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STATE WRESTLING TOURNAMENTS UPDATE
— State “A” tournament, Rapid City:
Pierre qualified 13 of its 14 wrestlers for the state tournament in last Saturday’s Region 3A tournament. The Governors were the regional team champions with 198 points, followed by Aberdeen Central with 162 and Mitchell with 143 among the eight schools. The Pierre qualifiers and their place at the regional:
106: Blake Judson, fourth.
113: Kahlor Hindman, third.
120: Hayden Shaffer, second.
126: Jace Bench-Bresher, fourth.
132: Tyson Johnson, second.
138: Jack Van Camp, second.
145: Cade Hinkle, second.
152: Lee Snyder, third.
170: Maguire Raske, first.
182: Garrett Leesman, second.
195: Gage Gehring, first.
220: James Lees, second.
285: Preston Taylor, fourth.
— State “B” tournament, Rapid City:
Stanley County qualified three of its wrestlers for the state tournament out of the Region 4B tournament at Parkview Gym. Philip was the team champion followed by Custer/Edgemont and Lead-Deadwood. The SCHS qualifiers and their place at the regional:
120: Trey Frost, fourth.
138: J.D. Carter, second.
170: Reid Wieczorek, third.
— State tournaments schedule:
Friday: 10 a.m., first-round matches; 2:45 p.m., parade of athletes; 3 p.m., quarterfinal matches and first-round consolation matches; after a 20-minute break, second-round consolation matches.
Saturday: 10 a.m., semifinal matches and third-round consolation matches; after 20-minute break, fourth-round consolation matches; 6:15 p.m., championship introductions; 6:30 p.m., championship matches. (Note: Live television coverage of the championship matches on SDPB will begin at 7 p.m. CST Saturday. Throughout the weekend you can follow all weight classes’ results at www.sdpb.org.)
BASKETBALL TOURNAMENTS UPDATE
— Girls, Region 6A: The first three games will be played Monday—5 at 4, 7 at 2, 6 at 3. The next two games on Feb. 28 will be 5-4 winner at 1 and 7-2 winner vs. 6-3 winner at the higher seed. Those two winners advance to the SoDak 16 March 4. As of today, Stanley County is #7 and would play at #2 Crow Creek. Miller is 1, Cheyenne-Eagle Butte 3, Chamberlain 4, McLaughlin 5 and Mobridge-Pollock 6.
— Girls, Region 2B: On Monday Potter County defeated Leola-Frederick, 56-19, and Eureka-Bowdle ousted Sunshine Bible, 47-33. On Tuesday Sully Buttes ousted Highmore-Harrold, 61-38; Ipswich topped Potter County, 67-46; Herreid-Selby Area beat Eureka-Bowdle, 56-37, and Faulkton Area defeated Edmund Central, 61-25. The final two games tonight (Thursday)—Sully Buttes at Ipswich and Herreid-Selby Area vs. Faulkton—will determine two participants in the SoDak 16 Feb. 28.
— Girls, Class AA: The SoDak 16 games on Friday, March 1, will involve the top 16 of the 18 AA teams—16 at 1; 9 at 8; 13 at 4; 12 at 5; 14 at 3; 11 at 6; 15 at 2; 10 at 7. Those eight winners advance to the state tournament. As of today, the pairings in the SoDak 16 would have #16 Pierre at #1 O’Gorman, but #17 Watertown, currently out of the playoffs, plays Pierre tonight with that 16th and final slot at stake. As of today, Lincoln is 2, Brandon Valley 3, Harrisburg 4. Just ahead of Pierre is #15 Aberdeen Central. Along with Watertown, the other team out of the playoffs would be Spearfish.
— Boys, Region 6A: Three games will be played Tuesday—5 at 4, 7 at 2, 6 at 3 with 1 getting a bye. The final two games will be March 1 with the 5-4 winner at 1 and the 7-2 winner vs. the 6-3 winner at the higher seed. Those two winners would be SoDak 16 participants on March 5. As of today, Stanley County is #4 and would host #5 Miller. Cheyenne-Eagle Butte is 1, Chamberlain 2, Mobridge-Pollock 3, Crow Creek 6 and McLaughlin 7.
— Boys, Region 2B: Two games will be played Monday—10 at 7, 9 at 8. The next four games will be on Tuesday—9/8 winner at 1, 5 at 4, 10/7 winner at 2, 6 at 3. Those four winners would play in the final two games on March 1. That night’s two winners would be SoDak 16 participants on March 5. As of today, Sully Buttes is #1 in the region and would host the winner between 8 (Edmunds Central) and 9 (Sunshine Bible) Tuesday. Highmore-Harrold is 2, Leola-Frederick 3, Potter County 4, Herreid-Selby Area 5, Ipswich 6, Faulkton Area 7, Eureka-Bowdle 10.
— Boys, Class AA: The SoDak 16 games on Saturday, March 2, will involve the top 16 of the 18 AA teams—16 at 1; 9 at 8; 13 at 4; 12 at 5; 14 at 3; 11 at 6; 15 at 2; 10 at 7. Those eight winners advance to the state tournament. As of today, the pairings in the SoDak 16 would send #15 Pierre to #2 Yankton. Lincoln is 1, O’Gorman 3, Brandon Valley 4. Right behind Pierre is Mitchell at #16, and those two teams play each other Saturday afternoon. The teams out of the postseason would be Spearfish and Douglas.
PIERRE GOVERNORS SPORTS ROUNDUP
This week’s schedules:
Friday-Saturday: at state tournament, Rapid City
Boys basketball: Thursday, at Watertown, 7 p.m.; Saturday, at Mitchell, 1 p.m.
Girls basketball: Thursday, home vs. Watertown, 7 p.m.; Saturday, at Huron, 7 p.m.
Boys basketball: The Governors lost to Brookings, 70-61. Grey Zabel scored 22 and Garrett Stout 18. Saturday’s game with Sioux Falls Lincoln was cancelled. On Tuesday the boys lost to Aberdeen Central, 60-44, and now stand at 4-13 for the year. It was only Aberdeen’s second win of the season. Pierre was down 12-0 to start the game and also saw Aberdeen go on a 20-2 run in the third period that put the game out of reach. Grey Zabel was high scorer with 10 points as Pierre suffered its ninth straight loss.
Girls basketball: The Lady Govs lost to Brookings, 66-48. Emily Mikkelsen had 20 points and Caytee Williams nine. On Tuesday the girls defeated Aberdeen Central, 48-42, for their third win of the season along with 14 losses. Mack Rath had 12 points and Emily Mikkelsen 10 for Pierre. The girls have a chance to solidify a playoff spot when they take on one-win Watertown tonight.
STANLEY COUNTY BUFFALOES SPORTS ROUNDUP
This week’s schedules:
Friday-Saturday: at state tournament, Rapid City.
Boys basketball: Thursday, home vs. Winner; Friday, at Kadoka Area; Tuesday, Region 6A first-round game.
Girls basketball: Thursday, home vs. Winner; Friday, at Mobridge-Pollock; Monday, at Region 6A first-round game.
