GREAT FALLS—Quarterback Tyson Rostad ran for three touchdowns and threw for another as the West team took down the East 40-21 in the 75th annual Montana East-West Shrine Game at Memorial Stadium on Saturday.
It was the second win in a row for the West, moving the overall series record to 41-34 in favor of the East.
Rostad, a Hamilton graduate and University of Montana commit, was named the offensive MVP for the West.
"It's really important to me but I wasn't capable to do without everyone's help on the team," Rostad said. "There's a lot of kids that put in a lot of work this week. That O-line really blocked for me really great tonight. So I'm really thankful for that. And this MVP just goes to the whole team because there's a lot of kids that put in a lot of hard work."
Helena High defensive lineman Forrest Suero was named the West's defensive MVP. Suero is a Carroll College commit who collected three sacks on future Saint teammate Isaiah Claunch, and also assisted in a blocked field goal with Sentinel's Drew Klumph.
"I love that we're chirping the whole game. It wasn't anything dirty, it was just funny stuff. It feels amazing. Like like our chant says 'West is best,'" Suero said of sacking his future teammate.
For the East, Billings West's Taco Dowler, a Montana State commit, won the East offensive MVP after hauling in 203 receiving yards and scoring one touchdown. Laurel's Beau Dantic won the defensive MVP after a record-breaking 101-yard interception return.
The East's first snap from scrimmage slipped through the hands of Claunch and out the back of the end zone for a safety to give West an early 2-0 lead. West did most of its first-half damage on the ground, as Rostad and his Hamilton teammate, running back Tim Zohner, used a two-pronged attack to drive before Rostad provided West's first offensive score on a short run to make it 9-0 West.
Despite being forced to scramble on most snaps, Claunch would settle in as he hit Gallatin's Tyler Nansel and Dowler for 70-yard and 80-yard touchdown passes, respectively, for the East's only scores of the first half.
In the second quarter, Kalispell Glacier's Connor Sullivan scooped and scored on ran back Klumph and Suero's blocked kick for a 63-yard touchdown return.
Glacier kicker Patrick Rohrbach knocked through a 34-yard field goal to get the scoring going in the second half. Later in the third, Florence's Luke Maki, an Air Force commit, picked off East quarterback Braeden Mikkelson to give the ball right back to the West. West continued its rushing attack with Florence's Tristan Pyette and Rostad, who punched in his second rushing TD late in the third quarter.
Dantic intercepted Huot and ran it all the way back with under three minutes to give the East its third touchdown, but it was too little too late. Rostad scored his third TD on the ground on West's next possession to give the game its final score.