Bucs power past Cougars, into title gameBOWMAN — Beach junior guard Hailee Farstveet had been waiting to play in the District 13 girls basketball tournament since the team’s final game last Saturday against Hebron-Glen Ullin.
By: Royal McGregor, The Dickinson Press
BOWMAN — Beach junior guard Hailee Farstveet had been waiting to play in the District 13 girls basketball tournament since the team’s final game last Saturday against Hebron-Glen Ullin.
Farstveet was so eager to play, she nearly ran in front of two teammates before her name was called in the starting lineup.
“I was just ready for a game,” Farstveet said with a smile. “A week of practice just gets kind of old.”
Top-seeded Beach built up a double-digit lead in the first half and never let go en route to a 69-21 District 13 semifinal win over Heart River on Saturday at Solberg Gymnasium.
“In the last couple weeks, we’ve really had time to work on our defense,” Beach head coach Bob Waldal said. “I was really proud of the kids’ passes and the way they were able to distribute the ball.”
The Buccaneers held a 31-14 lead at halftime and continued to extend the lead in the second half.
“It’s tournament time,” Waldal said. “We talked about some things in the locker room and the kids fixed them.”
Beach shot 13 of 33 (39 percent) in the first, but increased its shooting percentage by three points. Though the Buccaneers only made seven trips to the free-throw line, the team was a perfect 7 of 7.
Beach’s three juniors — Farstveet, Bailey Waldal and Cyndi Stedman, who combined for 45.6 points per contest this season — supplied 50 of the team’s 69 points. Bailey Waldal posted 20 points, while Stedman added 14. Nine out of the 11 players from Beach scored at least two points.
“I think tonight was one of our best games of the season,” said Farstveet, who had 16 points, 11 rebounds and three assists. “It builds confidence for the entire team.”
Heart River, which has had struggles throughout the season, was 6 of 16 (38 percent) in the first half but was held to just seven points in the second half. The Cougars (6-14) were led by senior Mary Hlebechuk’s seven points.
Heart River head coach Kesley Boedeker said the biggest killer for the team was being outrebounded 46-17. The Buccaneers had more offensive rebounds (25) than the Cougars’ total rebounds.
“I thought we had a good game plan going in, but boxing out kind of killed us,” she said. “That’s something we’ve dealt with all year, but the girls never gave up.”
Beach clinched a Region 7 Tournament berth with the win and will look for its fifth straight District 13 championship when it plays sixth-seeded Bowman County at 7 p.m. Monday in the title game.
“We found out how well we can play,” Farstveet said. “Hopefully, we keep that up through the entire tournament and the rest of the postseason.”
Heart River plays Mott-Regent at 5:30 p.m. Monday in the regional-qualifier game. The Wildfire defeated the Cougars 44-40 on Jan. 17.
“I told them after the game, ‘Girls you can learn from this, you can learn from any game,’” Boedeker said. “We don’t want the girls to hang their heads, because the next game is the game that matters. We’ve got to turn our focus to Monday’s game and now our season turns into a one-game season.”
HR 4 14 18 21
Beach 15 31 55 69
HR: Mary Hlebechuk 7, Jada Mattson 5, Karli Northrop 3, Alex Poland, Jennifer Praus 2, Jasmine Northrop 2.
B: Bailey Waldal 20, Hailee Farstveet 16, Cyndi Stedman 14, Ashlynn Dietz 5, Morgan Nunberg 4, Kari Schmeling 3, Lateasha Lechler 3, Brooklyn Zachmann 2, Megan Benes 2.
3-pointers: HR 2 (Hlebechuk 1, Mattson 1), B 2 (Farstveet 1, Dietz 1). Free throws: HR 1-4, B 7-7. Total fouls: HR 10, B 14. Rebounds: HR 17 (five tied with two), B 46 (Farstveet 11). Assists: HR 6 (Poland 3), B 14 (Farstveet 3). Steals: HR 6 (Janessa Schmidt 3), B 18 (Waldal 8). Blocks: none. Turnovers: HR 27, B 12. Records: HR 6-14, B 14-5.