KC tops Ellendale for fifthSecond chance opportunities and buckets in transition is a pretty solid recipe for success when it comes to Class B boys basketball.
By: Michael Savaloja, The Jamestown Sun
Second chance opportunities and buckets in transition is a pretty solid recipe for success when it comes to Class B boys basketball.
Kidder County used both of those ingredients in the first half against Ellendale at the Jamestown Civic Center on Saturday, as the Pirates rolled 60-46 over the Cardinals in the consolation championship game of the Stutsman County Tournament.
“Taking (Ellendale’s Adam) White out of the game was our No. 1 objective in the first half, but we thought we had the ability to get out and run on them and we thought that played into our strengths a little bit,” Kidder County coach Paul Olson said. “To try to make them to be more aggressive, we needed to have an opportunity to be aggressive and we thought we had that opportunity tonight.”
The 6-foot-4 sophomore White, who averaged 18.7 points and 11.7 rebounds per game for the Cards as a freshman, got off just one shot in the entire game. He made it, but he finished with just three points and 12 defensive rebounds.
But where Ellendale really struggled in the first half was getting back on defense. Kidder County’s Jordan Leier scored six straight points in transition to close out the first period 18-10 in favor of the Pirates.
Leier scored eight points in the period — all in transition — as the Pirates successfully burned the Cards deep. Leier led the Pirates with 19 points, while teammate Ryan Sand posted 10 points and 13 rebounds.
Kidder County also got plenty of opportunities off the offensive glass, as they took a 33-19 lead into the break. Ellendale allowed nine offensive rebounds in the half with Cole Scherbenske grabbing two and Leier pulling down four to keep the Pirates’ offense alive.
“We’re not the greatest rebounding team in the world,” Olson said, “but Sand and Scherbenske seem to get pretty opportune rebounds when they needed to get them.”
Ellendale senior guard Shawn Hofer scored all nine of Ellendale’s points in the second period. Hofer led all scoring with 22 points.
Kidder County shot over 50 percent (16 of 31) in the first half, largely due to the team’s success in transition. The two teams ended up matching each other point-for-point in the second half, but the Pirates led by as many as 21 points in the third.
The two wins by Kidder County (2-3) in the tournament was what the Pirates were looking for to jumpstart their season.
“That’s what I said to them before the game,” Olson said. “I said if we can get two wins here, it’s a success for us because now the heart of our season will start here after Christmas vacation.”
Central Prairie 56, Midkota 49
Central Prairie (1-4) keeps finding someone to hit the long ball.
In recent memory, it was former Firebirds Nic Moser and Eric Knodel lighting up the Jamestown Civic Center from 3-pointer range, and that candle was passed to Alex Eissinger over the weekend during the Stutsman County Tournament.
Eissinger drilled four 3-pointers in Friday’s two-point loss to Kidder County, and in Saturday’s seventh-place contest, the junior guard went 5 of 8 from beyond 3-point range to help the Firebirds defeat Midkota by seven points.
Midkota jumped out to a 9-0 lead in the first period — the team’s first lead in six games played this season — but the Mustangs struggled offensively, shooting just 28 percent which included converting just 6 of 20 3-point attempts.
Eissinger finished the game with a game-high 22 points. Dalton Ehlers (14 points) and Christian Leininger (10) each hit double figures in scoring for the Mustangs (0-6).
Stutsman County Tournament
At Jamestown Civic Center
No. 7 Central Prairie 56, No. 8 Midkota 49
Central Prairie 10 25 40 56
Midkota 14 24 33 49
Central Prairie — Alex Eissinger 22, Brett Williams 9, Avery Foerderer 7, Hunter Larson 7, Donavan Moser 4, Zach Meyer 3, Wyatt Staloch 2, Logan Hoffmann 2. Totals: 20-59 FG, 9-15 FT, 48 rebounds (Meyer 11), 14 fouls, 10 assists (Larson 3), 14 turnovers, 5 blocks (5 with 1), 6 steals (Larson 3). Three-pointers: (7-19) Eissinger 5, Williams 1, Larson 1.
Midkota — Dalton Ehlers 14, Christian Leininger 10, Dakota Hoyt 9, Austin Monson 9, Tyler Walen 6, Brandt Ronningen 1. Totals: 16-58 FG, 11-16 FT, 40 rebounds (Hoyt 12, Leininger 10), 13 assists (Monson 5), 11 turnovers, 2 blocks (Ehlers 2), 5 steals (Hoyt 2, Walen 2). Three-pointers: (6-20) Ehlers 4, Leininger 2.
Records: Central Prairie 1-4; Midkota 0-6.
No. 6 Kidder County 60, No. 4 Ellendale 46
Kidder Co. 18 33 44 60
Ellendale 10 19 30 46
Kidder Co. — Jordan Leier 19, Zach Six 14, Ryan Sand 10, Cole Scherbenske 8, Ben Steinolfson 7, Walker Brandt 2. Totals: 23-54 FG, 14-24 FT, 36 rebounds (Sand 12), 15 fouls, 15 assists (3 with 4), 17 turnovers, 1 block (Sand 1), 11 steals (Leier 4). Three-pointers: (0-4).
Ellendale — Shawn Hofer 22, Zach Dathe 13, Chase Durheim 4, Adam White 3, James Johnston 2, Logan Wang 2. Totals: 16-45 FG, 12-18 FT, 32 rebounds (White 12), 22 fouls (Johnston), 9 assists (Hofer 3), 23 turnovers, 6 blocks (White 5), 11 steals (Durheim 4). Three-pointers: (2-7) Hofer 1, Durheim 1.
Records: Kidder Co. 2-3; Ellendale 2-2.
Sun sports writer Michael Savaloja can be reached at (701) 952-8461 or by email at email@example.com