Boys basketball: The Buffaloes head into their last two regular-season games with an 8-10 record. SCHS lost to No. 1 “B” team White River, 73-57, as Joey Fischer had 26 points and Lathan Prince 13. On Monday the Buffs lost to Miller, 68-56.
Girls basketball: In their only game this week the Lady Buffs fell to a 2-16 record with a 56-19 loss to Chamberlain.
SULLY BUTTES CHARGERS SPORTS ROUNDUP
This week’s schedules:
Friday-Saturday: at state tournament, Rapid City.
Boys basketball: Tuesday, home in Region 2B second-round game.
Girls basketball: Thursday, at Ipswich, 7 p.m., in Region 2B third-round game (winner to SoDak 16 Feb. 28).
Boys basketball: The Chargers defeated Faulkton Area, 58-46, last Friday. On Monday in the Civic Arena in Aberdeen, the Chargers defeated Aberdeen Christian, 59-54, in overtime. Nick Wittler hit three of his 34 points with 24 seconds left in regulation time to force overtime. In the extra period Sebastian Frost started with a three-pointer, and the team went on to sink six out of six free throws to clinch it. Cam Ogle scored 11. Sully Buttes stands at 16-3 heading into Region 2 play. Friday’s scheduled varsity game vs. Eureka-Bowdle has been cancelled because of a lack of players available to their team although there will be a JV game in Onida.
Girls basketball: The Charger girls lost their regular-season finale to Faulkton Area, 64-45, finishing with an 11-8 record. SBHS opened postseason play Tuesday as the #4 seed in Region 2B and ousted Highmore-Harrold, 61-38. Lauren Wittler had 22 points and Kendra Kleven 13 as SBHS improved to 12-8 for the year. The Chargers play at #1 Ipswich tonight (Thursday) with the winner advancing to the SoDak 16.
“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
— Leo Buscaglia
June 8: Frank Turner/Jasmin Fosheim.
June 8: Joseph Rezac/Brittanie Blaseg.
Aug. 31: Devin Maki/Karlie Warne.
Oahe Lady Capitals: The girls varsity lost to Sioux Falls, 10-2, despite 27 saves from Abigail Stewart-Fromm. The goals were scored by Ashton Lee and Amy Gilkerson. The Lady Capitals defeated Rushmore, 9-3, behind Lee’s hat trick, two goals each from Jessa McTighe and Gilkerson, and single goals from Brooklynn Herman and Jenna Keyser. Stewart-Fromm had 22 saves. On Sunday the unbeaten Aberdeen girls beat Oahe, 16-1, with Gilkerson scoring the only goal. The girls varsity now awaits the state tournament in Brookings March 1-3.
SDAHA girls varsity standings (wins-losses-ties-OT losses=points): Aberdeen 16-0-0-0 32, Sioux Falls 14-2-0-0 28, Mitchell 11-4-0-0 22, Brookings 10-5-0-1 21, Sioux Center 8-7-0-0 16 Watertown 6-9-0-0 13, Oahe 3-13-0-0 6, Huron 2-13-1-0 5, Rushmore 0-15-1-0 1.
Oahe Capitals: The Capitals defeated Watertown, 7-3, as six different men got into the scoring column. Caden Davis tallied twice and Elliot Leif, Raef Briggs, Cole Nelson, Talon Griese and Spencer Wedin once each. Tate Mueller made 22 saves. On Sunday the Caps edged Aberdeen, 6-5, in an overtime thriller. Mueller accomplished 16 saves. Wedin accomplished a hat trick, Davis scored twice and Griese once. Aberdeen scored to take the lead, 5-4, in the final minute of regulation, but the Caps got a miracle. Andy Gordon as an extra man raced on to the ice and passed to Griese, who passed to Davis for a game-tying score with six seconds left. In O.T. Wedin’s third goal came on a power play just 1:12 into extra time. The Capitals hit the road to Brookings for a 3:30 faceoff Saturday and on to Yankton for a noon game Sunday.
SDAHA boys varsity standings (wins-losses-ties-OT losses=points): Sioux Falls 14-0-2-0 30, Oahe 2-2-1-0 25, Rushmore 12-4-0-0 24, Huron 8-6-1-0 17, Sioux Center 7-7-1-0 15, Brookings 7-8-0-0 14, Mitchell 5-10-0-0 10, Watertown 4-8-1-1 10, Aberdeen 3-9-0-2 8, Yankton 0-15-0-0 0. (Note; Mitchell is banned from state tournament play.)
Rapid City Rush: In a three-game series against Idaho, the Rush lost 3-2 in overtime, lost 2-1 and won 3-2 in overtime. Rapid City has now played in 18 overtime games so far this season. The Rush are home against Atlanta last night, Friday and Saturday.
Sioux Falls Stampede: On a weekend trip to Michigan the Stampede lost to Team USA, 4-1; lost to Muskegon, 5-3, and scored two third-period goals to beat Muskegon, 3-2. Sioux Falls plays at Sioux City Friday and Sunday. In between will be a Saturday home date with Omaha.
Gillette Wild (Coleman Varty): Gillette split a weekend pair with Butte, winning 3-2 in a shootout and losing 7-4. In the win Coleman had the team’s first goal of the game, his 27th of the season. In the loss he had an assist, his 40th of the year. Gillette is home for two this weekend vs. Yellowstone.
Minnesota Wild: The Wild is now 1-6-3 in its last 10 games after losing to New Jersey in overtime, 5-4; losing to St. Louis, 4-0, and losing to Anaheim, 4-0. Minnesota plays at the New York Rangers tonight, at Detroit Friday, at home vs. St. Louis Sunday and at Winnipeg Tuesday.
Minnesota United FC: The Loons are still unbeaten after three preseason matches. After 0-0 deadlocks with Phoenix and Houston, Minnesota United FC defeated New England, 1-0, Saturday. The preseason schedule ends against New York City FC last night and Orlando Saturday. The regular-season MLS opener is at Vancouver March 2.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“Take what you already have, what you already know, what you’re already good at and use it to help other people.”
— Bryan Skavnak
PGA Champions Tour (Tom Byrum): In the Chubb Classic at Naples, Fla., Tom tied for 34th place and earned $9,632 for his 6-under round of 67-65-75=207 on the par-71 course. His money earnings for the 2019 tour through two events total $30,814. After this weekend off the Champions Tour players go to Tucson for the Cologuard Classic March 1-3.
AAF games on TV this weekend:
Saturday, 7 p.m.: Memphis at Orlando, NFL Network.
Sunday, 3 p.m.: Birmingham at Atlanta, CBSSN.
Sunday, 7 p.m.: San Antonio at San Diego, NFL Network.
Sioux Falls Storm: The Indoor Football League season is here. The Storm open the season at Cedar Rapids Saturday, followed by a bye weekend and two more road games. The first home game won’t happen until after the basketball tournaments at the Denny Sanford Premier Center are over. That will be March 22 against Quad City.
DID YOU KNOW?
There are three things the human brain cannot resist noticing—food, attractive people and danger.
