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Shiloh Christian relies on three-point shooting to beat Richland in Class B boys basketball semifinals

Richland's Cole Myers drives against Bismarck Shiloh Christian during Friday night's North Dakota Class B boys state basketball tournament semifinal game at the Minot State Dome. Mike McCleary / Bismarck Tribune1 / 2
Richland's Cole Myers drives through the Bismarck Shiloh Christian defense during Friday night's North Dakota Class B boys state basketball tournament semifinal game at the Minot State Dome. Mike McCleary / Bismarck Tribune2 / 2

MINOT, N.D. -- Threes are better than twos, providing you make your threes.

The Bismarck Shiloh Christian Skyhawks took a lot of threes and made a lot of threes Friday, March 15, in a 64-51 win over Richland in the semifinals of the Class B boys state basketball tournament semifinals at the Minot State Dome.

Cole Walth and Canaan Fagerland had six 3-pointers apiece for the Skyhawks (23-3), who will in the school’s first championship game Saturday night. As a team, Shiloh made 14 of 33 3-point attempts.

“Richland is a zone team and we figured they were going to pack it in with their three big guys to try to stop Macauley (Young),” Shiloh coach Brad Miller said. “We said if they moved the ball they would get some open looks. I thought if we got open looks, we’d knock them down and by golly the kids did.”

They certainly got both.

Walth made 6 of 8 from long range. Fagerland was 6-for-13 and Trey Brunelle connected twice.

The Skyhawks shot just 39 percent overall, but they were 42 percent on 3-pointers.

“I’ve said all year, teams shoot their best against us,” Richland coach Cody Reiland said. “I don’t know what it is.”

The Colts (22-3) kept Young in check until late in the game. The 6-foot-9 post finished with 13 points and 25 of the Skyhawks’ 47 rebounds. Reiland said the Colts had to pick their poison.

“If we moved out, it was tough helping out down low,” he said.

Walth hit three of the Skyhawks’ seven 3-pointers in the first half. As a team, they hit seven of 17 attempts while going 2-for-11 from inside the arc.

The first half was back and forth with five lead changes and three ties. Cole Myers’ 3-pointer with 51 seconds left gave Richland a 16-14 lead after one quarter. Myers ended with a team-high 18 points.

With 4:28 left in the half, Walth hit a 3-pointer to stake Shiloh to a 22-19 lead and the Skyhawks nursed the lead into halftime. The Colts went through an 0-for-8 drought in the second quarter, which ended with Shiloh up 27-23.

Fagerland had three 3-pointers in the third quarter, the last with 45 seconds left to make it a 43-37 game. Richland got as close as five points in the fourth quarter, but Shiloh made 3-pointers on three of its next four possessions to go up 55-41.

Carter Lingen had 14 points and Gavin Reiland 11 for Richland, which plays the loser on the second semifinal for third place.

Shiloh Christian held the Colts to 36 percent from the field. That included a couple of long scoreless drought.

“We’ve been playing really good defense and I thought we did a nice job,” Miller said. “I know we are capable of playing good defense. I figured we could show them better defense than they’ve seen all year.”

Richland 16 23 37 51

Shiloh Christian 14 27 43 64

Richland: Lentz 4, Lingen 14, Myers 18, Reiland 11, Anderson 4.

Shiloh: Mitzel 7, Young 13, Fagerland 18, Brunelle 8, Walth 18.

CONSOLATION SEMIFINALS

Beulah 71, Powers Lake 44

PL 9 22 32 44

B 17 36 49 71

PL: I. Nordloef 5, Fredrickson 2, Schroeder 4, A. Nordloef 6, VanBerkom 14, Enget 4, Rystedt 9.

B: Morsette Jr. 21, Larson 11, Gierke 13, Brandt 13, Yeager 2, Barbot 2, Olson 3, McGraw 2, Hager 2, Rueb 2.

New Rockford-Sheyenne 59, Ellendale 55

NRS 14 21 38 59

E 7 23 32 55

NRS: Belquist 13, Allmaras 17, Thompson 8, Longnecker 5, Granger 12, Holzwarth 2, Ystaas 2.

E: Thorpe 9, Merkel 8, Molan 16, Wagner 11, Henningsen 3, Durheim 8.