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Beulah rallies to edge Richardton-Taylor

Press Photo by Dustin Monke Richardton-Taylor sophomore MiKayla Aluise, middle, goes to the hoop between Beulah's Jamie Murschel, left, Kelsie Schmidt, front, and Nessa Iverson, right, on Friday during the first round of the District 14 girls basketball tournament at Knights of Columbus Activities Center.

Beulah had plenty of chances to fall apart Friday night in the opening round of the District 14 girls basketball tournament.

Richardton-Taylor had big runs to start both the third and fourth quarters, but the fifth-seeded Miners never panicked.

Beulah used timely shots and multiple free-throw opportunities to rally from an eight-point deficit it faced with 5 minutes remaining en route to a 58-54 victory over the fourth-seeded Raiders at Knights of Columbus Activities Center.

Still feeling the effects of a long Thursday night watching its boys team lose the Region 7 championship game, the Miners had their ups and downs before pulling ahead in the final minutes.

"Things could have been better," Beulah junior Lakin Kessler said. "We came out the second half exhausted. We were pretty aggressive and pushed through it. It was just good to win."

Kessler led the charge for the Miners down the stretch, scoring nine of her game-high 20 points in the fourth quarter including a go-ahead 3-pointer with 2:41 remaining and a tying jumper with 1:47 left.

"She came up big today," Beulah head coach Rick Miller said. "We'd been preaching to her and all the girls to be aggressive and attack. She attacked from the get-go today."

Beulah took the lead for good when sophomore Delaney Johansen buried a 3-pointer from the left wing with 50 seconds remaining to put the Miners up 56-53. Johansen finished with 11 points and seven rebounds.

The Miners, who face top-seeded Dickinson Trinity at 6 p.m. today in the semifinals, also got it done from the free-throw line after drawing fouls and creating extra opportunities. They shot 21 of 35 from the line.

"We had them in every statistical category, I think, except for free throws," Raiders head coach April Berger said. "It just comes down to free throws winning games. We had two of our starters foul out and obviously we don't have much of a bench, so it came down to some of their girls stepping up and they just hit some free throws."

Richardton-Taylor will face the loser of the semifinal game between No. 2 seed Killdeer and No. 3 seed Hazen at 4:30 p.m. Monday in a region-qualifier game.

Though Kessler and sophomore Nessa Iverson combined to go just 2 of 8 from the free-throw line in the final minute, Richardton-Taylor never found a good look at the basket.

Kessler gave the Miners a two-possession lead with 13.7 seconds remaining after hitting one free throw.

Richardton-Taylor led 30-28 at halftime and scored the first seven points of the third quarter to stretch its lead.

Beulah fired back with a 12-0 run of its own and took a 40-39 lead going into the fourth quarter.

Richardton-Taylor built a 48-40 lead 3 minutes into the fourth quarter before Beulah began its comeback.

Kessler, who scored 13 points, converted a three-point play with 4:47 left to spark an 11-2 Beulah run she wrapped up with a 3-pointer from the left wing 2 minutes later.

"It was a game of runs," Miller said. "We'd pull ahead and they'd catch up on us."

Sophomore Mikayla Aluise led the Raiders with 17 points, six rebounds and five assists. Senior Halle Olson had 10 points and 10 rebounds while her twin sister Logan Olson added 12 points and four rebounds. Junior Hannah Rummel had nine points, seven rebounds and five assists.

"MiKayla, I'd call her a warrior," Berger said. "She was a warrior for our team. She takes it to the basket, she does all we ask of her and she puts free throws in. She's really come around the last half of the season."

Beulah 16 28 40 58

RT 14 30 39 54

B: Lakin Kessler 20, Nessa Iverson 13, Delaney Johansen 11, Jamie Murschel 8, Kelsie Schmidt 3, Shawnee Unruh 3.

RT: Mikayla Aluise 17, Logan Olson 12, Halle Olson 10, Hannah Rummel 9, Sam Steiner 4, Cassidy Diede 2.

3-pointers: B 5 (Kessler 2, Iverson 1, Johansen 1, Unruh 1), RT 4 (Aluise 1, H. Olson 1, L. Olson 1, Rummel 1). Free throws: B 21-35, RT 12-20. Total fouls: B 15, RT 25. Fouled out: Steiner, Rummel. Rebounds: B 40 (Murschel 10), RT 47 (H. Olson 10). Assists: B 7 (Schmidt 4), RT 10 (Rummel 5, Aluise 5), Steals: B 6 (three with 2), RT 8 (L. Olson 3). Blocks: none. Turnovers: B 20, RT 16. Records: RT 8-12.

Hazen 34, Hebron-Glen Ullin 21

Hazen used a balanced scoring effort and forced 32 turnovers en route to a win over Hebron-Glen Ullin in an opening-round game.

Rachael Hansana led the Bison with eight points and four rebounds while Mariya Schneider added seven points. Dakota Wood had five points, five steals and three rebounds. Sadie Bolton had five points and five boards.

Hazen scored the first 10 points of the game and held an 18-4 halftime lead. The Bison shot 15 of 60 from the field and were just 1 of 21 from 3-point territory.

Hebron-Glen Ullin's first field goal didn't come until the 5:01 mark of the third quarter when MaKenzie Glass hit a jumper from the left baseline.

That sparked a 10-0 run that featured six points from Kari Gerving and cut Hazen's lead to 24-14 by the end of the quarter.

Gerving led the Bearcats with nine points. Michaela Gerving added eight points and six rebounds.

Hebron-Glen Ullin faces the loser of the semifinal game between Trinity and Beulah at 6 p.m.

The Bearcats were 0 of 10 from the field in the first half and 4 of 12 from the free-throw line in the first half. They finished 7 of 28 from the field and 7 of 16 from the line.

HGU 2 4 14 21

Hazen 10 18 24 34

HGU: Kari Gerving 9, Michaela Gerving 8, MaKenzie Glass 2, Teasha Voegele 2.

H: Rachael Hansana 8, Mariya Schneider 7, Dakota Wood 5, Sadie Bolton 5, Lexie Biffert 3, Madison Leintz 2, Kayla Lindquist 2, Kendra Slaubaugh 2.

3-pointers: HGU 0, H 1 (Schneider). Free throws: HGU 7-16, H 3-10. Total fouls: HGU 10, H 15. Rebounds: HGU 38 (Gerving 6), H 38 (Biffert 7). Assists: HGU 4 (Voegele 3), H 10 (three with 2). Steals: HGU 6 (three with 2), H 19 (Biffert 5, Wood 5). Blocks: HGU 4 (four with 1), H 2 (two with 1). Turnovers: HGU 32, H 14.

Dustin Monke

Monke came to The Dickinson Press in July 2006 as the newspaper's sports editor and was hired as its managing editor in March 2013. During his tenure at The Press, Monke has won multiple awards for sports reporting, feature reporting, column writing, page design and photography. He was a key part of The Press winning the North Dakota Newspaper Association's General Excellence and Sweepstakes awards in 2009 and 2012, and oversaw The Press' Sweepstakes and General Excellence wins in 2014, as well as its national first-place honors for Community Leadership in the Inland Daily Press Association and contributed to the first-place Inland award for Investigative Reporting. As the newspaper's editor, he writes an occasional Sunday column, is a member of The Press' Editorial Board, contributes feature stories and breaking news, designs pages, and oversees the day-to-day operations of the newsroom and editorial staff. In his free time, he enjoys watching sports and action movies, exercises whenever his schedule allows, and spends every minute he can with his wife and son.

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