Knights advance to title game

Our Redeemer’s Christian School girls basketball coach Kory Nelson was worried that the Knights would could out sluggish in their district opener Friday.

Nelson was also uncomfortable with the notion of playing semifinal opponent Des Lacs-Burlington because of the theory that’s it difficult to beat a team three times in one season.

The coach of the second-seeded Knights had nothing to fret about either night as ORCS advanced to the District 12 championship game against cross-town rival Bishop Ryan with a 55-30 victory over DL-B on Saturday at the Minot Municipal Auditorium. ORCS also advanced to the Region 6 tournament with the victory.

“The girls are focused,” Nelson said. “We talked before the game about beating them twice this year. We don’t have to do anything different. Just play our game and see what they come at us with.”

The Knights (16-5) took control early with their transition offense leading to layups. ORCS put up 24 first-quarter points and led 34-9 at halftime. Eighth-grade guard Morgan Olson scored 12 of her game-high 16 points in the first quarter before foul trouble kept her on the bench for long stretches.

“It was definitely exciting guaranteeing regionals, but we’re going to have to fight hard in the championship,” Olson said.

Senior forwards Ashley Koppinger and Emily VanLith also finished in double figures with 12 and 10 points, respectively.

The sixth-seeded Lakers (9-12) couldn’t overcome a second straight poor shooting night. After slipping past Glenburn in DL-B’s district opener by scoring 42 points, the Lakers came nowhere near hitting that mark against the Knights. DL-B scored just one point in the second quarter and totaled only 19 at the end of three.

“We wanted to get all over them,” Nelson said. “We didn’t want them to get any easy shots. We knew they struggled a bit against the zone so when we got into foul trouble, I had to throw something else at them and it really worked well for us.”

Courtney Mitchell Friday’s hero for the Lakers couldn’t get a shot from behind the 3-point arc to go down. She struggled from inside 3-point range as well, scoring four points in the first quarter before being shut out the rest of the night. Courtney Vogel didn’t make her first shot until the fourth quarter and finished with three points. Shauna Benzmiller and Taylor Murphy led the Lakers with six points.

Despite scoring 24 points in the opening quarter, the Knights had their share of shooting woes. ORCS scored a combined 14 points in the second and third quarters, but the Knights recovered in the fourth quarter to solidify their spot in the district title game.

“It feels good when you know your spot (in regionals) is secured so you can go into that championship game without any pressure and just play hard and have fun,” VanLith said.

The Lakers play a region qualifier against Kenmare at 4:30 p.m. on Monday. ORCS’ district championship rematch with the Lions is at 7:30 p.m.

Bishop Ryan 81, Mohall-Lansford-Sherwood 31

The Bishop Ryan girls basketball team continued its District 12 dominance, with Mohall-Lansford-Sherwood being the latest casualty in the semifinals as the Lions earned a berth to the region tournament.

The Lions (20-0) imposed their will on the glass and in the lane as the Mavericks were without starting center Alex Mott, who was lost for the remainder of the postseason with a dislocated knee suffered in Friday’s game against Kenmare. With the 5-foot-9 junior sidelined, Ryan sophomore forwards Hannah Stewart and Gabbie Bohl had a number of layups.

Stewart netted a game-high 32 points, 15 of which came in the third quarter. Bohl added 18, all coming after the first frame. Senior forward Quinn Harmon was the third Ryan player in double figures with 10.

Similar to their regular season matchup, the Lions led from start to finish and the game was never in question. Ryan led by 14 after one and held a 39-13 halftime advantage.

“Defense, defense, defense,” Ryan coach Julie Stewart said. “We preach defense daily in practice. Every game we get an opportunity to grow defensively. It makes us that much better.”

Emily Abernathey led the Mavericks (13-8) with nine points.

M-L-S plays Glenburn in a regional qualifier at 6 p.m. Monday. Ryan plays Our Redeemer’s in the district championship at 7:30 p.m.

Kenmare 38, Berthold 27

Lexie Munson scored nine of her game-high 16 points in the second quarter and the Kenmare girls basketball team advanced to a regional qualifier, eliminating Berthold in the process.

Munson scored all seven of the Honkers’ points in the first quarter before being shut out in the second frame. Both teams experienced limited offensive success in the first half as Kenmare and Berthold combined for 11 field goals in the opening 16 minutes. Kenmare led 15-14 at halftime.

The fifth-seeded Honkers (9-12) took a seven-point lead into the fourth quarter after outscoring the eighth-seeded Bombers 12-6 in the third.

“We fought and battled down the stretch and we executed down the stretch, which was nice to see,” Kenmare coach Brock Zietz said. “We gave them a lot of offensive rebounds. I would like to see us rebound better, but in the end we got the clutch stops when we needed them and got the clutch baskets down the stretch as well.”

Kenmare hit just two field goals in the fourth quarter, but went 7-of-13 from the free-throw line to widen its lead in the final minutes.

Madison Erickson led the Bombers (3-17) with 13 points.

The Honkers play a region qualifier against Des Lacs-Burlington at 4:30 p.m. Monday.

Glenburn 56, Surrey 47

After a disappointing opening-round loss to Des Lacs Burlington on Friday, Glenburn again got off to a slow start in its loser-out matchup with Surrey before eliminating the seventh-seeded Mustangs.

Tied at 11 at the end of the first quarter, Glenburn’s offense came alive in the second behind Payton Schumann’s 15 points in the frame. Schumann finished with a team-high 28 points, the only player on either team to score in double figures.

The Panthers led 32-25 at halftime and maintained a double-figure advantage throughout most of the second half. Defensively, Glenburn (10-9) allowed just seven field goals in the final 16 minutes.

“They realized if they were going to win this game, they have to play together as a team and come out and fight,” Glenburn coach Cassie Leraas said. “Surrey gave us a good run for our money and they’re a good team.”

Constant whistles by the referees dramatically slowed the game’s tempo. The teams combined for 46 fouls. Neither team fared well from the line as the Mustangs hit 13-of-25 attempts and the Panthers made 8-of-25.

Miranda Dyke, Skylar Bertsch and Chelsie Deibert all finished with nine points for the Mustangs (4-18).

Glenburn plays in a region qualifier against Mohall-Lansford-Sherwood at 6 p.m. Monday.