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Articles written by Nick Pavelich


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  • Baxter fifth at state

    Nick Pavelich|Jun 2, 2022

    Ellie Baxter concluded her golf season with a fifth-place finish at the state tournament in Fairmont May 17 and 18. She shot 95 on the first day of the tournament, a respectable but unexceptional score that had her in a five-way tie for eighth place. The next day, however, she shot a 79, the lowest score for a round in the entire girls' tournament. Her combined score was 174, just 12 strokes behind first-place finisher Celi Chapman of Jefferson High School. Baxter, a junior, is already back on...

  • County tracksters place at state meet

    Nick Pavelich|Jun 2, 2022

    Sanders County track and field athletes completed one last challenge last weekend at the state meet in Great Falls. Thompson Falls senior Will Hyatt placed in two events, finishing his high school career with a fourth-place finish in the 3,200 meter race at 10 minutes, 14.19 minutes, and placing sixth in the 1,600 meter run with a time of 4:38.01. Sophomore Trinity Riffle was the only female athlete to place from Thompson Falls, finishing sixth in the high jump at 4 feet, 10 inches. Junior Breck Ferris brought home two medals from state. He...

  • Track teams prepare for state meet

    Nick Pavelich|May 26, 2022

    The Western B and C Divisional Track Meet was held in Frenchtown last week. Athletes from class B schools had to place in the top six to go to state while those from class C had to be in the top seven. These are your state-bound tracksters: PLAINS Mason Elliott, 6th, 110 M hurdles, 17.8, also 3rd, 300 M hurdles 43.22 Joseph Martin, 6th, Triple jump, 38-01.25 Alexis Helterline, 4th, 800 M, 2:39.06 Peyton Wasson, 5th, 800 M 2:29.51, also 4th, 1600 M 6:14.06 Alexis Deming, 3rd, Shot put, 34:04.5,...

  • Thinclads head to divisional

    Nick Pavelich|May 19, 2022

    District track meets were held across the state last week with Noxon and Hot Springs competing in 14C and Plains and Thompson Falls in 7B. Athletes needed to place in the top six to advance to Divisionals and for some it was the end of the season. "Several athletes ended their season yesterday but went out fighting," Blue Hawk Coach Trenna Ferris said. "I would like to recognize the following athletes for their dedication and efforts this season: Braedon Ferris, Ethan Geisbusch, Will Hawkins, Le...

  • Baxter finishes second in division

    Nick Pavelich|May 19, 2022

    Junior Ellie Baxter of Thompson Falls is the last golfer left standing in Sanders County. She earned a berth in the State Tournament by placing second at the divisional tournament in Fairmont last week with a score of 89. Only the top 15 individual scores qualify for a spot at state, along with the top four teams. Plains had three girls in the top 40 with Lexa Craft, Grace Horton and Genna Deschamps placing 31st, 32nd and 34th, respectively. Thompson Falls put two boys in the top 40, Nick Tessier at 31st and Cael Thilmony at 36th. Thompson...

  • Trotters win home golf meet

    Nick Pavelich|May 12, 2022

    The Plains girls’ golf team won at their home course last week, shooting 488 as a team and placing three girls in the top 10. Lexa Craft was fourth with a score of 109, Grace Horton placed fifth with a score of 111 and Genna Deschamps was 10th with a score of 130. Ellie Baxter, the only girl on the Thompson Falls team, took second with a score of 96. The Plains boys came in third behind Thompson Falls by only four strokes, 447 to 443. Brandt Snead led the Plains boys with a low score of 97 which was good enough for sixth place, Cael Thilmony a...

  • Track teams compete among the state's best in Missoula

    Nick Pavelich|May 12, 2022

    Eighteen teams attended the KLH Invitational including Hot Springs, Noxon and Plains. The meet was held on Saturday at MCPS Stadium in Missoula and featured some of the top athletes in the state. Joseph Martin of Plains finished fifth in the 400 meters and 800 meters. Senior Kyle Lawson of Hot Springs hit 11-06 in the pole vault for third place, For the Plains girls, Alexis Demin was fourth in the shot put with a throw of 31-10 and second in the discus (104-03). Hot Springs senior Katelyn Christensen was first in the shot put at the KLH with a...

  • County fares well at ARM

    Nick Pavelich|May 5, 2022

    Thirteen teams attended the 24th annual Akey, Rosenberg and Murphy (A.R.M.) track meet last week in Whitefish, including Thompson Falls, Plains and Hot Springs. Athletes from all three teams placed in the tournament. For Thompson Falls, Ryan Bucher won the 400 with a time of 52.81 seconds, William Hyatt placed fourth in the mile with a time of 4 minutes 42.58 seconds and fifth in the 800 with a time of 2 minutes 7.94 seconds, the boys’ short relay team took fourth with a time of 46.11 seconds, Breck Ferris took fifth in the long jump with a l...

  • Baxter captures St. Regis title

    Nick Pavelich|May 5, 2022

    Ellie Baxter won the girls' division with a score of 91 at the Trestle Creek Golf Course. "The kids had some better weather to golf and they are improving," Coach Doree Thilmony said. Ellie Baxter was first place at the St. Regis Invitational. Coach Thilmony said sophomore Cael Thilmony is edging his way up in the pack, hovering around 101 and hoping to break 100 soon and that Colton Wormwood is working toward the low 100's. She added that Nick Tessier is also improving as the Hawks' season...