Midco Sports Network live games this week:
Thursday, 7 p.m.: men’s basketball, SDSU-Purdue Fort Wayne.
Thursday, 7 p.m.: women’s basketball, USD-Denver (MSN2).
Friday, 5:30 p.m.: women’s basketball, USF-Augustana.
Friday, 7:30 p.m.: men’s basketball, USF-Augustana.
Saturday, 11 a.m.: women’s basketball, UND-Denver.
Saturday, 1 p.m.: women’s basketball, NDSU-Omaha (MSN2).
Saturday, 4 p.m.: men’s basketball, USD-SDSU.
Saturday, 4 p.m.: men’s basketball, NDSU-Omaha (MSN2).
Saturday, 7 p.m.: men’s hockey, UND-Minnesota Duluth.
Sunday, 1 p.m.: women’s basketball, USD-SDSU.
Sioux Falls Skyforce: Idle last week during the all-star break, the Skyforce resume play at Long Island tonight, in Canada against the Raptors Sunday and at home Tuesday against Windy City.
Minnesota Timberwolves: The Wolves defeated Houston, 121-111, just prior to the NBA all-star break. They are back on the court Friday at New York, Saturday at Milwaukee, Monday at Sacramento and Wednesday at Atlanta. Who in the NBA office schedules road trips like that?!
THOUGHT FOR TODAY
“Genius without education is like silver in the mine.”
— Benjamin Franklin
Minnesota Twins (times CST):
Saturday: at Baltimore 12:05; Tampa Bay 5:05.
Sunday: at Boston, 12:05.
Monday: Baltimore, 12:05.
Tuesday: Pittsburgh, 12:05.
Wednesday: at Philadelphia, 12:05.
Thursday: at Tampa Bay, 5:35
Colorado Rockies (times MST):
Saturday: at Arizona 1:10.
Sunday: Seattle 1:10.
Monday: at Kansas City 1:05.
Tuesday: Cleveland 1:10.
Wednesday: Los Angeles Angels 1:10.
Thursday: at Los Angeles Dodgers 1:05.
Chicago Cubs (times CST):
Saturday: Milwaukee 2:05.
Sunday: at San Francisco 2:05.
Monday: at Los Angeles Dodgers 2:05; San Diego 2:05.
Tuesday: Arizona 2:05.
Wednesday: at Texas 2:05.
Thursday: Oakland 2:05.
Live spring training games on MLB Network this week:
Saturday, noon: New York Yankees-Boston.
Sunday, noon: New York Yankees-Tampa Bay.
Monday, noon: New York Mets-Houston.
Tuesday, noon: Detroit-New York Mets.
Wednesday, noon: Miami-New York Mets.
Pierre Trappers: New to the Trappers roster this season will be sophomore pitcher Steven Lacey of Holmes Community College. His hometown is Madison, Miss.
1 day: Pierre Players’ “Bill W. and Dr. Bob” (Feb. 22-24, 28-March 2).
1 day: State wrestling tournaments, Rapid City (Feb. 22-23).
1 day: Summit League indoor track-field championships, Brookings (Feb. 22-23).
2 days: Minnesota Twins spring training opener (Feb. 23).
3 days: The Oscars, ABC-TV (Feb. 24).
7 days: Riggs High talent show (Feb. 28).
8 days: Zesto opens (March 1).
8 days: Girls varsity state hockey tournament, Brookings (March 1-3).
9 days: Minnesota Loons season opener (March 2).
9 days: NSIc men’s/women’s basketball tournaments, Sioux Falls (March 2-5).
14 days: State “B” girls basketball tournament, Huron (March 7-9).
14 days: Georgia Morse Middle School band/chorus concert and art show (March 7).
ISN’T IT THE TRUTH!
“Life’s tragedy is that we get old too soon and wise too late.”
— Benjamin Franklin
COLLEGE SPORTS ROUNDUP
South Dakota State wrestling (Aric Williams): The Jackrabbits lost a 31-10 dual at North Dakota State as the Bison won eight weight classes. The only SDSU points came from Zach Carlson’s tech fall at 184 pounds and Henry Pohlmeyer’s pin at 149. A team point was then deducted. Aric lost his 141-pound match by a 9-5 decision. SDSU wrestles at Oklahoma Friday and at home vs. West Virginia Sunday at 6 p.m.
Augustana wrestling (Jebben Keyes): The Vikings lost to #1 St. Cloud State, 31-3. Jebben did not wrestle. The only Viking points came from #12 Lukas Poloncic’s upset decision over #2 Kolton Eischens. Augie sends wrestlers to the Super Regional at Moorhead Saturday.
Northern wrestling: Idle last week, the Wolves send wrestlers to the Super Regional at Moorhead Saturday.
North Dakota men’s hockey: The Fighting Hawks split at Western Michigan, winning 5-1 and losing 4-2. Now 14-13-2 overall and 8-9-1 in the NCHC, North Dakota is home against Minnesota-Duluth Friday and Saturday. The latter game will be on Midco Sports Network at 7 p.m.
South Dakota track-field (Madason Tessier, Maddy McClure): At the Nebraska tune-up meet Madason placed third in the 60-meter hurdles in :08.93. Chris Nilsen and Helen Falda won their respective pole vault events. Ethan Fenchel placed third and set a school record of 68’11 3/4″ in the weight throw. Macy Heinz set a school record of 1:32.71 in the 600. Joe Reagan won the long jump at 24’7″ and now has the best distance in the Summit League, and it is the third-best all-time at USD. The Coyotes compete at the Summit League championships in Brookings Friday and Saturday.
South Dakota State track-field (Riley Sears, Rachel Propst, Addison Eisenbeisz): At the SDSU last-chance meet Riley earned his second career win, taking the high jump at 6’7 1/2″. Addy got her first career win in the high jump with a personal-best leap of 5’7″, ranking her eighth all-time in the SDSU recordbooks. She also placed third in the long jump at 17’1 1/4″. Rachel placed fourth in the 800 in 2;21.26. Riley and Rachel were among the 18 SDSU seniors honored at their last home regular-season meet. The Jacks compete in the Summit League championships in Brookings Friday and Saturday.
South Dakota Mines track-field (Theron Singleton, Erick Colman): Neither Pierre athlete competed in the Stinger Open at BHSU. The Hardrockers go next to the RMAC conference meet in Alamosa, Colo., Friday and Saturday.
Black Hills State track-field (Kelsey Van Den Hemel, Allan McDonnell): At their own Stinger Open the Yellowjacket men and women both won their divisions, the men among 10 schools and the women among eight. Allan won the high jump at 6’6 1/4″ and placed fifth in the long jump at 20’1″. BHSU goes Friday and Saturday to the RMAC conference meet in Alamosa, Colo.
Incarnate Word women’s basketball (Liz Holter): The Cardinals defeated Southeast Louisiana, 76-69. Liz was 3-of-6 in field goals, including 3-of-4 in three-pointers, for nine points with three rebounds and two steals. In a 71-50 loss to Abilene Christian Liz was 4-of-7 in field goals, including 4-of-6 in threes, for a team-high 12 points with two assists and a steal. UIW played Lamar last night and goes to Stephen F. Austin Saturday.
