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Aug. 1: Senators win state championship


Aug. 1: Senators rally, beat Lakers to advance to chipper, regional


July 31: Kalispell snaps Royals win streak; Senators, Lakers advance to Sunday

GREAT FALLS--The win streak is over.

The Kalispell Lakers beat the Billings Royals, 8-5, on Saturday night at Centene Stadium to snap the Royals' 22-game winning streak at the Class AA State Tournament to advance to play the Helena Senators on Sunday morning for a berth into the championship game and regional tournament.

The No. 3 Helena Senators beat No. 5 Billings Scarlets, 5-4, Saturday evening at Centene Stadium to advance to the last day of the Class AA State Tournament.




Cy Miller struck out five and earned a complete-game victory on the mound, and Forrest Suero broke a 4-4 tie in the fifth inning with an RBI single.

Trailing 4-1, the Scarlets scored a run in the fourth and two in the fifth to tie the game before Suero hit the eventual game-winning RBI.

Third baseman Mike Hurlbert had two hits and second baseman Gavin Thennis had two RBIs to help lead the Senators on offense.

The Scarlets ended up out-hitting Helena, 9-8.  Leadoff hitter Nate McDonald went 3-for-4 with two runs scored while Mike Feralio and No. 9-hitting catcher Keaton Mickelson each had two hits.

July 30: Royals beat Helena in extras to punch regional ticket; Scarlets, Kalispell stay alive

GREAT FALLS--In an amazing game, the Billings Royals beat the Helena Senators, 5-4 in 9 innings, Friday night in the undefeated semifinal at Centene Stadium.

The victory lifted the No. 1 Royals into the state championship game. And, since Montana is sending two teams to the regional tournament, the Royals punched their berth into it by securing at least a state runner-up finish.

In loser-out action, the No. 5 Kalispell Lakers eliminated No. 2 Missoula, 4-1, and the No. 5 Scarlets eliminated No. 7 Great Falls, 5-1.

Saturday's two games feature the Scarlets and Senators in loser-out action beginning at 4 p.m. At 7 p.m., the Royals will have the chance to eliminate the Lakers.


Billings's Kruz Slevira hit a first pitch, two-out fly ball into shallow right field that Helena's right fielder and shortstop both dove for but missed, and Davis Mosier, who walked with two outs, scored from second base for the walk-off victory in extra innings.

 In the top of the ninth inning, Billings center fielder Lance Schaaf fielded a single by Tyler Tenney and fired it to catcher Michael Ohlin, who tagged Quin Belcher, who was trying to score, on a bang-bang play to end to top half of the inning.

Trailing 4-3 in the seventh inning, Belcher scored the game-tying run on Ethan Kientz's one-out ground ball single into left field.

Tied 3-3 in the fourth inning, the Royals scored an unearned run on a two-out error to take a 4-3 lead.

Trailing 3-1 in the third inning, the Royals scored twice to tie it on Ohlin's two-out line drive two-run single to left field.

The Senators took a 3-1 lead in the second inning. Matt Burton highlighted the inning with an RBI single. Belcher broke a 1-1 tie with a sacrifice bunt.

The Royals out-hit the Senators 10-7. Slevira went 3-for-4 while Owen Doucette, Gunner Thompson, and Jaden Jordahl each had two hits.

Ethan Keintz and Tyler Tenney each went 2-for-5 to help pace the Senators.

Keintz started on the mound and pitched six innings. He allowed seven hits and two walks while striking out five. Only two of the four runs he allowed were earned as the Senators committed three errors.

Reagan Walker pitched 6 1/3 innings and struck out six to earn the victory on the mound. He spread six hits and no walks, and allowed only one earned run as the Royals committed four errors.


Kalispell pitcher Kostya Hoffman allowed five hits and two walks, while striking out one, to earn the complete-game victory, and the Lakers scored three runs in the fourth inning to eliminate the Mavs.

Center fielder Carver Van Aken had two RBIs, while right fielder Elijah Owens and catcher Grady Drish each had one to help pace the Lakers, who played ton of small ball on offense en route to out-hitting Missoula, 6-5.

