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JHS girls lose WDA opener

Bismarck Legacy's Kailey Weigel drives on Jamestown's Alyssa Ukestad during an opening round of the West Region Basketball Tournament in Bismarck on Thursday. WILL KINCAID / Tribune1 / 2
Bismarck Legacy's Ashley Hulm put up a shot over Jamestown's Jessa Anderson during an opening round of the West Region Basketball Tournament in Bismarck on Thursday. WILL KINCAID / Tribune2 / 2

BISMARCK—The Legacy High School girls basketball team stepped up its game defensively and Jamestown had no response in the opening round of the West Region tournament.

The Sabers forced 19 turnovers—13 in the first half—while holding the Blue Jays to 36.5-percent shooting in Legacy's 66-57 victory Thursday afternoon at the Bismarck Civic Center.

Jamestown will now face eighth-seeded Dickinson today at 4:30 in the consolation bracket, while Legacy will face Century at 2 p.m.

"After a made basket we'd try and slow them down a little bit with the press and at least make them think before Jamestown comes down in their sets," said Sabers coach Jim Petrik. "We wanted to slow them down, take time off that shot clock and hopefully force some turnovers."

Legacy had active hands all afternoon, tipping many of the Blue Jays' passes inside that either forced a turnover or made Jamestown adjust its possession on the offensive end.

"We tried being extra aggressive defensively but unfortunately we got in a lot of foul trouble tonight doing that," Petrik said, referring to the 18 personal fouls. "I'm proud my kids' fight and they found a way to win."

Saber junior Ashley Hulm got hot early scoring 10 of her teams' first 18 points to get out to a 12-point lead 10 minutes into the first half.

"We told her if you're open shoot it," Petrik said. "She had a few early buckets in the paint and that gave her some confidence."

The Blue Jays got the lead down to seven points after a quick 7-2 run, led by three baskets from Olivia Nihill. But Hulm responded with her third 3-pointer of the season to get back out in front 23-13.

The Sabers began to press the Blue Jays, which led to Jamestown passes being thrown out of bounds.

"We kind of knew it was coming, they've been doing it more towards the end of the year," said Blue Jay coach Andy Skunberg. "We struggled with it a little bit. It killed us right away and we couldn't bounce back from that."

Legacy took a 34-23 lead into the break. Overall the Sabers held Jamestown to 7 of 24 from the field (29 percent).

The Blue Jays got the Sabers lead down to eight points on three separate occasions and five times down to single digits but Legacy held on for the victory.

"Second half we did a better job of getting the ball to the middle, finishing some of the shots when we had opportunities but we couldn't handle Legacy," Skunberg said.

Along with Hulm's 26 points, Whitney Thomas scored 8 of her 17 points in the second half.

For Jamestown, it finished 19 of 52 from the floor. Courtney Peterson led with a team-high 14 points and Kameron Selvig scored 13 off the bench. Megan Gaffaney finished with nine points—five below her season-average.

"We rushed a few shots I thought," Skunberg said. "We're doing a good job for awhile getting to the hole and getting to the free-throw line. When we broke their press we got quick-shot-happy and we needed to take it to them a little more."

The Blue Jays will now turn its attention to the Midgets today. Jamestown has 23- and 32-point victories over Dickinson.

"We've got to concentrate on Dickinson," Skunberg said. "We've got to play our game and be ready to go."

Jamestown 66, Legacy 57

JAM 23 34 -- 57

LEG 34 32 -- 66

JAM—Courtney Peterson 14, Kameron Selvig 13, Megan Gaffaney 9, Olivia Nihill 8, Alyssa Ukestad 6, Katherine Horgan 5, Jessa Anderson 2. Totals: 19-52 FG, 6-19 3-PT, 13-19 FT, 38 Rebounds (Peterson 7), 19 Turnovers.

LEG—Ashley Hulm 26, Whitney Thomas 17, Ashton Sagaser 7, Mac Boone, Kailey Weigel 4, Arianna Berryhill 2. Totals: 26-63 FG, 7-18 3-PT, 7-8 FT, 35 Rebounds (Dressler 9), 18 Fouls, 13 Turnovers, 10 Steals.

Records: JAM 13-9. LEG 11-11.

Mitchell Johnson

Hometown: Enumclaw, WA; College: Central Washington University

(360) 918-1853