The Wildkats froshmore and junior varsity teams opened the basketball season with wins Saturday as they defeated Stillwater Christian School in Kalispell.
The junior varsity Wildkats picked up a gritty win against the Lady Cougar varsity squad, using a late-game run to secure the victory.
Down by three midway through the fourth quarter, the Wildkats rallied after JV coach Robert Tedlund picked up a technical foul for arguing with an official about the distribution of fouls. At the time, Columbia Falls had been called for 17 in the contest, while Stillwater had picked up only 5.
The Kats responded with a three to tie the contest and never looked back as they pulled ahead for a 36-29 win.
Columbia Falls led by as many as 14 in the first half but Stillwater fought back to erase that lead by the end of the third quarter.
LaKia Hill led the Wildkats with 12 points in the win, despite leaving the game with a sprained ankle before halftime. Paige Burger chipped in with 11 points, Graceanne Sevesind and Hannah Schweikert each scored four, Peyton Rhodes had three points and Madysen Hoerner scored one.
The froshmore team also picked up a win, downing the Lady Cougars JV 38-26.
The varsity Wildkats will open their season this weekend as they face Dillon at 2:30 p.m. Friday and Frenchtown at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Tip-Off Tournament in Missoula.