Par for the course: Seeds hold on opening day of StutsmanThe opening night of the 2010 Class B boys’ Stutsman County Tournament has come and gone, and according to the seeding there were no surprises at the Jamestown Civic Center on Thursday night. Top-seeded LaMoure rolled past Pingree-Buchanan-Kensal 63-32 in the first quarterfinal of the evening, and then it was fourth-seeded and two-time defending champion Central Prairie’s turn with a 65-55 win over Edgeley-Kulm. In the night bracket, No. 2-seeded Ellendale skated past Midkota 61-40, and No. 3-seeded Carrington wrapped up Day 1 with a 54-37 win over Kidder County.
By: Michael Savaloja, The Jamestown Sun
The opening night of the 2010 Class B boys’ Stutsman County Tournament has come and gone, and according to the seeding there were no surprises at the Jamestown Civic Center on Thursday night.
Top-seeded LaMoure rolled past Pingree-Buchanan-Kensal 63-32 in the first quarterfinal of the evening, and then it was fourth-seeded and two-time defending champion Central Prairie’s turn with a 65-55 win over Edgeley-Kulm.
In the night bracket, No. 2-seeded Ellendale skated past Midkota 61-40, and No. 3-seeded Carrington wrapped up Day 1 with a 54-37 win over Kidder County.
Today’s games will start with consolation play at 3 p.m. inside the Civic Center, with P-B-K facing Edgeley-Kulm and Midkota vs. Kidder County to follow.
The semifinals get underway at 6 p.m., with LaMoure facing Central Prairie and Ellendale taking on the defending state champion Carrington Cardinals.
LaMoure 63, P-B-K 32
The No. 1-seeded LaMoure Loboes kicked off the tournament by getting back into the win column with a 31-point victory over Pingree-Buchanan-Kensal.
LaMoure started off the year by defeating Carrington by five points, but then lost back-to-back games to Sargent Central and Lisbon by a combined four points.
The Loboes forged out a 30-15 lead at the half behind nine points from Tyler Thielges and eight more from Zach Stemen. LaMoure limited the Rebels to just two field goals in the second, both of which were scored by Scott Bennett who ended up leading P-B-K with 14 points and nine rebounds.
One of the big stories in the first half was the defensive play of LaMoure’s Josh Czajkowski. Czajkowski was able to pick up six steals in the first half, as P-B-K committed 14 of its 23 turnovers before the break.
“I thought Josh did a really nice job right away defending (Nicholas) Blaskowski. He did a great job setting the tone for us with a lot of tip passes that we were able to get our hands on,” LaMoure coach Darren Thielges said. “It was one of those deals where we were just making hustling plays and being relentless, which is kind of our word.”
LaMoure kept up its relentlessness in the third with three of Jared Meiklejohn’s four treys in the game to help LaMoure extend its lead to 49-20 to start the fourth. Meiklejohn led the Loboes with 18 points, while Tyler Thielges finished with 17 and Stemen tossed in 10.
“I thought our defensive intensity was there, and that has been there all season for us so far,” Thielges said. “It was nice to see the guys come out intense and hungry.”
Central Prairie 65, Edgeley-Kulm 55
Central Prairie junior guard Thaddaeus Owen only scored five points against the Edgeley-Kulm Rebels, but his only three-pointer of the game with 2:32 left in the fourth period was as big as they come.
Owen’s dagger from the wing broke up a 53-53 tie to put the Firebirds up by three, and Central Prairie never lost the lead from there to win by 10.
“It was a really big shot for Thaddaeus, and a big one for his confidence,” Central Prairie coach Paul Erbele said. “At times in the game he struggled — we all did — and for him to step up and take that shot and hit it will really help his confidence.”
The shot couldn’t have come at a better time. Just seconds after it twicked through the net, the Firebirds’ Eric Knodel picked up his fifth foul and was forced to watch the final two minutes from the bench.
Knodel led all scoring with 23 points, and his 12 points, eight rebounds and five assists in the first half all but kept the Firebirds’ chances of winning the Stutsman County Tournament for the third straight year alive.
Edgeley-Kulm led 37-30 at the half.
“Eric is just a competitor. He’ll do whatever it takes to give us a chance to win,” Erbele said. “He was able to grab a few offensive boards in the first half and that really kept us in it.”
Knodel ended with a double-double, grabbing a game-high 14 rebounds. His senior teammate, Aaron Moser, also posted a double-double with 14 points and 12 boards.
