Feeling the heat
District 14 boys basketball has been through a dynamic season and it's just heating up as the district tournament approaches. "There's so much parity," Killdeer coach Rich Dufault said. "There's so much evenness in this district. It's really anyb...
District 14 boys basketball has been through a dynamic season and it's just heating up as the district tournament approaches.
"There's so much parity," Killdeer coach Rich Dufault said. "There's so much evenness in this district. It's really anybody's ball game."
Throughout the season, five of the six teams in the district have received votes as one of the top-10 teams in the state.
In the latest poll released Tuesday, Killdeer was ranked fourth in the state, Hazen in sixth and Beulah ninth. However, the District 14 seeding hardly follows that lineup.
"I don't know if there's a good draw or not," Beulah coach Dough Olson said. "I think there is such a strong balance throughout the district."
Hazen ended up with District 14's top seed with an overall record of 16-3. The Titans have been ranked in the polls earlier this season and sit in the second seed. Beulah and Killdeer come seeded third and fourth respectively.
Fifth-seeded Richardton-Taylor also received votes in the polls.
"Nobody's talking about Glen-Ullin," Titans coach Gregg Grinsteinner said. "But they're playing very good basketball. They're very capable of going in and knocking somebody off."
So with so many top-notch teams, it leaves one to wonder what will be the key that will get a team out on top in District 14.
"I think what this tournament is going to come down to is how the role players in the benches come into play.," Grinsteinner said. "Every team has people they look to and rely on. They all have good athletes, good defense and are fundamentally sound."
Dickinson Trinity took the state championship last year. Returning from the 2006 state champion starting lineup are seniors Jordan Rising and Mark Keithley.
"It's a pretty balanced district with pretty good athletes," Dufault said. "You're going to have to be ready to compete as soon as the ball is tipped up in the air."