BILLINGS — Red Lodge used a 10-0 run in the closing minutes of the fourth quarter to break away from previously unbeaten Ronan 70-61 in the first round of the State B girls' basketball tournament.
The Rams, making their first appearance at the state tournament since 1972, will play two-time Class B champion Malta in the first semifinal on Friday at Rimrock Auto Arena at 6:30 p.m.
"This is a dream come true," said Zoe Cortner, who is also a member of the Rams' two-time Class B state champion volleyball team. "Volleyball first, now this, we're in the semifinals. We took third at districts and divisionals and now we're in the state semifinals. It's just amazing."
Red Lodge (18-6) was up by as many as 10 in the third quarter when the Maidens put together an 11-0 run.
Portia Cortner scored the go-ahead basket for the Rams and sister Zoe added two more scores during the pivotal run. Natalie Hilderman added a basket and two free throws.
Hilderman finished with a double-double of 33 points and 14 rebounds, while Zoe Cortner added 14 points. Hilderman was 14 of 18 from the field. All of her misses were from 3-point range. Red Lodge, as a team, shot 58 percent from the field.
Micalann McCrea led Ronan (23-1) with 23 point, while Alicia Camel had 19.
Fairfield 55, Florence 36
Fairfield outscored Florence-Carlton 33-16 in the middle two quarters to pull away for a 55-36 win Thursday night in the first round of the Class B girls state basketball tournament at Rimrock Auto Arena.
The Eagles (17-7) will play Wolf Point in an 8 p.m. semifinal.
Natalie Klinker and Kaitlyn Jones each posted double-doubles for Fairfield. Klinker had 18 points and 12 rebounds, both game-highs, while Jones finished with 13 points and 11 rebounds. Allie Goldhahn added 13 points, the bulk coming in the second quarter.
Rilee Mangun and Danielle Zahn each had eight points for the Falcons.
The Eagles shot 45 percent from the field, while Florence-Carlton shot 32 percent.
The Falcons (16-9) play Colstrip in a loser-out game at 1:30 p.m. Friday.
Malta 62, Three Forks 59
Malta made five free throws in the final minute, including three by Jada Nicholson, to get past Three Forks 62-59 in the first round.
The Wolves trailed by as many as 14 before taking their first lead, 51-49, on a Morgan Allen basket.
The game was tied three times before the M'ettes, the two-time defending Class B champions, took the lead for good on four straight points by Nicholson. She scored the go-ahead basket on a layin off a pass from Sophia Stiles with 1:10 to play and followed with two free throws.
"We knew we could do it, we just stayed together as a team," said Nicholson. "We slowed things down a little bit and hit some really important shots. "
Three Forks got within 60-59 on a Shainy Mack 3-pointer but Stiles made two free throws with 20.7 seconds remaining.
Nicholson finished with a game-high 25 points, while Stiles added 20, including a perfect 10 for 10 from the free throw line. Stiles also had seven rebounds and seven assists.
Mack led the Wolves with 21 points, while Allen had 18 and Kyle Olson 12.
Malta (23-1) advances to play Red Lodge in the semifinals at 6:30 p.m. Friday. Three Forks (19-5) plays Ronan in a loser-out game at noon Friday.
Wolf Point 55, Colstrip 45
Wolf Point doubled up Colstrip in the third quarter to defeat the previously unbeaten Fillies 55-45 Thursday night.
The Wolves (19-6) advance to Friday's 8 p.m. semifinal to play Fairfield. Colstrip (23-1) will play in a Friday afternoon loser-out game.
Wolf Point outscored the Fillies 16-7 in the third quarter.
"We just beat a great Colstrip team. They're well-coached," Wolf Point coach Cody Larson said. "We just feel blessed to be in this position right now. We played well tonight. We're just trying to take it and enjoy the moment a little bit. It was a lot of fun tonight."
Shelby Hanks led the Wolves with a game-high 23 points, including a perfect 15 of 15 from the free throw line. Aubrey Zilkoski added 18 points for Wolf Point, while Mahala Shawl had 10 rebounds. Ashtyn Hentges had nine rebounds for the winners.
The Wolves finished 21 of 26 from the free throw line.
Madison Bighorn had 15 points for Colstrip, while Tayler Factor had 12. Shelby Jordan finished with a team-high 10 rebounds.