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Defense the name of the game in Midgets win over Williston

The Williston boys basketball team had a height advantage over Dickinson High, but the Midgets looked right past that, out rebounding and blocking the Coyotes on the way to a 65-54 win on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at the DHS gymnasium.

Dickinson High senior Connor Hoenke looks to dribble by a Williston defender on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at the DHS gym. (Shelby Reardon / The Dickinson Press)
Dickinson High senior Connor Hoenke looks to dribble by a Williston defender on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at the DHS gym. (Shelby Reardon / The Dickinson Press)

The Williston boys basketball team had a height advantage over Dickinson High, but the Midgets looked right past that, out rebounding and blocking the Coyotes on the way to a 65-54 win on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at the DHS gymnasium.

While steals were tied at eight a piece and the Midgets narrowly out rebounded the Coyotes 38-37, they still tightly guarded the visitors in the senior night showing.

"Our defense has been the best part of our game, the last five games, against some really good teams," Dickinson head coach Dan Glasser said. "We've really held our own on the defensive end."

Midget senior Krew Mathern had two massive blocks as well, one which rung off the backboard and got the crowd roaring. Senior Dawson Bechtold had another for the home team, while Williston didn't accrue any.

Mathern and senior Braden Selinger earned a team-high six rebounds, using their length and strength to get to the board.

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"Yeah they were bigger than us," Selinger said of the Coyotes, "But it was senior night and we kind of just wanted to go out there and work our hardest and get the W."

Selinger scored seven points on the night and Mathern led the way with 14 points. Seniors Connor Hoenke and Bechtold each earned five boards while adding 12 and 11 points, respectively.

"When you're rebounding, that's the one thing you can control," Glasser said. "You can control boxing out, you can't always control where the ball goes, but you can control being in the right spot and making an effort to go get the ball."

Even as Williston fired back, the Midgets kept up the effort. Down by as much as 20 in the first half, the Coyotes used a seven-point run to trim the deficit.

Dickinson led 35-26 at the half.

Senior William Brown scored 22 points for the Coyotes, eight of which came from the free throw line.

For much of the second half, the visitors were down by 10, but were relentless in their push down the stretch.

"We're a gritty group," Williston head coach Jeff Winslow said. "This is my second year and we're really trying to change mentality. Our guys are battling to to the end. That's what we want, regardless of score."

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While the win wrapped up the regular season, the Midgets will face Turtle Mountain on Friday in a WDA play in game to determine who advances to the tournament.

"For Friday I want to carry over our defense," Glasser said. "Like I said, I think that's the reason that we've been in games lately and we were able to get one tonight."

Selinger said the win was 'for the boys,' especially the seven seniors.

"We go by 'for the boys' because we work hard for eachother," he said. "We know how much time we put into the game."

Dickinson High 65, Williston 54

W: William Brown 22, Dawson Sheets 7, Paul MacSteves 6, Sam Olson 5, Jorn Everson 5, Brady Aberle 4, Garrett Hill 3, Koby Klassen 2.

D: Krew Mathern 14, Connor Hoenke 12, Dawson Bechtold 11, Braden Selinger 7, Tallon Klatt 7, Aidan Levorson 6, Nathan Personne 4, Sheldon Meyer 2, Martin Lopez 2.

Halftime: D 35, W 26. 3-pointers: W 5-21 (MacSteves 2-4), D 3-13 (Levorsen 2-4). Free throws: W 13-20, D 12-20. Total fouls: W 21, D 20. Records: W 3-18, D 6-15).

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Midget junior Martin Lopez puts up a shot against Williston on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at the DHS gym. (Shelby Reardon / The Dickinson Press)
Midget junior Martin Lopez puts up a shot against Williston on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at the DHS gym. (Shelby Reardon / The Dickinson Press)

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