PREP BASKETBALL: Bison, Rustler hoopsters return to court Thursday

The hanging of a new calendar on the wall brings to light the beginning of the Eastern AA boys' and girls' basketball seasons throughout Montana, and especially in the Electric City.

Great Falls High and C.M. Russell's boys' teams both open their league campaigns and 2022 calendars at their respective home gymnasiums against the Belgrade Panthers and Skyview Falcons (respectively), while the girls will be on the road for games in Billings Heights and Belgrade.

On the boys' ledger, with both the Bison and Rustlers having one loss in the preseason, Swarthout Fieldhouse will be the site for Belgrade and Great Falls High, while the Rustlers will entertain defending state Class AA champ Skyview. Both games tip off at 7 p.m.

Skyview got a blocked shot in the final seconds last March to beat Great Falls High 62-60 in the chipper at the Pacific Steel and Recycling Arena. Those two teams will renew acquaintances Saturday afternoon at 4 in the Magic City.

The Rustlers and Panthers will meet at the Special Events Center in Belgrade Saturday at 2.

For the two local girls' teams, it has been a struggle. While the Rustler girls won their first game of the season on the road in Kalispell against Glacier, they have struggled against Flathead and Sentinel, falling 40-37 to the Lady Braves before getting shelled by 21 against Sentinel and by 37 to Hellgate.

The Lady Bison, however, are still looking for win number one. They're 0-4 on the year, looking to find their groove.

The Lady Rustlers play Skyview in Billings Thursday night at 7, then host Belgrade on Saturday at 2 at CMR, while Great Falls goes to Belgrade Thursday night at 7 p.m. before coming home to Swarthout Fieldhouse to face the Lady Falcons at 4 p.m. Saturday.

This article originally appeared on Great Falls Tribune: Bison, Rustlers back on hardwood for league games Thursday