Two standout basketball players from the 2017 Columbia Falls girls championship season have signed with colleges in the NAIA Frontier Conference. Peyton Kehr has signed with Montana State University-Northern and Kiara Burlage has signed with Lewis-Clark College in Lewiston, Idaho.
Lewis-Clark (17-1) led the Frontier Conference last season and Northern (12-6) was right behind them in second.
“We are absolutely thrilled to be adding Kiara to our women’s basketball program,” Lewis-Clark coach Brian Orr said in a media release. “She is a perfect fit for our system. Kiara is long, athletic and has a skill set to be a triple threat out of the trail or running the floor to help lead the break. She can score a lot of different ways, including with her back to the basket or stretching the defense from the perimeter. She can put it on the floor and we also like the fact that she gets to the foul line, which usually means she will be a tough matchup for opponents.”
Burlage said she was attracted to the school because it reminded her of the camaraderie she had at Columbia Falls.
“The girls were super welcoming and the community was super involved,” she said.
The 6-foot Burlage averaged 14.9 points per game and 7.8 rebounds. She scored 19 points in the state championship game against Hardin, helping lead the Wildkats to its first state title in 34 years.
In her senior season, Kehr shot 53 percent from the field, 34 percent from the 3-point line, and 80 percent from the free throw line. She averaged 14 points and 5 rebounds per game. She was recently named to the Great Falls Tribune Super State Team and was the state championship MVP.
“Peyton is a great addition for us. She shoots the ball well, she has good length, and is a proven scorer and winner. I really like the fact that she shot good percentages from everywhere on the floor. Plus, she’s coming from a great program and I know she has been well-coached along the way,” said Northern head coach Chris Mouat.
Kehr is the daughter of Dave and Robyn Kehr. She plans on majoring in education at Northern. Burlage is the daughter of Jessi and Josh Burlage. She plans on studying nursing.