Montana preps: Bozeman Hawks run past Great Falls High Bison

Great Falls High ball-carrier Sean Eagan, center, tries to break away from Bozeman’s Chandler D’Agostino, left, and Mick Delaney in the first half against Friday night at Memorial Stadium. / TRIBUNE PHOTO/LARRY BECKNER

The Great Falls High Bison headed into Memorial Stadium on a blustery Friday night, firing on all cylinders.

The Bison took their first offense drive into the end zone and hindered the Bozeman Hawks from getting a first down on their start from scrimmage.

The skilled Hawks, though, shook off the Bison’s early momentum and scored 31 unanswered points to defeat GFH 31-7.

“I thought we came out of the gate and competed really well,” GFH head coach Matt Krahe said. “The consistency was just not there. That’s something we have to work on.”

The Bison (0-2) started the game hot, as Sukut engineered an 11-play opening drive that ended in a spiral to tight end Dylan Swandal for a 13-yard touchdown.

The Bison raced to 11 first downs in the first half. But the Hawks weren’t going to be contained for long.

Bozeman (2-0) running back Hunter Gappmayer used 1-yard and 3-yard scampers into the end zone for scores to give Bozeman a 14-7 advantage.

Bison senior quarterback Colby Sukut completed 14 of 26 passes for 128 yards and one score on the night. He also tossed four picks against the Hawks’ feisty defense, including three in the second half.

Hawks’ QB Will Weyer went 13 for 27 for 247 yards and one touchdown and an interception.

“He threw the ball well,” Krahe said. “He’s got a strong arm.”

Weyer’s favorite target, Collin Miller, grabbed four passes for 149 yards, including catches of 63, 44 and 40.

“He’s an athlete,” Krahe said. “The quarterback just threw some up for him and he came down with them.”

The workhorse Gappmayer rushed for 77 yards on 22 carries, including his two TD scores.

The Bozeman Hawks led 14-7 heading into the locker rooms.

The Bison and Hawks kept each other out of the end zone in the third quarter. Midway through the fourth frame, the Bison saw a seven-point deficit to the Hawks quickly mature into a 21-point advantage in favor of Bozeman.

Miller burned the Bison defense to the tune of a 63-yard score, and on the Bison’s ensuing drive, Nick Hostetler scooped up a Bison fumble and rumbled 18 yards into the end zone for a second score in a matter of seconds.

At that point, the wind had escaped the Bison’s sail.

“We have to compete for all four quarters,” Krahe said.

The Hawks added a 21-yard field goal for good measure before escaping Great Falls with a second-straight impressive win to start their season.

“It’s a mental aspect,” Krahe said. “We can compete; we just have to prove it.”

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