Tennessee women’s basketball (Caleb Currier): The Lady Vols had a winning week, beating Auburn, 73-62, and Missouri, 62-60. Now 17-8 overall and 6-6 in the SEC, Tennessee plays at Texas A&M tonight (Thursday) and at home Sunday against South Carolina.
Augustana men’s basketball: The Vikings’ freshman-laden squad had a double-winning weekend. Augie won over Minnesota State-Mankato in double overtime, 97-90. A.J. Plitzuweit scored 25, Michael Schaefer 25, Matt Cartwright 17 and Trevor Hanson 17. In an 83-78 win over Concordia-St. Paul Cartwright scored 28, Plitzuweit 14 and Tyler Riemersma 13. Now 16-10 overall and 12-8 in the NSIC, Augie is home this weekend against USF and Southwest Minnesota State to end the regular season.
Augustana women’s basketball (Katie Bourk): The Viking women defeated Minnesota State, 77-76, as Lynsey Prosser scored 26. She had 21 in a 69-61 loss to Concordia-St. Paul. The women are 20-9 overall and 12-8 in the NSIC as they await regular-season finales at home vs. USF and Southwest Minnesota State.
Northern men’s basketball (Lincoln Jordre): The Wolves played two more tight games. In a 72-70 win over Minnesota-Duluth, Gabe King scored 18, Justin Decker 15 and Ian Smith 14. NSU lost to St. Cloud State, 65-62, led by King’s 20. Now 20-6 overall and 16-4 in the NSIC, Northern ends the regular season at Mary Friday and Minot State Saturday.
Northern women’s basketball (Rachel Guthmiller): The NSU women fell to 9-17 overall and 6-14 in the NSIC with a 74-56 loss to Minnesota-Duluth and a 70-43 loss to St. Cloud State. In the UMD game Tori Mekash led NSU with 13. Rachel got in for four minutes and made her only field-goal attempt for two points. She played one minute in the St. Cloud game. Brianna Kusler was high with 13. NSU plays at Mary Friday and at Minot State Saturday.
University of Sioux Falls women’s basketball: The Cougar women defeated Winona State, 70-68, led by Anna Goodhope’s 30 points. USF also won over Upper Iowa, 69-47, led by Kaely Hummel with 20. Now 19-7 overall and 14-6 in the NSIC, USF goes down the street to Augustana Friday and to Wayne State Saturday.
University of Sioux Falls men’s basketball: The USF men won a double-overtime thriller over Winona State, 84-80, as Drew Guebert scored 33 and Trevon Evans 25. In an 80-60 win over Upper Iowa, Evans had 28 and Guebert 20. Now 17-9 overall and 12-8 in the NSIC, USF plays this weekend at Augustana and Wayne State.
South Dakota Mines men’s basketball: The Hardrockers lost at Chadron State, 69-65, led by Jack Fiddler with 17 and Mitchell Sueker with 15. In an 80-60 loss to Metro State, Sueker scored 19. Now 11-16 overall and 8-11 in the RMAC, Mines is home this weekend against UC-Colorado Springs and Colorado Mines.
South Dakota Mines women’s basketball: Sami Steffeck led Mines with 21 in a 64-52 win over Chadron State, and she had 22 in a 70-58 loss to Metro State. Now 9-14 overall and 6-13 in the RMAC, the Hardrocker women host UC-Colorado Springs Friday and Colorado Mines Saturday.
Mount Marty women’s basketball: The Lancer women defeated Dakota State, 94-68, and lost to Concordia (Neb.) to end the season at 15-14 overall and 8-14 in the GPAC. They did not qualify for the league’s postseason.
Mount Marty men’s basketball: MMC ended the season with an 84-79 loss to Concordia (Neb.), led by Jailen Billings’ 31 points. The Lancers finish the season at 6-23 overall and 2-18 in the GPAC, missing out on the league’s playoffs.
South Dakota State women’s basketball (Sydney Palmer): The Jackrabbits dominated NDSU, 88-48, led by Macy Miller with 30. Sydney was 2-of-2 (1-of-1 in threes) for five points with one steal, one rebound and wo assists. SDSU took a 20-6 record, 12-1 in the Summit, into last night’s game vs. Purdue-Fort Wayne and hosts USD Sunday.
South Dakota State men’s basketball: The Jacks’ two games last week were mirror opposites of each other. In an 85-84 loss to Omaha SDSU blew a 16-point lead and lost when Omaha’s Mitch Hahn went baseline to baseline and hit a game-winning jumper at the buzzer. David Jenkins scored 34, and Mike Daum had 29 points and 12 rebounds. At the point SDSU led by 16, Omaha went on a sudden 18-0 run to get back into the game. In Fargo Saturday it was NDSU which led by 17 points, but when the Bison made only one of two free throws with 0:03 left, SDSU got a miracle shot from Jenkins from just inside the center line. It banked in to win the game, 78-77. That was SDSU’s only lead of the entire game. Daum had 31 points and 12 rebounds and Jenkins 24 points. Now 20-7 overall and 10-2 in the Summit, SDSU hosts Purdue-Fort Wayne tonight and USD Saturday.
South Dakota women’s basketball (Chloe Lamb, Ciara Duffy): The Coyotes won big on the road at Western Illinois, 83-61. Ciara was 7-of-11 (4-of-7 in threes) for 18 points with seven rebounds and four assists. Chloe went 7-of-10 (3-of-5 in threes) for 17 points with four boards and two assists. Now 23-3 overall and 11-1 in the Summit, USD hosts Denver tonight and goes to SDSU Sunday.
South Dakota men’s basketball: The Coyotes won at Western Illinois, 80-67, and were 10-15 overall, 4-8 in the Summit, heading into last night’s game vs. Denver. In the win Trey Burch-Manning had 20 points and nine rebounds and Stanley Umude 17 points. USD plays at SDSU Saturday.
Dakota State women’s basketball: The Lady Ts lost to Mount Marty, 94-68, and lost to Bellevue, 83-45. DSU finished the regular season at 4-24 overall and 3-11 in the NSAA. In the first round of the NSAA playoffs Tuesday, DSU had to face Bellevue again and lost this time by a 65-49 score. The season ends with a 4-25 record.
North Star Athletic Association women’s basketball: The NSAA postseason tournament concludes in Watertown. The Saturday semifinals have Mayville State vs. Presentation at 1 p.m. and Valley City State vs. Bellevue at 3 p.m. The championship game is at 1 p.m. Sunday.
Dakota State men’s basketball: The Trojans lost to Bellevue, 63-46, to finish the regular season 9-21 overall and 4-10 in the NSAA. DSU opened the conference playoffs at Presentation last night. The semifinals games will be at Watertown Saturday night with the championship game at 3 p.m. Sunday.
