Demons too much for Minot High

Minot had the resolve to dig itself out of one double-digit crevice.

Repeating the feat against the fourth-ranked club in the state was too lofty a task.

The Majettes, who trailed the entire West Region contest on Thursday night at Magic City Campus, couldn’t get the push they needed in a 59-50 loss to Bismarck High.

Minot (6-7, 6-5) trailed by as many as 15 points in the first half before cutting Bismarck’s lead to three, but another late run by the Demons was too much to overcome.

“Every time we made a run, (Bismarck) would have someone come up with a basket,” Minot coach Todd Magnuson said. “They’re the No. 4 team in the state for a reason.”

The Demons (9-4, 8-2) were too much for the undersized Majettes inside, as Bismarck posts Keisha Englehardt (16 points) and Naomi Rust (13 points, nine rebounds) had their way on the block.

It was Bismarck gunner McKenzie Kiefer who put the Majettes in the biggest hole, though.

Kiefer scored all 16 of her points in the first half, connecting on 4 of 5 3-point attempts in part of a 15-3 run. Bismarck took a 38-24 lead into intermission.

“They put pressure on us that we really don’t like,” said Magnuson, whose team finished with 22 turnovers. “And they got a lot of offensive of rebounds. Those hurt us every time.”

Minot’s fortunes changed, though, if only for a spurt.

Freshman Cassie Askvig, who had a team-high 14 points, led Minot on a 15-4 run, connecting on a 3-pointer to make it a 42-39 contest. The Majettes wouldn’t get any closer.

The Demons stetched the lead to 11 and baskets by Jayden Moum and Sophie Bengson made it a six-point game, but Bismarck hit its free throws down the stretch.

Minot’s four-game win streak came to a screeching halt.

“We battled back,” Magnuson said. “We didn’t keel over and die, so I’m proud of our girls for that.”

Loni Bryantt had seven assists for Minot, which entertains Dickinson on Saturday at 6 p.m.