Third baseman Ethan Diede and left fielder Kael Willis each had two hits in the win. Kalispell's Nos. 2, 3, 4, and 5 hitters each scored a run, while the Nos. 6, 8, 9 hitters drove in runs.

Trailing 1-0 in the fourth, Kalispell plated three runs using a lot of bunts and then added another run in the fifth inning as Hoffman and the defense held their own.


Billings pitcher Spencer Berger hurled a one-hitter and the Scarlets broke open a 2-1 game in the sixth inning with 3 runs to eliminate the two-time defending state champion Bucks.

Mike Feralio and Logan Nyberg each went 2-for-3 and combined for three RBIs to help lead the Scarlets. Nyberg got the scoring going in the sixth with a single to left field to plate Jaden Sanchez, who doubled to start the inning.

July 30: SWX broadcast journalism

Day 3 of State Tournament coverage

July 30: 406sports print journalism

Day 3 of State Tournament coverage

July 29: Senators beat Mavs, Royals beat Scarlets, Bozeman survives

GREAT FALLS--It's No. 3 Helena versus No. 1 Billings Royals in the undefeated semifinal Friday night. And there's a berth to the regional tournament on the line.

The No. 1 Billings Royals beat the No. 5 Billings Scarlets, 2-0, and No. 3 Helena beat No. 2 Missoula, 11-5, Thursday to advance to the undefeated semifinal.

The No. 6 Bozeman Bucks defeated No. 7 Great Falls, 6-4, on Thursday afternoon to survive loser-out play.

On Friday, Bozeman will play the Scarlets at 1 p.m. Kalispell will play Missoula at 4 p.m.

The undefeated semifinal game, pitting the Royals and Senators, begins at 7 p.m. with a berth to the Northwest Regional Tournament in Gillette, Wyo., on the line. 

The national American Legion Baseball program awarded Montana two berths into the regional tournament because of the strength of the program and success completing a regular season and state tournament last summer during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. The Montana state champion is slated to play the second game of the regional tournament on Wednesday, Aug. 4, against the Idaho state champions. The Montana runner up will play the Washington state champ in the first game of the regional Wednesday morning. The winner of the regional advances to the World Series. Montana has not sent a team to the World Series since 1958. However, Bozeman, Missoula, and the Billings Scarlets were each one out away from a World Series berth in the past five years.


Helena pitcher Tyler Tenney walked none in a complete-game victory, while striking out four, and the Senators exploded with six runs in the top of the first inning to take control.

Helena's No.-2 hitting centerfielder Ethan Keintz, No. 5-hitting shortstop Mike Hulbert, and No.-7 hitting third baseman Forrest Suero each had three, multiple RBIs, and scored runs to help lead the Senators on offense.

Keintz had a double and three RBIs.

Helena catcher Trysten Mooney got the scoring going with a no-out, bases-loaded squeeze bunt. Then Hulbert, Forrest Suero, Quinn Belcher followed with RBI singles. Belcher's and Suero's single into right field scored two.

The Senators plated another run in the second, and two more in the third to take a 9-0 lead before the Mavs scored four times off a plethora of fielding and throwing errors in the third inning.

Helena out-hit the Mavs, 13-7, but committed five errors as Tenney notched 109 pitches with no walks and a hit batter.

Missoula center fielder Adam Jones had two hits, including a double, and third baseman Charlie Kirgan pulled a home run over the left field wall to pace the Mavs on offense.


Royals pitcher Lance Schaaf pitched a complete-game, two-hit shutout and the Royals scored a run apiece in the fourth and sixth innings to send the Scarlets to the losers' bracket and advance to the undefeated semifinal game.

Schaaf, a 145-pound lefty, struck out seven and walked one.

No. 4-hitting designated hitter Owen Doucette hit an RBI single in the fourth inning.

Each team had just two hits in a game that lasted less than an hour and a half. 

Scarlets starting pitcher Jaiden Turner allowed one hit and two walks, while striking out three, in 4 2/3 innings of work. Drew McDowell relieved him and struck out three  while walking two in just 1 1/3 inning of work. The run charged to him was unearned after a two-out error in the outfield plated the Royals' insurance run.


