MHSA Approves Location for Girls Wrestling Tournament, Finalizes Winter Sports Postseason

Most classifications will have separate tournament locations for all sports; spectator limitations will be put in place

By Micah Drew
Maya Smith of Glacier High School wrestles Flathead High School’s Anna Morrison at Flathead High in Kalispell on Jan. 8, 2021. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

Wrestling

The Montana High School Association (MHSA) announced at its executive board meeting on Jan. 28 that the first all-classification girls wrestling state tournament will be held Feb. 19-20 at Lockwood High School in Billings.

In its first year as a sanctioned sport in Montana, girls wrestling has seen rapid growth, with 169 girls from 48 schools eligible to compete at the state tournament according to MHSA. There are no qualifying standards for the girls wrestling tournament — each competitor qualifies.

During the meeting, MHSA also approved the addition of three weight classes for the girls sport due to participation numbers, upping the total to 10 weight classes for the remainder of the season. The weight classes are now: 103, 113, 120, 126, 132, 145, 152, 170 and 205.

The three boys wrestling tournaments will be held at separate sites on March 5-6. Class A will be held in Miles City and Class B/C will be in Shelby. A location has not yet been decided for the Class AA tournament.

Swimming

The MHSA state swim meet will be separated into Class AA and Class A/B, each held on separate days at different sites. Entries for the Class AA meet will be limited to the top 24 finishers during the regular season, while the Class A/B meet will be limited to the top 18 competitors per event.

Polson will host the Class A/B meet on March 6 and Great Falls will host the Class AA meet on March 5.

Basketball

Similar to volleyball in the fall, Class AA is going to stick to a playoff format for the state tournament.

While MHSA is currently checking to ensure that host sites for the other classification tournaments remain eligible to perform their hosting duties, no changes have been made. Class A will compete at the Butte Civic Center, Class B at the Billings Metra and Class C at the Brick Breedan Fieldhouse in Bozeman.

Currently, MHSA has determined that each site must provide a minimum of two spectator tickets per player for all teams competing at a state tournament. Wrestling will be allowed a maximum of four spectator tickets per competitor depending on site capacity and basketball tournaments are allowed to fill facilities to a maximum of 25% capacity but no more than 500 fans per team.

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