  • Spa City Splash raises funds

    Nick Pavelich|May 5, 2022

    Reiley Winebrenner of Hot Springs organized a ten team basketball tournament to raise money to purchase new jerseys for the junior high basketball teams of Hot Springs. The event raised $2,200. The Newdle team from Columbia Falls won the tournament for the second year in a row. Team Kozy Crew took second and Neiman Ranch took third....

  • HOME TURF

    Nick Pavelich|Apr 28, 2022

    Eleven teams and 83 participants attended the Gary Thompson Invitational on Saturday at River's Bend Golf Course, hosted by the Blue Hawks. Junior Ellie Baxter was the only Blue Hawk to place. She tied for third with 99 strokes. Coach Doree Thilmony talked about her coaching strategy. "First, most important thing is good ball contact...They're working on fundamentals on the range." She also talked about the unique challenges of the River's Bend Golf Course; the small greens, "Probably the smalle...

  • Trotters make comeback in Thompson Falls

    Nick Pavelich|Apr 28, 2022

    The Blue Hawk softball team dropped to 4-5 after going scoreless in back to back games, first in Florence (16-0), then at home against Ennis (again 16-0) and Plains (9-6). "You focus on the positives," Coach Jared Koskela said of how he plans to bounce back and keep team morale up. "And learn from the mistakes. We made a few more mistakes than the other teams but they just hit well and found open spots. We also hit well but it seemed to go straight to a fielder. We will focus on what we can...

  • Trotters beat Trojans 12-4 in home matchup

    Nick Pavelich|Apr 28, 2022

    The Trotters beat the Lady Trojans 12-4 on Friday with well-rounded team play; solid fielding, hitting and pitching. The Trotters drew a crowd of several dozen fans including Carl Parker who attends regularly when the weather is fair. What are the Trotters' strengths? "Pitching is pretty good. Hitting is good," Parker said as pitcher Celsey VonHeeder hit a double in the third inning. VonHeeder, a senior, is a strong batter and pitcher. I asked Parker who he thought was the strongest hitter on...

  • Cool conditions for T. Falls Invitational

    Nick Pavelich|Apr 21, 2022

    The high temperature in Thompson Falls was 38 degrees on Thursday, accompanied by strong winds that Blue Hawk coach Trenna Ferris called, "pretty brisk." Despite the weather, 14 teams attended, "the biggest T. Falls invite we have had," said Ferris. "We had to turn teams away, such as Whitefish, who were still trying to get their first meet in of the season. Our dirt track would not be able to handle 90 more athletes," Ferris continued. "We are thankful that teams still want to attend our meet...

  • Savage Heat celebrate milestone

    Nick Pavelich|Apr 14, 2022

    Several returning state champions took the track on Friday in the largest Dave Tripp ever. Twenty-one teams attended what Hot Springs Athletic Director and Superintendent Gerald Chouinard called, "the biggest Dave Tripp ever. By a long shot. Last year we had six teams." Teams traveled from as far away as Shelby and Boulder to attend the Hot Springs-hosted meet held in Polson. When asked about the advantages of hosting such a large meet, Chouinard said, "The atmosphere is so competitive. We're...

  • Blue Hawk softball improves to 4-1

    Nick Pavelich|Apr 14, 2022

    The Blue Hawks softball team beat Troy 10-0 last Thursday. Cheyla Irvine pitched the whole game, shutting out the Trojans. On offense, five Blue Hawks batted .500 or better and junior Liv McCormick led the team with three runs. On Sunday, the Hawks beat Bonners Ferry 18-8 behind strong batting. McCormick and sophomore Blakely Lakko each had three RBIs. The Hawks are 4-1 on the season, with their sole loss to Plains. Their next home game is against Powell County on Saturday, April 16. HAWKS PERFORM WELL IN LIBBY The Thompson Falls thinclads...

  • Hawk golfers tee off season

    Nick Pavelich|Apr 7, 2022

    The Blue Hawk golf team went to its first meet last Thursday. Sophomore Cael Thilmony had the low score for the team with 101, placing him almost exactly in the middle of the field. The winner of the meet, Preston Field of Jefferson High School, scored 80. Sophomore Nick Tessier had the next low score for the Hawks with 119. "Nick can drive the ball well, his struggle was chipping and putting," Thompon Falls Coach Doree Thilmony said of Tessier. Junior Colton Wormwood scored 126 and sophomore...

  • Trotters edge by Hawks

    Nick Pavelich|Apr 7, 2022

    The Plains-Hot Springs Trotters beat the Thompson Falls-Noxon Blue Hawks last Tuesday in Plains during the first softball action of the season for the Sanders County teams. The Blue Hawks led the whole game and were ahead 8-5 at the end of the sixth inning. The Trotters took control in the seventh and scored four runs while the Blue Hawks went scoreless as Plains went on to win 9-8. Plains Senior Celsey VonHeeder pitched the whole game for the Trotters and held the Blue Hawks to a batting...

  • Track begins with Eureka Time Trials

    Nick Pavelich|Mar 31, 2022

    The Lincoln County Lions hosted Plains and Thompson Falls at the Eureka Time Trials on Saturday. The Blue Hawk boys dominated in the 100, taking first through fourth places in the event with the fastest time by junior Jesse Claridge at 12.22 seconds. William Hyatt, a senior, won both the 1600 and the 3200 by wide margins for the Hawks. His time of 10 minutes, 27.64 seconds in the 3200 is fast enough to automatically qualify him for that event in the state track meet. Junior Breck Ferris also...