Trailing 4-3 in the fourth inning, Bozeman's Jake Vigen hit a two-out, two-run double to right field to score Jackson Burke and Max Matteucci and give the Bucks a 5-4 lead they wouldn't relinquish.

 There were two ties, and two lead changes in the first four innings.

The Bucks added an insurance run in fifth inning off a Dillon Coleman RBI single.

The Bucks scored twice the first inning before the Chargers scored a run apiece in the second and third innings to tie the game. Then the Chargers plated two in the top half of the fourth to take a 4-2 lead that Vigen, and Matteucci with an RBI ground ball single up the middle, erased.

The teams tied each other with six hits apiece.

Great Falls shortstop and leadoff hitter Nate Fowler had two hits, including a two-out RBI triple to center fielder that scored Josh Banderob, to lead the Chargers. Pitcher Hunter Houck struck out seven in six innings while allowing six hits and two walks, but absorbed the loss on the mound while allowing just one earned run.

Bozeman pitcher Jackson Burke held the Chargers scoreless over the final 3 1/3 innings to earn the win.  Coleman and Preston Fliehman each had two hits in the victory. 

July 28: Helena, Missoula, Scarlets win on day 1 of state tourney

Bozeman pitcher Brady Higgs delivers a pitch on Wednesday, July 28, at Centene Stadium in Great Falls as Helena's Gavin Thennis and Trysten Mooney lead off from first and third, respectively. Higgs got out of the jam with a strikeout.

GREAT FALLS--The Missoula Mavs, Helena Senators, and Billings Scarlets started off the Class AA state tournament with victories on Wednesday at Centene Stadium.

Thursday's winner bracket games pit the No. 1 Billings Royals against the No. 5 Billings Scarlets at 4 p.m. Then No. 2 Missoula will battle No. 3 Helena at 7 p.m.

No. 7 Great Falls and No. 6 Bozeman start Thursday's action at 1 p.m. The No. 4 Kalispell Lakers have a day 2 bye, and are back in action Friday.


Missoula pitcher Zach Hangas spread eight hits and one walk over 6 1/3 innings, and catcher Andrew Claussen went 3-for-3 with a run scored and RBI to help lead the Mavs.

Trailing 1-0 in the third inning, the Mavs erupted for five runs and never looked back while out-hitting the Chargers, 10-8.

Hangas struck out only one, and gave up just two earned runs.

Missoula's Nos. 2 and 3 hitters, right fielder Henry Black and second baseman Skye Palmer, each had two hits. Black also had two RBIs, while Palmer scored twice.


Helena pitcher Cy Miller pitched a one-hit, complete-game shutout and five Senator batters had multiple hits in a 10-0 game shortened to five innings because of the mercy rule.

Miller struck out seven and walked one.

Left fielder Matt Burton had three hits while center fielder Ethan Keintz, shortstop Tyler Tenney, catcher Trysten Mooney, and second baseman Gavin Thennis each had two hits in the victory. First baseman Forrest Suero and designated hitter Victor Scott each had two RBIs.


The Billings Scarlets' first two hitters of the game scored and pitchers Bradley Wagner and Jackson Schaubel combined to spread out seven hits to help lead No. 5 Billings over the No. 4 Kalispell Lakers.

The Lakers stranded the bases loaded three times and left 13 runners on base total, compared to the Scarlets' 4. The Scarlets out-hit the Lakers, 9-7.

Scarlets third baseman Nathan McDonald and first baseman Michael Feralio each had two hits in the win. Feralio hit a no-out, two-run double to the wall in left-center field to highlight the first inning.


July 28: SWX newscast

Day 1 of the State AA Tournament broadcast journalism coverage

July 28: 406sports article

Day 1 of the State AA Tournament print journalism coverage


Regular season complete.

July 25: Scarlets sweep Great Falls to conclude regular season

BILLINGS--The Scarlets swept Great Falls, 15-5 and 8-1, to end the regular season of Class AA Montana American Legion Baseball.

The Class AA State Tournament begins Wednesday, July 28, in Great Falls.

