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Ellendale wins Stutsman title 54-42 over M/P-B

The Cardinals have now won four of the last eight Stutsman County Tournaments.

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Rylen Wick of Medina/PIngree-Buchanan goes up for a rebound with Ellendale's Mason Molan during the championship game of the Stutsman County Tournament on Saturday at the Jamestown Civic Center. John M. Steiner / The Jamestown Sun

The Ellendale Cardinals boys basketball team have now won back-to-back Stutsman County Tournament titles after defeating the Medina/Pingree-Buchanan Thunder 54-42 Saturday, Jan. 8, at the Jamestown Civic Center.

The Cardinals (6-0) have now won four titles over the last eight seasons, with the previous two coming in 2015 and 2016. The Thunder (4-2) attempted to claw their way back in the second half, with the game sitting at 34-28 late in the third, but Ellendale responded to every Thunder run.

The Cardinals’ Levi Reis said that he and his team were excited about remaining undefeated and winning their second consecutive title.

“It feels pretty good,” Reis said. “It feels like we deserved it.”

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The Ellendale Cardinals pose with the plaque after winning the 2022 Stutsman County boys basketball tournament. The Cardinals beat M/P-B 54-42 in the title game on Jan. 8. Max O'Neill/Jamestown Sun.

The Thunder’s Rylen Wick knocked down a three with 5:35 to go in the third quarter to make it 30-22. The Thunder’s Hunter Mitchell was left all alone under the hoop bringing his team closer, to make the score 35-24 with just over four minutes to go in the third. The Thunder’s Gage Magstadt hit a three from the top of the arc to bring the game closer to 34-28 late in the third.

The Thunder’s ability to bring the game closer in the third quarter came down to rebounding the ball well, according to head coach Bob Young.

“I think we just said that we needed to bring maximum effort,” Young said. “We needed to rebound better. I thought that when we got rebounds off the glass we were able to get out and get into some open space and get into our offense quicker. When we struggled to rebound though, this is the team you can’t do that against.”

The Thunder’s Sawyer Wanzek hit a runner with just under six minutes to go to make it 42-30. The Cardinals’ Anton Geller hit the stop-and-pop jumper to make it 46-33 with 4:52 to go. The Cardinals’ Scott Wagner fought through contact down low to hit the basket to make it 48-38 with four minutes to go in the game. Wagner hit the hook shot to stretch his team’s lead to 50-38 with 1:55 to go.

The Cardinals took an 8-7 lead midway through the first after Anton Geller hit an open 3-pointer in the corner, which would be the start of a 14-0 run that stretched their lead to 17-7.

The Thunder put an end to the run at the 5:46 mark of the second quarter when Rylen Wick hit a bucket and drew the foul to make it 17-11. The Thunder worked to bring the game closer when Hunter Mitchell stole a ball at midcourt and hit the layup at the cup to make the score 26-17 with 50 seconds left to go in the first half.

The Thunder giving up the 14-0 first-half run was frustrating for Young and his team.

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“It felt like there was a lid on the rim, to be honest,” Young said. “We felt like we were getting really good shots. We felt like we were getting to areas on the court that we wanted to in our game plan, the ball just wouldn’t go in. That’s the way it goes sometimes.”

One of the big moments of the first half came when Wagner was called for his second foul early in the second quarter. After that, Wagner was not called for another foul the entire game, which Cardinals head coach Brian Vance said was down to his basketball IQ.

“Scotty’s a smart player, he’s been around for a long time,” Vance said. “He knows when and when not to be too aggressive early. He was a little aggressive early and then late in the game we wanted him to be more aggressive, he was passing up some shots. So, Scotty’s just a good player. He understands the game well.”

The Cardinals put their undefeated record on the line at 6 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 14, when they host Griggs-Midkota. The Thunder return to the court at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 15, when they look to get revenge over Ellendale.

“I’m looking forward to it a lot because any time you play a great team like Ellendale your team is getting better,” Young said. “So, next week, we’re going to go in and we’re going to put together a gameplan. We’re going to watch this film and the kids are going to be ready to take them on again and I think it will be a better day for us.”

EHS 54, M/P-B 42

EHS: 15 11 10 17–54

M/P-B: 7 12 9 14—42

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Points leaders:

EHS: Scott Wagner 21, Levi Reis 17, Riley Thorpe 6, Anton Geller 5, Mason Molan 3, Jack Bommersbach 2

M/P-B: Hunter Mitchell 15, Rylen Wick 9, Sawyer Wanzek 8, Josh Moser 7, Adam McClellan 3

Total stats:

EHS: 21 FGs, 8-12 FTs, 13 fouls, 3-pointers: Thorpe 2, Reis, Geller

M/P-B: 16 FGs, 4-14 FTs, 15 fouls, 3-pointers: Wanzek 2, Moser, Mitchell, Wick, McClellan

All tournament team:

Jacob Nitschke, E/K-M

Adam Nitschke, E/K-M

Jaxon Gronneberg, Griggs-Midkota

Hudson Topp, Carrington

Trevor Moos, N/G-S

Trenton Erbele, N/G-S

Josh Moser, M/P-B

Rylen Wick, M/P-B

Riley Thorpe, Ellendale

Scott Wagner, Ellendale

Best free throw shooting team: Carrington (72%)

Sportsmanship award: Griggs-Midkota

Coach of the tournament: M/P-B’s Bob Young

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Nine of the 11 members of the 2022 Stutsman County boys basketball tournament pose together after the championship game at the Jamestown Civic Center on Jan. 8. Max O'Neill/Jamestown Sun

Related Topics: PREP SPORTS
Hello,
My name is Max O'Neill. I am a Sports Reporter at The Jamestown Sun. I am a native New Yorker, who graduated from Ithaca College in 2020 with a degree in Television-Radio.
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