No. 4 Helena stuns No. 1 Missoula Sentinel, snaps Spartans’ streak

Posted at 1:29 PM, Sep 24, 2022

MISSOULA — Missoula Sentinel’s winning streak is no more.

Helena High, No. 4 in MTN Sports’ Class AA power rankings this week, halted the Spartans run at 25 games with a 35-7 victory Friday at Missoula County Stadium as Cade Holland scored three second-half touchdowns.

Sentinel took a 7-0 lead in the second quarter when Riley Allen found Adam Jones with a 16-yard TD pass on fourth down. But the Bengals responded and wouldn’t relent.

First, Carter Kraft hit Manu Melo with a 69-yard bomb for a touchdown to tie it 7-7 at the 6:54 mark of the first. After a turnover, the Helena took the lead as Kraft connected with Melo on a 14-yard scoring pass.

In the third quarter, the Bengals’ Cade Holland barreled in from 20 yards to make it 19-7. Then Holland scored consecutive touchdowns in the fourth, one from 20 yards and another from 18, giving Helena a 33-7 lead with 8:46 left.

Defensively, Sam Ark made two interceptions to prop up the Bengals, including one in Helena’s own end zone in the third quarter. The Bengals also recorded a safety in the fourth.

Holland carried 18 times for 87 yards. The Bengals rushed for 139 yards in all. Kraft completed 16 of 28 passes for 231 yards with two TDs and two interceptions.

Helena's defense limited Sentinel to 43 net rushing yards. The Spartans converted just 2 of 13 third-down plays.

The Bengals improved to 4-1. Sentinel is now 4-1, having lost for the first time since a 28-21 defeat to Bozeman in the 2019 playoff semifinals.

The Spartans' winning streak was the fourth-longest in Class AA history, one behind Helena Capital's stretch of 26 straight wins from 1999-2001. Billings Senior is second all-time with 27 wins in a row from 2016-2018, while Helena Capital holds the record of 33 consecutive wins from 2006-2009.

Other Class AA scores:

Billings Senior 31, Great Falls CMR 28 (Highlights below)

Billings Senior hangs on to defeat Great Falls CMR

Billings West 53, Belgrade 14

Bozeman 63, Billings Skyview 14 (Highlights below)

Bozeman wins big at home against Billings Skyview 63-14

Bozeman Gallatin 21, Great Falls 17

Butte 54, Missoula Big Sky 7 (Highlights below)

Butte High routs Missoula Big Sky on Silver B's Night

Helena Capital 35, Kalispell Glacier 27 (Highlights below)

Capital Bruins last undefeated AA team standing after win over Glacier

Missoula Hellgate 29, Kalispell Flathead 28