The Billings Royals secured the No. 1 seed and first-round bye with an amazing 23-1 regular season record. They await the winner of the Kalispell Lakers versus Billings Scarlets opening-round game.

The Missoula Mavs edged out the Helena Senators for the No. 2 seed with a 16-8 conference record. The Mavs will play No. 7-host Great Falls at 7 p.m. on Wednesday.

No. 3 Helena will face No. 6 and two-time defending state champion Bozeman Bucks Wednesday at 4 p.m. 

The Nos. 4 and 5 seeds, Kalispell Lakers and Billings Scarlets, play at 1 p.m.

July 19: Helena, Kalispell split

KALISPELL--The Helena Senators and Kalispell Lakers Class AA American Legion Baseball team exchanged wins in a doubleheader, 6-3 in favor of Helena, and then 2-1 for Kalispell.

Helena remained tied for second place in the standings with Missoula, both 5 1/2 games behind the front-running Billings Royals. Kalispell dropped to fourth, 71/2 games back.

July 18: Helena, Missoula take sweeps

KALISPELL--The Missoula Mavs and Helena Senators completed doubleheader sweeps over the Billings Scarlets and Kalispell Lakers, respectively, to stay tied for second place in the Class AA standings.

Missoula beat the Scarlets, 11-10 with a come-from-behind, walk-off victory and 10-1. Helena beat the Lakers 6-4 and then came from behind in their last at bats to win the second game, 6-5.

Both teams improved to 13-7 in conference play. Helena is back in action today in Kalispell for two. Kalispell fell into fourth place in the standings.

July 18: 406sports

Missoula sweeps Scarlets

July 18: 406sports

Senators sweep Lakers

July 17: Mavs, Scarlets split; all No. 2 teams play today

MISSOULA--The Missoula Mavs and Billings Scarlets Class AA Montana American Legion Baseball teams split a doubleheader. Missoula won, 5-2. Then Billings won, 11-5.

All three teams vying for the No. 2 seed at the state tournament in Great Falls, starting July 28, are in action today, July 18.  These same two will play another doubleheader Sunday, while Helena is in Kalispell for four over the next two days.

July 17: Missoulian / 406sports

Mavs, Scarlets split in Missoula

July 15: Royals pummel Scarlets, magic number 1

BILLINGS--The Billings Royals Class AA American Legion Baseball team moved to within one victory of clinching the No. 1 at the state tournament in two weeks by beating their cross-town rival Scarlets, 16-6, on Thursday.

The Royals are now 18-1 in Class AA conference games. They are 6 1/2 games ahead of Missoula, Kalispell, and Helena in the standings.

July 15: Billings Gazette

Royals sweep Scarlets

July 15: SWX news

Royals sweep Scarlets, improve to 45-10 on season

July 14: Kalispell Lakers sweep Great Falls, move into No. 2 tie

GREAT FALLS--The Kalispell Lakers Class AA American Legion Baseball team swept a doubleheader from the Great Falls Chargers on Wednesday, 7-5 and 20-9, to improve to 10-6 in conference and into a three-way tie for the No. 2 seed at the state tournament.

Tied 2-2 in the top of the sixth inning of the first game, the Lakers erupted for five runs to take a commanding lead and never looked back. Then, in the second game, Kalispell held a 20-3 lead into the bottom of the final inning.

Kalispell pitcher Kiostya Hoffman spread eight hits and two walks over seven inning to earn the complete-game victory in the first game. G Drish and K Willis each went 2-for-3 with two RBIs to help pace the offense.

In the second game, first baseman/pitcher Danny Kernan went 3-for-4 with five RBIs and four runs scored to help lead the Lakers. Gaige Brink and Willis each collected three hits, as well. Joe Schlegel allowed three runs over five innings to pick up the victory on the mound.

The sweep lifted the Lakers into a second-place tie, six games behind the No. 1 Billings Royals with both Missoula and Helena.

July 14: SWX newscast

Kalispell Lakers sweep Great Falls

July 14: Great Falls Tribune

Kalispell Lakers sweep Great Falls

July 13: Royals sweep 4 from Mavs; magic number for No. 1 seed down to 2

BILLINGS--The Billings Royals Class AA American Legion Baseball team won its 13th straight game, and 15th of last 16 games, by sweeping four conference games from the Missoula Mavs on Tuesday.

