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Local high school football teams end season with exciting wins and losses

Local high school football teams end season with exciting wins and losses

In the highly competitive world of high school rugby, one game can make or break a season. This year, the Western 6-Man Rugby League demonstrated the unpredictability of the sport as the Hot Springs Wildcats captured the league title in a heartbreaking loss.

When tragedy struck, the Wildcats were riding an impressive 7-0 winning streak under head coach Jim Lawson. The death of player Jody Paige came as a huge shock to the team, the community and the region as a whole. Despite the tragedy, the Hot Springs community rallied around the team in support and mourning.

Hot Springs persevered and won the league championship with an early victory over West Yellowstone. In the first round of the playoffs, they extended their winning streak with a 40-6 victory over the Valiants. In their second round game against Harlowton-Rygate-Judith Gapp, the Hotshots fell in the final minute by a score of 65-60. Despite the loss, the Hotshots finished the season with an admirable 8-1 record, earning the respect of their opponents for their resilience in the face of adversity.

Local high school football teams end season with exciting wins and losses

Elsewhere in the league, Noxon finished the season with a 5-2 record, but failed to make the playoffs due to an earlier loss to West Yellowstone. Albertson’s, the other six-man team in the league, faced the challenge of being an independent team with no seniors and often competing with minimal players. Despite the difficulties, they showed determination in an exciting game against Lima, winning a close game 39-38 in the final seconds.

Thompson Falls, the only team in the area with 11 players, finished fourth in the WB rankings and qualified for the state playoffs. Despite losing to Red Lodge in the first round of the tournament, their performance was a marked improvement over last year.

Superior made their first appearance in the B-8 league and had a good mid-season run that culminated in a playoff berth. However, they lost to Fort Benton in the second round.The Plainsmen ended their two-year losing streak with three wins this season under second-year head coach Mike Tatum.

St. Regis, a member of the Mullen, Idaho, co-op team, finished the season with an 8-2 record and its sixth consecutive trip to the Idaho State Playoffs. The Tigers produced a stellar season despite losing to Hagerman, Idaho in the first round of the tournament.

Overall, the fall 2023 high school football season was filled with exciting victories, heartbreaking losses, and inspiring stories of determination and resilience.

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