Class B boys basketball
2017-18 top three: 1) Bigfork, 2) Shelby, 3) Rocky Boy
All eyes should be on the reigning champions as the season gets underway. Not only will defending Class B champ Bigfork be in the hunt for a second consecutive title, the Vikings will look to keep their win streak rolling after storming to a 25-0 record last season. Bigfork completed the same feat during the 2014 season en route to their first championship.
The Vikings did graduate towering post Beau Santisteven last year but will return standout guard Anders Epperly. That said, don’t write off Shelby, which placed third at the state tournament two seasons ago and were runners up last season after falling in a tightly-contested 60-56 battle to Bigfork. The Coyotes have established themselves as a program on the rise.
As far as Southern B schools, Lodge Grass should be a team to pay attention to. The Indians advanced to the state tournament last season and delivered a first round upset by downing Anaconda 72-66 and ending the Copperheads bid a repeat appearance in the title game.
One big number
1,698: The number of career points Anaconda’s Braxton Hill needed to amass last season to eclipse Ali Hurley’s record and become the Copperheads all-time scorer. Hill, who is now a greyshirt with the Montana football team, accomplished the feat on Feb. 8.