Bozeman was playing too matches for head coach Clayton Harris to keep a close watch on team standings. As the Hawks continued to win, he felt the races for divisional championships were close.

The Hawks didn’t find out they finished first until the tournament was over and awards were handed out. Both the Bozeman boys and girls teams won the Eastern AA Divisional team titles Friday in Billings, with the girls defeating Billings Senior by one point.

“You could see some smiles and hear some gasps. They were certainly happy,” Harris said. “To be fully honest, the happiness was (limited) a little bit by their exhaustion. It’s been two very, very busy days.”

Bozeman’s girls finished with 42 points to Senior’s 41 with Billings West taking third with 16. The Hawks boys won with 35 points, seven better than runner-up Billings Skyview.

Harris didn’t believe the team victories came down to a single player but added the Hawks had to win “a couple really tight matches.”

Bozeman No. 1 singles players Maicy McCarty and Conner Joly won the girls and boys singles divisional titles, respectively.

McCarty defeated Skyview’s Kirsten Kraske 6-1, 6-0 in the championship during which Harris said McCarty was in control of each of her shots and therefore the entire match. She lost just two games through the entire divisional tournament.

“She’s just a more dominant player,” Harris said. “She’s just able to take control of the match from the very first game and really take care of business.”

Joly played what Harris said is “a very good player” in Aiden Binau of Skyview, yet Joly still pulled out a 4-6, 6-1, 6-2 win after falling in the first set. The two hadn’t played yet this season, so Harris and Joly watched Binau play in an earlier match Friday to devise a strategy.

“I’m really proud of him. His opponent from Skyview is a fantastic athlete,” Harris said. “So (Joly) and I had to scout out his weaknesses and find a way to exploit them. Conner did a great job of doing just that.”

Bozeman No. 1 boys doubles duo Levi Collins and Johnny Kamp made the championship with a 6-1, 7-6 (5) win in the semifinals but lost 6-1, 5-7, 6-1 in what Harris said was “a heartbreaker” in the title match.

“They had a good opponent,” Harris said, “and came up just a little bit short.”

Bozeman No. 1 girls doubles team Laurel Ward and Sasha Hathaway also took second in their bracket. They won 7-5, 6-3 in the semifinals but fell 6-1, 6-1 in the championship to Senior’s lead doubles team.

“That team from Senior is a very good, strong team,” Harris said. “Our girls fought hard but just weren’t able to take it to them today.”

Violet Newhouse, who’s played as the Hawks’ No. 2 player, also qualified for state by battling through the consolation bracket to the third-place match after she lost in the opening round of the girls singles tournament. Harris said that run also included “a very challenging match” that lasted over three hours.

“She was able to lock up the victory,” Harris said. “And after about an hour break, she was back to the court and was able to win that match pretty easily and punch her ticket to state.”

Bozeman No. 2 girls doubles team Ava Lauman and Anelise Anderson also qualified for state. They had to win a 7-6 (6), 6-2 match then the consolation semifinals 7-6, 6-0 before falling in the third-place match to take fourth.

“It was a couple very hard fought matches early in the day to help them lock it up,” Harris said. “So a pretty great performance from them as well.”

For those who will play at the Class AA tournament in Great Falls Thursday, Harris said practice begins Monday.

“Immediately the next step is to rest and give the kids a couple days off,” Harris said. “We’re just looking forward to playing our best at state, and let the results fall where they may.”

Colton Pool can be reached at or 406-582-2690. Follow him on Twitter @CPoolReporter.