Black Hills State men’s basketball: The Yellowjackets lost to Metro State, 72-51, led by Dez Stoudamire with 14. He had 23 and Stefan Desnica scored 20 in a 77-71 win over Chadron State. Now 14-9 overall and 13-6 in the RMAC, BHSU hosts Colorado Mines Friday and UC-Colorado Springs Saturday.
Black Hills State women’s basketball (Racquel Wientjes Remi Wientjes): The BHSU women lost to Metro State, 62-50. Racquel was 3-of-15 from the field, including 1-of-3 in threes, and 2-of-3 at the line for nine points with three boards, one assist and a block. In an 85-57 win over Chadron State, Racquel had a team-high 19 points, going 5-of-12 (1-of-2 in threes) and 8-of-9 along with three assists and two steals. The win was the 300th career win for BHSU coach Mark Nore. Now 14-9 overall and 10-9 in the RMAC, BHSU hosts Colorado Mines and UC-Colorado Springs this weekend.
Dakota Wesleyan women’s basketball: The defending national champions won their last two regular-season games to finish at 26-4 overall and 18-4 in the GPAC. DWU beat Valley City State, 80-65 as Rylie Osthus had 24 points and Kynedi Cheeseman 18. In a 65-37 win over Doane, Cheeseman scored 25. The Tiger women, seeded #3 in the league playoffs, hosted #6 Morningside last night. That winner will play #2 Northwestern or #7 Midland in the semifinals Saturday. The championship game is Tuesday.
Dakota Wesleyan men’s basketball: DWU defeated Valley City State, 93-977, as Ty Hoglund scored 40 and Nick Harden 24. In a 71-67 win over Doane, Harden scored 24 and Hoglund 23. DWU finished the regular season 21-8 overall and 13-7 in the GPAC. The Tigers, seeded #4, hosted #5 Northwestern last night in the league first round. That winner plays #1 Morningside or #8 Concordia in the semis Saturday. The championship game is Tuesday.
South Dakota State baseball (Landon Badger, Quinn Reimers): The Jackrabbits opened the season taking two out of three from Tennessee-Martin. Landon is a junior outfielder and Quinn a junior pitcher. Other South Dakotans on the SDSU roster: Colton Cox, redshirt-freshman outfielder, Aberdeen Roncalli; Brett Mogan, junior pitcher, Dell Rapids; Tyler Olmstead, junior pitcher, Sioux Falls Washington; Cody Carlson, sophomore pitcher, Rapid City Central; Chase Kortan, redshirt-freshman outfielder, Bon Homme; Riley McSherry, freshman pitcher, Rapid City Central. SDSU beat UT-Martin, 15-3, in the opener last weekend. Landon’s RBI double scored the season’s first run, and he scored the second himself. He went 2-for-4 with two runs scored and one walk. Neither Pierre man played in Saturday’s 5-4 loss. In Sunday’s 7-1 win Landon walked twice and got one RBI on a bases-loaded walk. Quinn pitched one inning in relief, facing five batters. He gave up two hits and one earned run while retiring three players on ground balls. Now 2-1, SDSU goes to Port Charlotte, Fla., this weekend for two games vs. Florida International and two vs. Northeastern.
Northern baseball (Spencer Sarringar): The Wolves will open their season with 11 games in Kissimmee, Auburndale and Winter Haven, Fla., starting March 1 against Texas-Tyler. Spencer is a redshirt-freshman catcher. Other South Dakotans on the NSU roster: Lucas Heiser, junior pitcher, Aberdeen Central; Isaiah Chevalier, redshirt-freshman shortstop, Brandon Valley; Zach Lanier, redshirt-freshman infielder, Harrisburg; Alex Gauer, sophomore utility player, Watertown; Brandon Kusler, freshman infielder, Aberdeen Central; Mitchell Tolk, freshman infielder, Sioux Falls Washington; Sam McMacken, sophomore first-baseman, Brookings; Brandon Ford, freshman pitcher, Sioux Falls Washington; Brock Ragatz, senior pitcher, Sioux Falls Roosevelt; Reece Ragatz, freshman third-baseman, Sioux Falls Roosevelt.
Augustana baseball (Peyton Zabel): The Vikings opened their season in Arkansas by splitting a pair of games against Lindenwood (Mo.). Augie lost the opener, 5-1, and won the second game, 12-3. Peyton made his first collegiate appearance in relief in the fifth inning of the second game just after Augie had scored five to take a 6-1 lead. He pitched two innings, allowing one earned run. With the Vikings leading 6-2, Zabel was relieved with the bases loaded, and the subsequent pitcher escaped the jam by giving up only one run to cut the lead to 6-3. The Vikings added three two-run innings the rest of the way to pad their lead. Augustana continues the season March 2-3 in Springfield, Mo., playing three games against Drury. Besides Peyton, who is a freshman, the other South Dakotans on the Augie roster: Anthony Lanier, freshman pitcher, Harrisburg; Tanner Brown, sophomore pitcher, Harrisburg; Tiegen Lindner, sophomore outfielder/utility player, Sioux Falls O’Gorman; Lucas Wylie, senior catcher, Sioux Falls Washington; Caleb Stratmoen, junior pitcher, Brookings; Jed Schmidt, sophomore pitcher/outfielder, Mitchell.
Minnesota baseball (Nolan Burchill): The Gophers won once and lost three times in their weekend in Surprise, Ariz. Minnesota split with Gonzaga, winning 8-5 and losing 6-5; lost to New Mexico, 11-1, and lost to national champ Oregon State, 13-1. In the latter game Nolan came in in relief after All-American catcher Adley Rutschman’s grand slam had given OSU a 79-1 lead in the fourth. Nolan pitched 1 2/3 innings, walked one, gave up three hits and two earned runs, struck out two, got one man on a fly ball and retired two on grounders. Minnesota goes to Texas for three against Dallas Baptist Friday night through Sunday. Nolan is a redshirt sophomore right-handed pitcher. He received a medical redshirt from the 2018 season when he was an Academic All-Big 10 selection.
South Dakota women’s golf (Katie Bartlett): The Coyote women open their season at the Edwin Katts Classic in Charleston, S.C., Sunday through Tuesday.
South Dakota State swimming (Wyatt Rumrill, Ashley Theobald): Idle last week, the Jacks are swimming through Saturday at the Summit League championships in Sioux Falls.
WORDS OF WISDOM
“You don’t choose your family. They are God’s gift to you as you are to them.”
— Desmond Tutu
Thursday, Feb. 21:
Mallori Barnett Johnson, Lynn Senftner, Felicity Cronin, John Weeldreyer, Nancy McCahren, Cade Larson, Larry Cass (#80), Pat Brown, Day Breitag, Anne Rasmussen,
Teddy Jackson, Jolee Smith, Megan Wellner, Alissa (Harter) Schumacher.
Friday, Feb. 22:
Ted Massey, Bob Stalley, Steve Radabaugh, Kevin Kalil, A. J. Rounds, Ben Jensen, Britt Palmer, Amy (Robinson) Ryan, Memphis Murphy, Kathryn Hardwick, Karly Harris, Travis Scharnweber, Luke Schuetzle, Jackie Decker, Stu Larson.
