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Win 'Em All: Little Laurel Wins Montana's Biggest Basketball Trophy

Length: 213 pages3 hours


March 15, 1969: a dozen overachieving teenagers, none taller than 6-foot-2, made Montana high school history. The Laurel Locomotives toppled the larger (in terms of school enrollment and lineup size) Kalispell Braves, in overtime to finish 26-0 and capture their school’s first state basketball championship. The dramatic showdown drew the biggest crowd ever for a Treasure State basketball game. Nearly 11,000 spectators filled the Montana State University Fieldhouse in Bozeman almost to the rafters. A month later, school administrators ended what made it possible for Laurel and two other smaller schools to defeat larger rivals for the state crown three times in six years. The vote to end Big 32 classification ignored its Montana “Hoosiers”-like appeal to fans. But serious fans haven’t forgotten that period, capped by Laurel’s accomplishment. Now, painstaking research and interviews of former players shed new light on events a half-century ago. Hop on the train and watch the Locomotives Win ‘Em All.

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