The victory improved the Royals to 17-1 in Class AA Montana ALB conference games. Two conference losses by Helena and Missoula would secure the No. 1 seed, and probable first-round bye at the Class AA MALB State Tournament in Great Falls, starting July 28.

The Billings Royals beat Missoula, 3-2 and 8-1. Their next game is a big one against the cross-town rival Scarlets Thursday, July 15.

Missoula fell to 10-6 in conference play, in a second-placed tie with Helena, six games behind the front-running Royals.

July 13: SWX news

Royals take 4 from Missoula, win 13th straight

July 12: Royals sweep Mavs in battle of Nos. 1-2

BILLINGS--Royals pitcher Reagan Walker hurled a complete-game shutout on Monday to help lead the No. 1 Billings Royals to a 1-0 American Legion Baseball Class AA victory over No. 2 Missoula, then the Royals finished the doubleheader sweep with a 15-5 win to improve to 15-1 on the conference season and drop Missoula to 10-4.

The teams will finish their 4-game stand against each other today in Billings.

Walker spread five hits and four walks over seven innings, while striking out four. Right fielder Kruz Slevira went 2-for-3 with the big RBI in the fourth inning.

Missoula actually out-hit the Royals, 5-3, but committed three errors to the Royals's one.

Missoula pitcher Alex Certel pitched a gem of his own, allowing three hits and four walks over six innings while striking out two.

In the second game, Billings's Nos. 1-2 hitting middle infielders Jaeden Jordahl and Jessen West each went 3-for-3. Jordahl scored four runs and West, along with No. 3 hitting pitcher/first baseman Davis Mosier, had three RBIs. 

July 9: SWX News

Former Billings Blue Jays Class A state champion pitcher/catcher Gunner Thompson helps lead the Class AA Royals to first place as a Class AA rookie

July 11: Kalispell, Great Falls split; No. 1 Royals face No. 2 Missoula

GREAT FALLS--Kalispell pitcher Max Holden hurled a complete-game shutout to help lead the Lakers to a 1-0 Class AA American Legion Baseball victory over Great Falls on Sunday, then the Chargers avenged the loss, 16-6, to forge the doubleheader split.

Kalispell improved to 8-6 (31-11 overall) in conference play and is in fourth place in the standings. Great Falls improved to 2-12 in conference play (22-29 overall).

With a potential first-round bye at the State AA Tournament in Great Falls, starting Wednesday, July 28, on the line, the No. 1 Billings Royals will face the Missoula Mavs in a four-game tilt in Billings with a doubleheader today and tomorrow. 

July 7: Billings Royals take 4 from Helena, Missoula sweeps Great Falls

BILLINGS--The top-ranked Billings Royals Class AA American Legion Baseball team thumped Helena in two games on Wednesday, July 7, to complete a four-game sweep over previously No. 2 Helena.

In Great Falls, the Missoula Mavs swept a doubleheader from the Chargers to help solidify the current No. 2 seed.


Royals sweep Helena in battle of top teams

July 6: Billings Royals sweep Helena in battle of Nos. 1-2

BILLINGS--The No. 1 Billings Royals swept the No. 2 Helena Senators, 13-3 and 1-0 in nine innings, on Tuesday, July 6, to improve to 11-1 in Class AA play and dropped Helena to 11-5 in conference play.

Billings's Jessen West walked and then stole second before Owen Doucette hit a one-out, walk-off, line-drive single up the middle in the bottom of the ninth inning of game 2. In a pitchers' duel between Helena's Ethan Keintz and Billings's Lance Schaaf, Keintz pitched eight innings of shutout ball, spreading out four hits and two walks while striking out three. Schaaf pitched one-hit ball over 6 1/3 innings while striking out six and walking five.

In Kalispell, the Lakers completed a four-game sweep over Bozeman by rallying from a 6-0 deficit and improved to 7-5 in Class AA play, good for fourth place. Bozeman fell to 4-16 and last place in the standings.