— 5th anniversary, Brennan/Amber (Russell) Priest.
Saturday, Feb. 23:
Mick Hofer, Sarah (Linn) Hyde, Kayla (Pochop) Riswold, Megan Vockrodt, Dave Bonde, Darren Larson, Renee Knapp, Nathan Bradley, Mary Carter, Anniston Lowery, Cash Anderson.
— 9th anniversary, Garrett/Adrienne James.
Sunday, Feb. 24:
Heidi Nelson, Loryn (Schuetzle) Lichty, Joe Wilson, Hope David, Michael Knudson, Jayne (Knox) Kraemer, Everett Miller, Chris Peterson, Dave Potter, Michael Authier, Zach Frisby, Phoenix Malone, Rob Stoeser, Elette (McMullen) Crain, Karin (Porter) Bartell, Piper Dooley, Brian Pope, Jane (Bartels) Cass, Andrea (Hinckley) Spaid.
Monday, Feb. 25:
Tom Gerken, Max Hunsley, Chandra (Lesmeister) Miller, Caitlyn McKay, Patsy Handcock, Christy (Sobolik) Luskey, Steve Thompson, Willie Gloe, Len Cooper, Julie Smith, Clara (Stoeser) Kinzie, Glynnes Sargent, Greg Campbell, Troy Buschbom.
Tuesday, Feb. 26:
Valerie (Coyle) Hawley, Kit Bramblee, Jill (Taylor) Bischoff, Torey Garrett, Evelynn Dekker, Tye Johnson, Zach Parsons, Stacey Mancuso, Diane Deis, Adelyn Steele, Peyton Shibley, Austin Gross, Amelia Rounds, Tyson O’Daniel, Jade Bartel, Justin Stephens.
Wednesday, Feb. 27:
Nick Marso, Sheryl Johnson, Patrick Olson, Tyson Peirce, Terry (Lamster) Horning, Seth Deal, Vada Smith, Isaiah Shoup, Macy Bryant, Sara (Stulken) Kehrwald, Steven Jonas, Amanda Barber, Jim Bright, Andrea (Viken) Urbach.
Thursday, Feb. 28:
Terry Miller, Mitch Irion, Dawn (Henderson) Holmes, Harry Decker, Helen King, Anna (Van Duzer) Yost, Karen (Van Camp) DeJabet, Kayla Klemann, Andrew Chick, Kyler Tieszen, Nancy Peck, Derek Van Roekel, Bre Ripperger.
PARKER’S PERSONAL NOTES
— Here are the classic movies on the Turner Classic Movies (TCM) channel this week as part of its “31 Days of Oscar”:
Thursday, Feb. 21:
7 p.m.: “8 1/2” (1963).
9:30 p.m.: “La Strada” (1954).
11:30 p.m.: “Cool Hand Luke” (1967).
1:45 a.m.: “Papillon” (1973).
Friday, Feb. 22:
7 p.m.: “Mutiny on the Bounty” (1962).
10:15 p.m.: “The Caine Mutiny” (1954).
12:30 a.m.: “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” (1966).
3 a.m.: “The Taming of the Shrew” (1967).
Saturday, Feb. 23:
7 p.m.: “A Star Is Born” (1937).
9 p.m.: “A Star Is Born” (1954).
12:15 a.m.: “The Treasure of the Sierra Madre” (1948).
2:30 a.m.: “Key Largo” (1948).
Sunday, Feb. 24:
7 p.m.: “The Broadway Melody” (1929).
9 p.m.: “Grand Hotel” (1932).
11 p.m.: “King Solomon’s Mines” (1950).
1 a.m.: “Eskimo” (1933).
Monday, Feb. 25:
7 p.m.: “The Public Enemy: (1931).
8:45 p.m.: “Little Caesar” (1930).
10:15 p.m.: “Citizen Kane” (1941).
12:30 a.m: “Here Comes Mr. Jordan” (1941).
Tuesday, Feb. 26:
7 p.m.: “Gaslight” (1944).
9:15 p.m.: “Anastasia” (1958).
11:15 p.m.: “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” (1969).
1:15 a.m.: “The Professionals” (1966).
Wednesday, Feb. 27:
7 p.m.: “The Human Comedy” (1943).
9:15 p.m.: “Skippy” (1931).
11 p.m.: “From Here to Eternity” (1953).
1:15 a.m.: “A Farewell to Arms” (1932).
— As the Pierre Governors head west to chase yet another state wrestling championship, look at what Bismarck High School’s Demons have accomplished. In 60 years of wrestling at that school, the Demons have never finished lower than third place in the state tournament—37 titles, 15 runners-up spots and eight third-place finishes. That adds up to 60. North Dakota has had a dual state tournament for 20 years, and Bismarck has dominated there, too, winning it 15 times and finishing second the other five years.
NEWS OF PEOPLE AND EVENTS
Our sympathy to the Garrett family. Sharla passed away Tuesday night in Sioux Falls after battling cancer this past year. On a CaringBridge site her son, Torey, said his mom had been planning to return to work this week, but last week she and her husband, Brad, were given a chance to fly to Panama City, Fla., to spend a week on the beach with friends. They enjoyed a couple days there, but Sharla began feeling worse Saturday, so arrangements were made to get back to Sioux Falls quickly, and they arrived Monday night. On Tuesday morning at a doctor’s appointment they learned Sharla’s leukemia had returned. Family members were able to get to Sioux Falls quickly, and they had a chance to spend quality time with her in the intensive care unit before she passed away peacefully in her sleep that evening. Funeral arrangements will be announced by Torey on the CaringBridge site as soon as details are available.
Jean Denton will be retiring from teaching at the end of the school year at St. Joseph Elementary School. She submitted her resignation to the school board last week. She taught eight years at Washington Elementary School and now is in her 35th year at St. Joseph.
Named Athletes of the Week by the Pierre Athletic Coaches Association last week were Blake Judson of the wrestling team and the entire gymnastics team.
Wilma McKellips, 94, Alcester, widow of the late Roger McKellips, long-time legislator and Democratic Party leader and gubernatorial candidate, died Feb. 13 at Dow Rummel Village in Sioux Falls. She was married to Roger McKellips for 74 years before his death. Mrs. McKelllips is survived by two daughters, a son, seven grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild. Services were held Monday at the United Church of Christ in Alcester.
Meredith Lee and Jesse Roebuck were married Feb. 16, and, yes, it was an outdoor wedding, held in the Black Hills west of Rapid City.
Sean Knoblauch, son of Cristin (McKeever) and Ray Knoblauch of Coon Rapids, Minn., and grandson of Juanita McKeever and the late Patrick McKeever, is one of five players who signed their letters of intent to attend Loyola University in Chicago and play soccer there beginning this fall. Sean, a 6’0″ midfielder, spent three years playing his high school soccer at Shattuck St. Mary’s Academy in Faribault, Minn. He has also been a member of the U.S. Soccer Developmental Academy for five years.