Edgeley-Kulm forged its seven-point lead in the first half behind 54 percent shooting. But the Rebels went ice cold in the second half, converting just 4 of 26 shots from the field for 15 percent.
The Rebels were led by Beau Diegel, who hit three three-pointers and posted 22 points on the evening.
Central Prairie got back into the game with an 8-1 run to start the fourth to tie the game at 38-38 with 4:20 left before the fourth.
In a boys’ Stutsman County Tournament first, Thursday’s game was Central Prairie’s first game of the 2010-11 season.
“It was our first game and we knew we’d have some question marks coming in.” Erbele said. “We have a long ways to go, but we had to claw back the whole way in this one … for us not to give up is always a good sign.”
Ellendale 61, Midkota 40.
A dominating second period by Ellendale assured the Cardinals a better finish this season than their fifth-place trophy from a year ago.
Leading 16-11 after one period behind seven points by senior forward Tanner White, the Cardinals turned up the heat with five straight points from senior guard Kris Lauder to open the second period to take a 21-11 lead.
Ellendale later rifled off a 10-run in the period, behind four points each from White and Andrew Wertz, taking a commanding 31-13 lead with 2:46 left before the break.
Ellendale led 37-18 at the half and never looked back.
“Our intensity for the most part was pretty good. In our first game of the year we came out a little flat, so that was good to see,” Ellendale coach Brian Vance said. “For three quarters we played pretty intense basketball.”
Ellendale opened the season last Friday with a 78-63 victory over South Border. White scored 44 points in that one and he carried that over to Thursday with a game-high 20 points.
White also led the Cards with eight rebounds, six assists and three steals.
“I think we are going to be able to score points this year,” Vance said. “I think Tanner is going to get his points and Pat (Swift), Kris (Lauder) and Andy (Wertz) are all good scorers as well when they get their feet under them.
“Our defense is a work in progress.”
Along with White, Lauder (11), Wertz (10) and Swift (10) all hit double figures in scoring. Midkota (0-2) was paced by Alex Miller with 10 points.
Ellendale outrebounded the Mustangs 39-25, and held Midkota to 34-percent shooting in the game.
Carrington 54, Kidder County 37
What a difference a year makes.
Last season it wouldn’t have been uncommon to see both the Carrington Cardinals and the Kidder County Pirates scoring in upwards of 80 points per game.
But that was then, and Carrington’s 54-37 victory over the Pirates in the final quarterfinal game of the evening is now.
Both teams played a rather sluggish first half, amassing just 39 combined points as the Cards took a 25-14 lead at the break. Carrington, however, limited the Pirates to just 24 percent shooting in the first half and just 30 percent for the game.
“There wasn’t a lot of emotion. The guys are tying to prove too many things and they’re thinking too hard instead of just playing,” Carrington coach Nate Monson said. “In a game of spurts, you have to play with emotion or there’ll be more lows than highs.”
Both teams are dealing with trying to reestablish their identities this season, after both teams advanced to the state tournament last year. The defending Region 4 champion Cardinals won it all, while the defending Region 3 champion Pirates settled for fourth.
Graduation hit both teams hard, and the loss of Mr. Basketball award winner Adam Randall for the Pirates and all-stater Devin Barton for the Cards was more than noticeable.
One returning athlete for Carrington that did make the difference for his team was senior guard Easton Page. Page scored 10 points in the first half and rattled in 11 more in the second 16 minutes for a game-high 21 points. Page also led the Cards with four steals.
“(Page) has played well all year,” Monson said. “He gained a lot of confidence towards the end of last year and has continued that every game.”
Carrington came out in the third and created two quick turnovers that went back for points to put the Cards up 29-14, and after leading 40-30 at the end of three it was all a matter of holding on to things after that.
The win was Carrington’s second of the year (2-1), after falling to LaMoure 55-50 in Carrington in both teams’ season-opener.
“In all three games we’ve played, even in our loss to LaMoure, we played good defensively,” Monson said.
Norman Nicholson paced the Pirates with 12 points.
Coach Monson said stopping Ellendale’s Tanner White in today’s all-Cardinal semifinal match will be key.
“No. 1 on the list is stopping (Tanner) White. He had another nice game today,” Monson said. “Ellendale is crisp with the ball and they’re always looking to make something happen.
