Beach makes incredible 2nd-half rally to beat Hazen for 3rd straight Region 7 championship

A true test was the type of game the Beach girls basketball team needed before heading to the Class B state tournament. Hazen gave the Buccaneers that Thursday night in the Region 7 tournament championship. Beach fought back from an 11-point defi...

Kelcee Dykins
Press Photo by Dustin Monke Beach senior Kelcee Dykins, left, scores underneath the basket in the fourth quarter over Hazen sophomore Mariya Schneider as Hazen senior Morgan Karges, right, looks on during the Region 7 girls basketball tournament championship game Thursday at Knights of Columbus Activities Center.

A true test was the type of game the Beach girls basketball team needed before heading to the Class B state tournament.

Hazen gave the Buccaneers that Thursday night in the Region 7 tournament championship.

Beach fought back from an 11-point deficit in the third quarter to defeat Hazen 69-60 for its third consecutive region title at Knights of Columbus Activities Center.

"Before the game, (Hazen head coach) John (Ward) said, 'We've got to give it our best,'" Beach head coach Bob Waldal said. "When shook heads, he said, 'Bob, we gave it our best.' It was a good game for us. We absolutely needed that type of game."

Beach and Hazen countered back-and-forth for a majority of the game until the third quarter. The Bison (13-12) took their largest lead, 43-32, with 4 minutes, 6 seconds left in the third.


"We played three solid quarters and we had them on the ropes," Ward said. "We just didn't finish."

The No. 9-ranked Buccaneers (22-2) needed to answer, and quickly, to stay in the game for the long haul.

Beach found its answer in its lone senior, Kelcee Dykins. The 5-foot-7 forward posted a game-high 27 points and 10 rebounds.

"We knew that we had to grit our teeth and not go down," said Dykins, who was named Region 7 senior athlete of the year following the game. "We had to give it everything we had."

Beach cut the deficit within one-point, 45-44, with 35.6 seconds left after Dykins drained two free throws.

That didn't deter Hazen though.

They scored the next five points, including Morgan Karges' swished half-court 3-pointer as time expired to end the third. Karges finished with 14 points and five assists.

Ashton Carter added three 3-pointers and scored 11 for the Bison, who shot 25 of 54 (44 percent) from the field.


"It was phenomenal to see everything that my team shot up going in," said Hazen senior Paige Burling, who had a team-high 19 points. "It was the greatest feeling in the world. Jumping up in the air, doing a little fist pump and everyone was getting excited."

Beach slowly chipped away at the Hazen's lead in the fourth and did a majority of the damage from the free-throw line.

Buccaneers sophomore guard Hailee Farstveet went 11 of 17 from the line and had with 21 points to go along with nine rebounds, five assists and three steals.

"We just played better defense and were aware of where their shooters were, then we just got after it on offense," Farstveet said.

Dykins put in a contested layup and drained the free throw with 3:19 left in the game after Karges picked up her fifth foul.

Dykins' free throw gave the Buccaneers took a 58-57 advantage and they never gave up the lead.

In turn, Beach's defense clamped down and didn't allow Hazen to score for more than 3 minutes. The Buccaneers outscored the Bison 25-10 in the fourth quarter.

"This team is spurty," Bob Waldal said. "They'll have some good runs and it comes from the defensive end."


Beach was 0 of 10 from 3-point range.

The Bison led 30-28 at halftime and Burling said they were ready to go right back on the court.

"We went into the locker room and we were screaming and our coach kind of settled us down," Burling said. "The feeling at halftime was amazing."

Beach's only other lead to end a quarter was the first, 14-12.

The Buccaneers, who have won 77 of their 80 games the past three seasons, now face Region 1 champion Kindred in the Class B state tournament at approximately 7:15 p.m. next Thursday.

"A lot of it is, you find out who their leading scorers are and what kind of defense they play," Waldal said. "You also have to take care of ourselves."

Hazen 12 30 50 60

Beach 14 28 44 69


H: Paige Burling 19, Morgan Karges 14, Ashton Carter 11, Sadie Bolton 6, Racheal Biffert 6, Courtney Ost 2, Mariya Schneider 2.

B: Kelcee Dykins 27, Hailee Farstveet 21, Cyndi Stedman 8, Bailey Waldal 6, Channa Clarin 4, Brooklyn Zimmerman 3.

3-pointers: H 5 (Carter 3, Karges 2), B 0. Free throws: H 7-8, B 21-33. Total fouls: H 21, B 10. Fouled out: H, Bolton, Karges, Schneider. Rebounds: H 26 (Burling 5, Ost 5), B 39 (Dykins 10). Assists: H 16 (Karges 5), B 11 (Farstveet 5). Steals: H 3 (Karges 2), B 6 (Farstveet 3). Blocks: H 2 (Burling 2), B 2. Turnovers: H 14, B 6. Records: H 13-12, B 22-2.

Third place

Bowman County 50, Killdeer 43

Bowman County rebounded from a tough loss to Hazen in Tuesday night's semifinals by capturing the third-place trophy.

The Bulldogs used a strong performance from senior Kayla Palczewski to defeat Killdeer.

Palczewski scored 16 points and Kit Miller added 12 points and 11 rebounds.


Senior Megan Klein had 14 points, 14 rebounds, five assists and four blocks to keep the Cowboys in contention the entire game. Morgan LeMieux added 14 points for Killdeer (11-14).

Bowman County (15-9) maintained its two-point 21-19 lead at halftime to the third quarter 35-33. Killdeer was up 9-8 after the first quarter.

BC 8 21 35 50

Killdeer 9 19 33 43

BC: Kayla Palczewski 16, Kit Miller 12, Haley Sabe 8, Kaylee Heinrich 5, Yajaira Rameriz 5, Erika Olson 2, Macy Smyle 2.

K: Megan Klein 14, Morgan LeMieux 14, Heidi Ottmar 8, Alison Scheetz 5, Ashley Brew 2.

3-pointers: BC 2 (Palczewski 1, Sabe 1), K 2 (Ottmar 1, Scheetz 1). Free throws: BC 12-24, K 3-7. Total fouls: BC 14, K 24. Fouled out: K, Tess Gaugler. Rebounds: BC 31 (Miller 11), K 30 (Klein 14). Assists: BC 13 (two with three), K 14 (Klein 5). Steals: BC 10 (Rameriz 4), K 7 (three with two). Blocks: BC 2, K 6 (Klein 4). Turnovers: BC 18, K 17. Records: BC 15-9, K 11-14.

Region 7 awards


All-Region 7 team: Bailey Waldal, Beach; Hailee Farstveet, Beach; Haley Sabe, Bowman County; Karen Schaaf, Hebron-Glen Ullin; Kelcee Dykins, Beach; Kit Miller, Bowman County; Mary Hlebechuk, Heart River; Megan Klein, Killdeer; Meghan Battest, Beulah; Nikki Grinsteinner, Dickinson Trinity; Paige Burling, Hazen; Taylor Kelner, Hettinger-Scranton.

Senior Athlete of the Year: Kelcee Dykins, Beach.

Coach of the Year: Pam Fisher, Bowman County.

Athletic Director of the Year: Mitch Lunde, Beulah.

Channa Clarin and Racheal Biffert
Press Photo by Dustin Monke Beach freshman Channa Clarin, right, and Hazen senior Racheal Biffert, middle, battle for the ball as Beach eighth-grader Brooklyn Zachmann, back, and sophomore Bailey Waldal, left, converge on the play Thursday during the Region 7 girls basketball tournament championship game at Knights of Columbus Activities Center.

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