Services for Charlie Miller, 63, Onida, who died Feb. 11 at Avera McKennan Hospital in Sioux Falls, were held Feb. 16 at the Onida United Methodist Church. He graduated from Sully Buttes High School in 1974, then attended Lake Area Technical Institute in Watertown. He married Arlene Hrdlicka in 1978. Charlie worked for DeSautell Construction, Lamb’s Discount and for more than 25 years for Cenex Harvest States. He is survived by his son, Scott Miller of Wessington Springs; his daughter, Laura Jacobson and her husband Thad of Florence; his mother, Lorraine Miller of Onida; two grandsons; his sister, Brenda King and her husband Spike of Blunt, and a special friend, Kerrie Hawkinson of Hoven.
Riggs High alumna Stacey Stofferahn Uthe stars in the role of Mimi in “La Boheme” Friday night and Sunday afternoon at the Thomas Jefferson Independent Day School concert hall in Joplin, Mo. This is just another one of Stacey’s many leading opera roles and solo appearances with symphony orchestras across the country and around the world. Stacey lives in Kansas City where she manages a thriving private voice studio.
Our sympathy to Lisa Bohannon of Buckeye, Ariz. (the former Lisa Lyscio, who taught at Riggs High School in the ’90s). This week Lisa lost her mother to Alzheimer’s disease just hours shy of her 89th birthday.
Aksel Campbell, grandson of Jack and Lillian Campbell of Onida, plays on the club hockey team at Colorado State. His dad is Scott Campbell.
Ashley Landon, who has been stationed in Pierre with the South Dakota Highway Patrol for two years, is the newest deputy with the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office headquartered at Canton. Before joining the SDHP, she was in the U.S. Navy for four years. Lincoln County includes not only the rural areas around Canton but also Harrisburg and the southern part of Sioux Falls.
Services for Elaine Wagner, 79, were held Tuesday at Faith Lutheran Church. She died Feb. 12 after a 2 1/2-year battle with cancer. The former Elaine Merrill graduated from high school at Agar in 1959. She and Lyle Wagner were married in 1960. Elaine worked for the Department of Transportation in Pierre for 33 years. She was an active member of Faith Lutheran Church. She is survived by two sons, Ron Wagner and his wife Lynda and Pastor Don Wagner and his wife Jolene; two daughters, Ronda Steffen and her husband Dave and Darcie Kurtenbach and her husband Tom; 12 grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; brothers Raymond Merrill and Larry Merrill, and sister Norma Jean Gourlie.
The first three performances of Pierre Players’ winter show, “Bill W. and Dr. Bob,” will be at 7:30 Friday and Saturday and 2:00 Sunday at Grand Opera House.
Stanley County High senior J.D. Carter was crowned 2019 King of Hearts at the annual Job’s Daughters formal Sunday night. The other King of Hearts candidates were Stanley County seniors Austin Hand, Brady Hoftiezer and Riley Hannum and Riggs seniors Layne Uecker, Frank Becker and Caleb Huizenga.
The funeral service for Duane “Buck” Mercer, 74, of Blunt will be held at 2 p.m. today (Thursday) at the Blunt United Methodist Church. He died Feb. 15 at Avera Maryhouse. He grew up on a farm near Blunt and graduated from high school there. After attending Black Hills State and joining the Army, he returned home to take over the family farm with his brother, Virgil. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Pat Mercer; two sons, Todd Mercer and his wife Vonda and Travis Mercer and his wife Jackie; two daughters, Tracy O’Daniel and her husband Allan and Megan Mercer; six grandchildren; his brother, Virgil, and sisters Marlene and Norma.
The final performance of the Georgia Morse Middle School musical, “High School Musical—Jr.,” will begin at 7 p.m. tonight (Thursday) at the Riggs theater. Activity passes will be honored. Otherwise the admission prices are $5 for adults and $3 for students.
Among the officials who will be working the two state wrestling tournaments in Rapid City this weekend are Toby Bryant of Sioux Falls, Kris Dozark of Pierre and Steve Rounds of Pierre.
Services for Randy Pederson, 57, who died Feb. 14 at Avera St. Mary’s Hospital, were held Wednesday at the Isburg Funeral Chapel. He grew up in Fort Pierre and graduated there. Then he moved to San Antonio, Texas, and began to work in construction. Following a hurricane in the U.S. Virgin Islands, he joined a construction company going there to build a school. After it was completed, he remained at St. Croix and began his own construction company. In 1997 he was injured in a machete attack on his life. He returned to Fort Pierre and underwent numerous surgeries and extensive rehabilitation. He eventually began a painting and drywall business, which he operated until a cancer diagnosis. He is survived by his sister, Donna Hughes; his brother Roger Pederson and his wife Lorrie; five nephews and nieces and their children and grandchildren, and his stepmother, Erlyn Beck.
Saturday night, March 9, is the date set for this year’s Pierre-Fort Pierre Kiwanis Club concert, the proceeds from which benefit the many local activities—most of them for young people—that the Kiwanians help to fund. Performing this year will be East of Westreville. The concert begins at 6:30 p.m. Watch for ticket information.
Long-time Pierre teacher Bob Parliman passed away at the age of 62 Sunday morning after battling pancreatic cancer. Mass is being celebrated at Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Sioux Falls at 10:45 a.m. this (Thursday) morning. A celebration of life Mass is planned for Saturday, March 30, at 10 a.m. at Ss. Peter & Paul Catholic Church in Pierre. Bob grew up in Sioux Falls, graduating from Washington High School in 1974. He earned his bachelor’s degree in 1978 and his master’s in 1995, both from USD. He taught at St. Francis before coming to Pierre in 1995. He taught at Georgia Morse Middle School for many years and directed musicals there. He was also active in the Pierre Players community theater organization. He is survived by his mother, Elaine Parliman of Sioux Falls; one brother, Tom Parliman and his wife Barb of Sioux Falls; his sister, Sally Graf and her husband Tom of Des Moines; and another sister, Nancy Schoenewe and her husband Lee of Spencer, Iowa.
Students of the Month for January in the Stanley County middle school and high school were: sixth grade, Blaize Frost; seventh grade, Cadence Hand; eighth grade, Olivia Chase; ninth grade, Elleana Holley; tenth grade, Panaya Jeeramongkolkun; eleventh grade, Wyatt Deal; twelfth grade, Riley Hannum.
Nate Sprenkel, son of Pierre natives Eric and Amanda (Weaver) Sprenkel, will be wrestling at the state “A” tournament in Rapid City this weekend. Nate is a sophomore at Sioux Falls O’Gorman. He placed fourth at his regional tournament last week to earn a spot at state. His record is 25-24 this season so far.
At the regional instrumental solo and small-group music contest in Chamberlain yesterday, Riggs High entries earned 16 superior ratings and 12 excellent ratings. It was a trying day because the contest’s start was set back two hours due to the winter weather that caused the Chamberlain schools to delay their start until 10:00.
50 years later, remembering District 15
Good things—no, call ’em great things—were happening in Class “B” boys basketball around here 50 years ago. It was district tournament time of the 1968-69 school year.
