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Dickinson High boys basketball overwhelms Mandan to keep state hopes alive

BISMARCK -- The offense carried over. Luckily for Dickinson High, the shaky defense from the night before did not. The Midgets boys basketball team kept its season alive with a much-improved defensive effort in a 75-58 victory on Friday against M...

Dickinson High senior Cam Jorda flies past Mandan's Trey Wiest on Friday during the West Region Tournament at the Bismarck Event Center. (Parker Cotton / The Dickinson Press)
Dickinson High senior Cam Jorda flies past Mandan's Trey Wiest on Friday during the West Region Tournament at the Bismarck Event Center. (Parker Cotton / The Dickinson Press)

BISMARCK - The offense carried over. Luckily for Dickinson High, the shaky defense from the night before did not.

The Midgets boys basketball team kept its season alive with a much-improved defensive effort in a 75-58 victory on Friday against Mandan in a loser-out game at the West Region Tournament at the Bismarck Event Center.

The No. 2-seeded Midgets were upset in Thursday's quarterfinals after allowing No. 7 seed Bismarck St. Mary's to shoot 58 percent for the game; the No. 6 Braves were limited to 18 of 48 from the field (37.5 percent).

"We had a team meeting (Friday) morning, and we had to talk about how disappointed we were in our effort. We know we didn't leave everything out on the court," Dickinson head coach Dan Glasser said. "What hurt us the most (Thursday) was we weren't moving when the ball moved, and we were waiting until our guy caught the ball and then we would go guard him, and (Friday) we did a better job of when the ball moved all five guys moved."

The victory sends the Midgets to a state-qualifying game against Bismarck Legacy at 2:30 p.m. (CT) Saturday. Mandan's season ends with a 10-13 overall record.

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Dickinson senior center Jordan Meidinger picked up two fouls in the first four minutes of the game and sat the rest of the half. Senior guard Aanen Moody provided an early offensive lift, however, scoring 16 before halftime. He finished with 24.

"We were were ahead so I figured there was no point to put Jordan back in there and let him pick up a third (foul)," Glasser said, "so I thought Aanen did a good job of carrying the offensive load while he was out."

Shawn Steffan added eight first-half points, and so did Tanner Ouellette, who had gone scoreless on Thursday. Dickinson led 46-29 at the break.

Steffan finished the game with nine, and Ouellette ended with 10, including a pair of three-pointers.

"Yesterday, I don't think I was there mentally," Ouellette said. "Today, I just had to relax, and I thought, 'Just do what you usually do,' and they were falling today. Everyone was shooting well and playing well."

Dickinson held a healthy lead for much of the second half, but with fewer than 10 minutes to play, the Braves got within nine points. Midgets senior Kaiden Steckler responded with a three-pointer from the left wing, and Moody dropped a no-look pass to Cam Jorda in the lane for a reverse layup and a 14-point lead. Mandan didn't threaten again.

"Kaiden hit a big three right there. They were making a little run," Glasser said. "I thought that really closed the door, to be honest. ... He needs to be aggressive like that, and he didn't think about that shot at all. That's great to see his confidence rising."

Brothers Camren and Trae Steckler scored 16 and 15 points, respectively, for Mandan and Jaden Andresen also scored 15.

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After shooting 57 percent against St. Mary's on the way to 95 points, Dickinson followed it up with a 52.5-percent showing. Steckler finished with seven points, and Jorda had 11. Eli Jung tallied eight points, nine rebounds and two blocks. Meidinger was limited to four points and five boards in limited play after picking up two quick fouls to open the second half, as well.

"Everyone was in the game today," Dickinson senior guard Tanner Ouellette said. "Everybody wanted to help our team out because it could have been our last game."

Dickinson High 75, Mandan 58

M: Camren Steckler 16, Trae Steckler 15, Jaden Andresen 15, Trey Weist 4, Landon Kleingartner 2, Elijah Klein 2, Brady Bohl 2, Tyler Tweten 2.

DHS: Aanen Moody 24, Cam Jorda 11, Tanner Ouellette 10, Shawn Steffan 9, Eli Jung 8, Kaiden Steckler 7, Jordan Meidinger 4, Chase Ballard 2.

Halftime: DHS 46, M 29. 3-pointers: M 4-15 (C. Steckler 2-5, Wiest 1-4, Andresen 1-3, Kleingartner 0-2, T. Steckler 0-1), DHS 4-13 (Ouellette 2-3, Moody 1-7, Steckler 1-1, Steffan 0-1, Isaac Egli 0-1). Free throws: M 16-24, DHS 7-12. Total fouls: M 13, DHS 18. Rebounds: M 38 (T. Steckler 13), DHS 31 (Jung 9). Assists: M 7 (Wiest 3), DHS 12 (Moody 5). Steals: M 2 (Andresen 1, T. Steckler 1), DHS 5 (Jorda 2). Blocks: M 3 (T. Steckler 2), DHS 4 (Jung 2). Turnovers: M 21, DHS 12.

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