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Gangl getting comfortable in senior season

Dickinson senior forward Sydney Gangl was thrown into her first high school varsity game as a freshman.

As a sophomore and junior, Gangl evolved and became a key perimeter shooter for the Midgets.

“Playing varsity for the first time was really nerve-wracking, because I was playing with a lot of older kids,” she said. “But it has been fun.”

However, Gangl’s role has changed a little this season. At 5-foot-11, she’s the tallest player on Dickinson’s roster. In turn, Gangl has been asked to play more inside than on the perimeter.

“Bringing Sydney in as a freshman, she was a shooter and she’s always been a shooter,” Dickinson head coach Dan Pender said. “The best thing I’ve seen out of her this year is that she’s willing to go inside and mix it up a little bit. She’s trying to get better and she’s always working on her game.”

With the change, Gangl’s points per game dipped to 5.5, but she’s averaging 22.2 minutes a night, the most on the team. She averaged 7.7 points as a junior, while playing mostly a guard position.

The Midgets are 4-15 and host the West Region play-in game against Williston at 6 p.m. today. Gangl said her senior season didn’t result in as many wins as she had hoped, but she can see the team continuously maturing.

“It hasn’t gone expect how I expected, but we have done a lot of good things,” she said. “I just hope mainly that we end well.”

Dickinson’s previous two games against Williston both resulted in wins. The Midgets edged the Coyotes 58-55 on the road on Feb. 6 and Dickinson handled Williston at home 60-45 on Feb. 18.

Despite winning the two regular season games, Dickinson senior guard Riley Cooper said the Midgets can’t overlook anyone.

“The game (today) is the most important game of the entire season,” she said. “It’s going to come down to the people who want to work the hardest and wants it the most. We all know what this game means. We know what we have to do.”

The Midgets have a roster of six seniors who want to close out their careers at the DHS gymnasium with a win.

Gangl’s main goal right now is to reach the West Region Tournament, which begins on March 6 at the Bismarck Civic Center.

“We just want to make it to WDA first and then to state,” she said.