Kalispell Lakers sweep Bozeman again


Royals sweep Helena, face off against tomorrow

June 2: Bozeman, Helena split doubleheader to open conference play

BOZEMAN--The two-time defending Class AA state champions Bozeman Bucks walloped the Helena Senators, 11-1, in the first game of a doubleheader on Wednesday, June 2, then Helena scratched out a 4-2 victory in the second game to forge the split.

In game 1, Bozeman pitcher Brady Higgs spread four hits and three walks over five innings of the mercy-rule shortened game, while striking out three. Leadoff hitter Logan Pailthorpe went 3-for-4 with a double, triple, and home run and three runs scored. No. 3 hitter Preston Fliehman also went 3-for-4 with three runs scored and two RBIs. No. 4 hitter Corbin Holzer had two hits and three RBIs. No. 6 hitter Jake Vigen also had three RBIs.

In game 2, Helena trailed 2-1 until scoring three runs in the sixth inning.  G Thennis had an RBI double to tie the game. Then M Hurlbert hit a two-out RBI triple to give the Senators a 3-2 lead.  And T Mooney hit a two-out RBI single to add an insurance run in that decisive sixth.

Helena pitcher Cy Miller struck out 10 in six innings of work, while allowing two hits and four walks to earn the victory. Relief pitcher Victor Scott closed the seventh inning with three strikeouts.  Bozeman starting pitcher Jackson Burke held the Senators to just one run over five innings, spreading out four hits and two walks.

Helena improved to 18-7 overall on the season while Bozeman improved to 13-10 overall.


May 1: Border to remain closed, schedules shuffled

While Montana seemed to handle COVID-19 okay, the international border between Canada and the United States is to remained closed for at least a couple of more months, meaning the Montana-Alberta American Legion Baseball Class AA conference schedules need to be shuffled.

What was supposed to see a three-game schedule played against each of the nine Class AA teams (including Lethbridge and Medicine Hat, Alberta) has to be reorganized so that each of the seven Class AA Montana teams would play each other four times to comprise conference schedule. So, each team will play a 24-game Class AA schedule to determine seeding into the state tournament in Great Falls, starting July 28. As of now, a rematch of the state championship game between Helena and Bozeman is slated to begin conference play on Wednesday, June 2.

Hope remains that MAALB could field an eight-team Class AA state tournament if the border opens before July 28. In that event, Lethbridge and Medicine Hat would square off against each other for the No. 8 seed. The loser of that matchup would be eliminated from postseason play.

Feb. 1, 2021: Montana-Alberta ALB back at it!

COVID-19 couldn't keep Montana American Legion Baseball down.

After a successful summer of 2020, where Montana's ALB teams completed a regular season and state tournament amid the coronavirus pandemic, and No. 1 Bozeman beat No. 2 Helena for the state championship, the organization is back and ready for the 2021 season.

While non-conference games will start in April, the Class AA conference season should officially get underway on Saturday, May 29, when the two Canadian teams from Alberta face off against each other in a doubleheader after not being able to play at all last year. Then, on Wednesday, June 2, Helena travels to Bozeman in a rematch of the last season's state championship game.

Class AA coaches met online in January and decided on a 3-game regular-season conference schedule with each team to determine the top 8 seeds into the Class AA state tournament. The travel rotations will remain on track from seasons past.

The Class AA state tournament is in Great Falls from Wednesday, July 28 to Sunday, Aug. 1.  The state champion will advance to the Northwest Regional Tournament in Gillette, Wyoming, from Wednesday, Aug. 4, to Sunday, Aug. 8. The regional champ will advance to the American Legion Baseball World Series in Shelby, North Carolina, from Thursday, Aug. 12, to Tuesday, Aug. 17. 

The entire state's Class AA conference schedule can be found by clicking on the game schedule link above. The schedule, scores, and standings will be updated daily in June and July. Unfortunately, the teams and players stats pages will probably not be updated, unless individual teams synch their scoring software with this website (which, for some reason, I can't figure it out--yes, I contacted our host).




Carl Hennell

Carl Hennell

Montana Class AA Chairman