BEULAH -- Did anyone expect any less? Hazen junior Jacob Erhardt nailed a 3-pointer off one foot from the top of the key as time expired in overtime to lift the Bison to a stunning 51-50 victory over Dickinson Trinity in the championship game of ...
BEULAH -- Did anyone expect any less?
Hazen junior Jacob Erhardt nailed a 3-pointer off one foot from the top of the key as time expired in overtime to lift the Bison to a stunning 51-50 victory over Dickinson Trinity in the championship game of the District 14 boys basketball tournament Monday at the Beulah High School gymnasium.
"We ran a set play, but it didn't go as planned," Erhardt said. "We're district champions. It's a great feeling."
Hazen earned District 14's No. 1 seed in the Region 7 tournament. Trinity will have the No. 2 seed. They'll play either Hettinger or South Heart - who compete in the District 13 third-place game today - in the quarterfinals.
"We wanted (the ball) in his hands," Hazen coach Randy Johnson said. "We have a lot of options on the play. The guy he was supposed to pass the ball to wasn't open. He made the right play."
Erhardt's shot gave the Bison retribution after Trinity seniors Mark Keithley and Jordan Rising hooked up to put the Titans up by two with four seconds remaining in the game. Keithley drove the lane and dished it to Rising, who went to the hoop and made the uncontested layup.
"Both teams made great plays," Trinity coach Gregg Grinsteinner said. "They made one more."
Both teams exchanged leads in overtime, but neither ever had more than a two-point lead.
"That's the way championship games are supposed to be played," Grinsteinner said. "That was a fun game."
Trinity faced a five-point deficit with a minute and a half remaining in regulation.
However, the Titans turned to senior Mark Keithley to lead the way. Keithley hit a basket, and then nailed a 3-pointer with just more than a minute and half to go. It was the final score of regulation as the two teams were tied at 43.
Keithley finished with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
"We knew it was going to be a battle," Johnson said. "They've played well against our offense, but I feel good about our kids and what they've done."
Trinity scored the first basket of the game.
However, Hazen answered and led until 6:34 of the fourth when Rising, who had a game-high 21 points, hit a free throw after being fouled on a made layup.
Despite Hazen holding the advantage almost the entire game, Trinity was never farther than five points behind. Freshman Robbie Morey was also in double figures with 11 points.
"We had some breakdowns," Grinsteinner said. "Give them credit. They took us out of some things we like to do."
Hazen junior Jon Ellwein had 17 points and senior Kyle Boger added nine points, nine rebounds and 12 steals.
"These kids are gamers," Johnson said. "They made great plays."
Killdeer 59, Glen Ullin-Hebron 40
A one-point ball game turned into The Jacob Wheeling Show real fast.
Killdeer trailed the entire first half, including a deficit of five going into the locker room. However, the Cowboys fought back to take a 33-32 lead in the third quarter and from there, it was all Wheeling.
Wheeling hit three 3-pointers in the second half, two of which came during a 17-0 run that started in the third and finished in the fourth quarters. When the Cowboys were finished, the score was 50-32 and the game was in hand.
Wheeling had eight points during the run and finished with 26 for the game. Killdeer will get the fourth seed out of this district and will play the District 13 champion.
"He really showed what a senior should do," Killdeer coach Rich Dufault said. "He absolutely got in a groove. He was unconscious."
With Austin Dufault in constant foul trouble, Wheeling took the game on his shoulders and rode it out to the finish. He added four assists to his numbers, some of which came on shots from senior Zach Gaugler. Gaugler had six points during the long stretch and finished with eight in the game.
The Bearcats were led by sophomore Jarrod Auer's 13 points.
"We started getting offensive rebounds," Rich Dufault said. "That got us more possessions and we were able to score."
Beulah 52, Richardton-Taylor 40
Beulah had a 12-3 lead after the first quarter and forced Richardton-Taylor into catch-up mode the rest of the game. Beulah will be District 14's No. 3 seed in the region tourney.
"Our kids haven't been in this situation," Beulah coach Doug Olson said, referring to the Miners' move down to Class B this season. "It's a whole different thing to them."
The Raiders stayed competitive, keeping up with Beulah for the final three quarters and even cut the lead to seven points at one point.
However, Beulah never trailed and held the Raiders at bay with a 31-15 rebounding advantage.
"We've had a good start in all three of our games," Olson said. "That's what we wanted."
The scoring effort was, once again, balanced for Beulah. Senior Casey Becker set the pace with 19 points on 9 of 12 shooting from the floor. Senior Dustin Stromme was right behind him with 16 points and Tyler Zacher added 11 points and nine rebounds.
Sophomore guard Jadon Messer led the Raiders in scoring with 16 points. Garrett Zent had 10 steals.
The loss ends Richardton-Taylor's run. The Raiders fell victim to arguably the toughest district and region in the state.
In other regions in the state, the Raiders might have easily been a candidate for the state tournament.
"If anything, I think we just beat each other up," Olson said. "It's so balanced."