“We need to contain White and also get a hand in (Kris) Lauder’s face. He also had a nice game.”
For the boxscores, turn to Page B2 of The Sun.
Stutsman County Invitational Tournament
At Jamestown Civic Center
LaMoure 63, Pingree-Buchanan-Kensal 32
LaMoure 17 30 49 63
P-B-K 8 15 20 32
LaMoure — Jared Meiklejohn 18, Tyler Thielges 17, Zach Stemen 10, Skylar Shockman 6, Josh Czajkowski 4, Brady Thielges 2, Devin Pedersen 2, Jordan Fugl 2, Casey Sailer 2. Totals: 26-50 FG, 6-8 FT, 31 rebounds (Schockman 7, Stemen 5, Meiklejohn 5), 7 assists (T. Thielges 2, Tanner Carlson 2), 15 steals (Czajkowski 8). Three-pointers (5-13): Meiklejohn 4, T. Thielges 1.
P-B-K — Scott Bennett 14, Wyatt Guthmiller 8, J.R. Perleberg 3, Cole Diede 3, Karsten Vigessa 2, Nicholas Blaskowski 2. Totals: 11-39 FG, 7-9 FT, 26 rebounds (Bennett 9), 5 assists (Guthmiller 2, Blaskowski 2), 6 steals (Perleberg 3). Three-pointers (3-11): Guthmiller 2, Diede 1.
Records: LaMoure 2-2; P-B-K 0-3.
Central Prairie 65, Edgeley-Kulm 55
Central Prairie 11 30 45 65
Edgeley-Kulm 20 37 44 55
Central Prairie — Eric Knodel 23, Chance Loock 15, Aaron Moser 14, Nathan Denning 6, Thaddaeus Owen 5, Chris Heinrich 2. Totals: 26-48 FG, 10-13 FT, 35 rebounds (Knodel 14, Moser 12), 12 assists (Knodel 5), 6 steals (Moser 2). Three-pointers (3-8): Owen 1, Loock 1, Knodel 1.
Edgeley-Kulm — Beau Diegel 22, Tallen Berg 12, Alex Lindgren 9, Logan Hanson 7, Nathan Elhard 3, Steven Giesler 2. Totals: 19-54 FG, 13-23 FT, 27 rebounds (Giesler 8), 4 assists, 8 steals. Three-pointers (4-9): Diegel 3, Elhard 1.
Records: Central Prairie 1-0; Edgeley-Kulm 1-2
Ellendale 61, Midkota 40
Ellendale 16 37 51 61
Midkota 11 18 26 40
Ellendale — Tanner White 20, Kris Lauder 11, Patrick Swift 10, Andrew Wertz 10, Jordan Morrissey 5, James Johnston 4, Brady Enge 1. Totals: 26-51 FG, 7-12 FT, 39 rebounds (White 8, Lauder 5, Morrissey 5), 12 assists (White 6), 9 steals (White 3). Three-pointers (2-8): Lauder 1, Swift 1.
Midkota — Alex Miller 10, Tanner Overby 9, Austin Monson 5, Logan Harding 4, Brennan Ehlers 4, Tyrel Harding 4, Zach Gilbertson 4. Totals: 18-53 FG, 3-7 FT, 25 rebounds (L. Harding 6), 7 assists (Miller 3), 4 steals (Miller 2). Three-pointers (1-6): Overby 1.
Records: Ellendale 2-0; Midkota 0-2.
Carrington 54, Kidder County 37
Carrington 12 25 40 54
Kidder County 6 14 30 37
Carrington — Easton Page 21, Tysen Rosenau 9, Chase Monson 8, Taylor Skytland 7, Scott Burnham 5, Scott Engelhorn 4. Totals: 22-47 FG, 8-9 FT, 30 rebounds (Burnham 7, Monson 5), 9 assists (Monson 4), 11 steals (Page 4). Three-pointers (2-8): Skytland 1, Page 1.
Kidder County — Norman Nicholson 12, Cody Wahl 11, Keagan Foss 7, Lucas Benz 4, Jordan Leier 2, Ben Stroh 1. Totals: 15-49 FG, 6-9 FT, 30 rebounds (Foss 8, Leier 7), 5 assists (Leier 3), 5 steals (Nicholson 2). Three-pointers (1-5): Wahl 1.
Records: Carrington 2-1; Kidder County 1-3.
Sun sports writer Michael Savaloja can be reached at (701) 952-8461 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org