To begin with, let me tell you I do not like one bit the current way the basketball tournaments are set up. District tournaments are long gone, and we have this strange “modern-day” way of determining who goes to the state tournament. Its name changes every year. This year we’re calling it “SoDak 16.” Two teams get together on a neutral court in some out-of-the-way place in front of a half-filled gym with no home crowd. That winner goes to the state tournament.
The logic behind all of this, the powers-that-be claim, is so that the best teams get to the state tournament. We all want that, right? I don’t. I want teams from all across the state in the state tournament. Big schools whose teams are always good want the current method. Coaches want it; nothing pads a resume like a state tournament appearance. Fans in areas where there are many good teams want it so their boys don’t get upset before getting to the state tournament.
I hate it. And these seeding points? I don’t like them either.
I wonder how many times back in the ’40s, ’50s and ’60s both Agar and Onida would have gone to the state tournament without having to deal with each other in district tournament play every year. First, we had to be the best team in our own area before thinking about state tournaments.
The SDHSAA cares not about my opinion, but if you’re going to call it a “state” tournament, then there should be teams from all over the state—the best team in each region qualifies. Class “AA” is the worst culprit because the six Metro schools—Washington, Lincoln, Roosevelt, O’Gorman, Harrisburg, Brandon Valley—can easily get to the state tournament in that class without even being the best team in their own city! Just wait till Sioux Falls Jefferson comes on line. Maybe they’ll get all seven in! And Tea Area will eventually be so big it will be Class “AA.” Then, whee! Sioux Falls can have all eight teams in the state tournament. (Hopefully they will all have to drive to Rapid City to play.)
But even in Classes “A” and “B” it is entirely possible that all eight teams in a state tournament could come from east of the James River. That would not be a “state” tournament! But that’s what they call it.
But I digress.
Back in the good old days the SDHSAA had just realigned schools following the 1968 season. No longer would Onida and Agar go north for their district nor would Stanley County go south nor would Blunt, Harrold and Highmore go east. Suddenly starting that February these six “B” schools close by around Pierre would be in the same district! Voila!
That district champion would be paired with the champions of District 13 and 14 to the east and District 16 to the south in Region 4. Four district champions vying to be regional winner and advance to state! What a concept! The best team in each region going on to state! So very old-school!
And seed points had nothing to do with anything. The tournament pairings were drawn out of a hat! Imagine that! No computers. No seedings. Call it “luck of the draw.” And it worked just fine for many years.
Parkview Gym in Fort Pierre was the logical place—and the largest gym—in the district, so that was the site of the first District 15 tourney under the new alignment, and that February 1969 excitement started something that lasted until the state went with the three-class system starting with the 1985-86 school year.
How much do you remember about that first District 15 tournament 50 years ago this month?
On that Monday night Agar and Blunt had drawn byes. The first game set the tempo for 17 years of exciting competition when Harrold and Highmore staged a real donnybrook. A free throw in overtime gave the Cardinals a 56-55 win. Dennis Marso was coach at Harrold then with Gary Heintz his assistant. The roster was full of names one immediately associates with Harrold basketball—Buchanan, Barnes, Meyer, Parks, Bauer, Keller. The Highmore coach was Terry Jordre. Remember Ward Cline, Wayne McKelvey, Greg Davis? They were Pirate seniors that year.
Tim Cass and Mike Doyle were the Stanley County coaches 50 years ago. They added a lot of class to the coaching business, but they were lousy when it came to drawing names out of the hat. They drew for their first-round opponent unbeaten, top-ranked Onida and lost 99-71 that first night.
Remember those Buffalo names? Tom McGough, Randy Stroup, Larry McQuistion, Jim Dyer—those were the seniors. And at the bottom of the roster was a 5’8″ freshman named Mike Hackett from whom much would be heard later.
Tuesday night brought Agar into action. Dan Sutera was head coach then with Marion Schreiber his assistant. Jerry Weischedel, Lynn Robbennolt, Jerry Cottrill and Darry Wagner were some of the guys in green and gold that season, and they had too much height for Harrold in the first game of the semis, 69-46.
The other “bye” team was the Blunt Monarchs, and Dick Vosberg and Ron Baseley had a squad with a fine record heading into the tournament. But of course nobody was a match for Onida that year, and Monarchs like Jon Kirsch, Mike Ogan, Randy and Gale Harkless (those were the seniors) and juniors Russ Spaid, Ted Massey, Ed Welch, Les Sevening and Harry Kimbley fell behind 14-0 and could never catch up. It ended up 83-51 as Jerry Kassin was merciful in the second half.
Blunt did rebound Wednesday for a 44-37 win over Harrold for third place with a fourth-quarter rally.
That year there was no stopping Kassin’s Onida Warriors. Agar gave them as good a game as anybody that championship night. It was 23-16 after a quarter and 50-37 at halftime, but it ended up 91-60.
Remember those Warrior names? Joining Kassin on the bench were Ron Jacobsen and Larry Martin, and as for players they had a fair bunch from whom to pick. The seniors were Danny Lamb, Dave Thomas, Monte Evans and Tom West. The rest of the Warriors weren’t so bad either when one considers Tom Fox, Steve Hyde and Ross Hyde. Add in Mike Lomheim, John Day, Jerry Seaman, Terry Hofer and Frank Pautz.
They had a worry in the regional, escaping Draper 61-58 despite a hostile Huron Arena crowd, then took care of Hitchcock 79-56 in the finals. At Sioux Falls in the state “B” they beat Lennox by five, completely dismantled undefeated Tyndall in the semifinals 87-44 and then outlasted Larry Luitjens’ De Smet team, naturally the crowd favorite, 93-90, in one of the greatest “B” finals ever.
And it was 50 years ago!
District 15 had begun, and it continued. There was a stretch from 1974 through 1978 when the District 15 champ was also the regional champ four out of five years. Sully Buttes under Dan Sutera went to state in 1974, Gettysburg in 1975 (the Battlers had come into the district when Blunt and Onida combined to form Sully Buttes), Agar in 1976 and Stanley County under Ron Lawrence in 1978. The Hi-Pointers went to state again in 1981 with Lynn Frederick at the helm.
Those were great times. Boys basketball district tournament week was the most magical week of the school year. There were great intense rivalries; phenomenal athletes; memorable games.
Nowadays there is no district tournament in one gym where all the fans can see all the games. The seeding business puts the higher-ranked teams always at home, and games are played simultaneously at different sites. There is no magic involved.
But regardless of the system, good luck to our local teams as they enter tournament play. All these young kids (and young parents who weren’t even born back in our good old days) don’t know what it was like back in the day, but that’s not their fault. Chargers, Buffs, Govs—go get ’em! Show those high-seeded teams what we think of the seeding process!
A CLOSING THOUGHT
Again. And again.
Not as the morning bird
Whose song springs
To sudden glorious life
At the dawning of light,
But as the sun
Who touches the horizon
With tender fingertips
Before reaching open arms
Across the sky
To embrace another day
To weather the storms
To stand tall and breathe fire
And then to descend into rest
Until it’s time to rise again.
— L. R. Knost