeld (22:14) also finished fourth and fifth.
"I'm really proud of the effort and the competitiveness our girls exhibited," Helena girls head coach Jesse Zentz said. "Our varsity performed well and our JV demonstrated that we have some depth. Across the board, a strong day."
Emma Compton paced Capital with a time of 21:46 to finish third. Claire Boutilier (6th, 22:16), Amber Lund (7th, 22:29) and also Lillian Grady (9th, 22:43) also finished in the top 10.
In the boys race, Hamilton took home the team prize with a score of 29, just ahead of Capital which was second with 37. Helena High took fourth with 49.
Brody Romano was the top finisher for Capital, taking fourth thanks to a time of 17:34. Tyler Jost posted a 17:46 to finish sixth, while Henry Ballinger (17:56) and Carlin Onstad (18:01) took seventh and eighth, respectively.
Adam Ryland-Davis was the top runner for the Helena boys, getting 15th with a time of 19:29. Evan Stefaniak was right behind him in 16th (19:34). Henry Sund (19:55) and Jake Matthews (20:05) also finished in the top 20, as did Jacob Curry (12th, 18:35) and Tristan Kelly (19th, 20:05).
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