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BUTTE -- Western Montana's representatives had a tough go of it in the first round of the State B girls' basketball tournament on Thursday.

Loyola Sacred Heart, Bigfork and Ronan all got beat in their tournament openers, leaving a bronze trophy as the best-case scenario for the three teams.

The Chiefs, the top seed from the West, ran into the buzz saw that is Shiloh McCormick and the Saint Labre Braves. McCormick scored 35 points to help her team score the upset win, 71-51.

The Breakers fell to the Mustangs, 64-54, and Bigfork dropped its opener 58-42 to Malta. The Valkyries meet the Breakers in a loser-out game at 9 a.m. on Friday. Ronan and Forsyth, which lost to Fairfield, meet in Friday's other loser-out matchup. 

Shepherd 64, Loyola Sacred Heart 54

A rocky first half by the Breakers set the tone as they dropped their state opener.

The Mustangs jumped to a nine-point lead in the first period and by halftime their advantage ballooned to 17. Loyola hit 9 of 26 shots in the first half and Shepherd 15 of 28.

The Mustangs continued to maintain a comfortable lead for the duration, using a stellar performance by 6-foot-3 senior center Janie McRae. She hit 10 of 12 shots from the field, grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds and blocked four shots.

Senior guard Skylar Hollenback paced the Breakers with 23 points and five assists. Brook Kolar had a team-high seven rebounds to go with her 12 points and three steals.


Malta 58, Bigfork 42

The Vals won the battle of the boards, 24-23, but couldn't match the hot shooting of the defending state champions.

The Mustangs hit 48.9 percent of their shots from the floor (22 for 45) and 4 of 8 from 3-point range. The Vikings weren't far behind at 43.2 percent (16 for 37), but their struggled from behind the arc with a 2-for-11 showing.

Junior guard Sophia Stiles, who was recently named Gatorade girls' basketball player of the year for Montana, tallied a team-high 27 points for Malta. Teammate Hailey Nicholson had 10 points, seven rebounds and six steals.

Lana Berg led Bigfork with 18 points. Teammate Miranda Campbell had a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds.


St. Labre 71, Ronan 51

McCormick finished 13-for-25 shooting from the field, tallying a game-high 35 points for Montana's most dangerous Class B girls' scorer. She also added seven rebounds in the win.

Sara Big Hair added a double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds to help the South's No. 3 seed score the upset win over top-seeded Ronan.

Ronan's Lee Camel countered with 14 points and Alicia Camel had 10 points and 13 rebounds for the double-double, but the Maidens trailed from the get-go. St. Labre got out to a 21-9 first-quarter lead and cruised the rest of the way.


Fairfield 42, Forsyth 39

The Eagles rallied from a 16-8 first-half deficit with a 22-point third quarter to take a 30-24 lead headed into the fourth quarter. They held on for the win.

Raelynn Keefer tied the game for the Dogies in the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer, but Forsyth couldn't eclipse Fairfield. Keefer finished with seven points; Kaylee Zard led Forsyth with 14 points in the loss.

Fairfield's Allie Steinbach scored a team-high 12 points in the win. The Eagles will meet St. Labre in semifinal action Friday.