Hertz keeps playing, apparatuses and all
MacKenzie Hertz is difficult to miss when she steps on a basketball court. The Mott-Regent senior is the one who looks like she's prepared for a war, not a game. Injuries to her shoulders and nose haven't even slowed Hertz, who leads the sixth-se...
MacKenzie Hertz is difficult to miss when she steps on a basketball court.
The Mott-Regent senior is the one who looks like she's prepared for a war, not a game.
Injuries to her shoulders and nose haven't even slowed Hertz, who leads the sixth-seeded Wildfire into the District 13 girls basketball tournament which begins today at Knights of Columbus Activities Center. Mott-Regent faces No. 3 seed Hettinger at 7:30 p.m.
Though doctors have urged Hertz to stay off the court, she has turned a deaf ear -- she's even signed a letter of intent to play for Jamestown College next season.
"I wouldn't ever stop. I don't care what happens," Hertz said. "The doctors told me to stop playing last year. Then they realized I wasn't going to stop playing so they just kept making me new braces for it to try and prevent me from hurting myself."
Hertz wears a brace or straps across her shoulders, a result of tearing her left labrum last season during a fight for the basketball with a player from Bowman County last season.
"It was a jump ball and the girl didn't let go and she ran behind my back until it (her shoulder) popped out," Hertz said.
While she has been through physical therapy and rehabilitation, Hertz continues to have problems with both shoulders because she is double-jointed.
And if her shoulder problems weren't enough, Hertz also wears a protective facemask to defend her nose, which she has broken six times.
The first time came early in her junior season. After suffering breathing problems, Hertz ended up having emergency surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.
Through it all, she has averaged 12 points, seven rebounds and seven assists per game this season and been a consistent standout for the Wildfire, who enter the district tournament with a 7-11 record.
"I'm just playing through the pain," Hertz said. "After a while, it doesn't affect you anymore."
Without Hertz, Mott-Regent head coach Brad Greff said his first season with the Wildfire could have been difficult.
"I said, 'I'm going to need someone to take over and be the team leader and that's going to be you Mac,'" Greff said. "She has really stepped up to the plate."
Since the Wildfire a young team with few upperclassmen leaders, Hertz has had to handle much of the load.
Nonetheless, she's ready for a few more battles and feels the Wildfire have a good chance to come out on the winning end a couple times and find their way to the Region 7 tournament.
"We're going to fight for it," Hertz said. "We're not going to let anybody stop us."
Top-seed Trinity not overlooking anyone
Dickinson Trinity head coach Alysia Barman said her team can't get too overconfident heading into the District 14 tournament.
The Titans are the No. 1 seed after going 5-0 in the district and 15-4 overall this season.
"I think that we're excited about being the No. 1 seed, but we can't overlook anybody right now," Barman said. "There's five other teams that are playing very good basketball and peaking at the right time. The biggest thing is we've got to make sure we're not overlooking anybody, that we come and make sure we focus on the things we do well."
The Titans have three players scoring in double figures.
Senior Katie Kovash averages 14 points, five rebounds and four steals a game. Junior center Nikki Grinsteinner chips in 11 points and eight rebounds per game and senior guard Mackenzie Glasser averages 11 points per game.
Trinity and No. 2-seeded Killdeer have byes.
The Cowboys are led by junior Megan Klein and her cousin, senior Emily Doe. However, Doe has been hampered by injuries this season.
"She's somebody you've got be ready for," Barman said of Doe. "You've got to prepare for Killdeer to have her."
District 13 Tournament
At Knights of Columbus Activities Center
1) No. 4 Scranton vs. No. 5 Bowman County, 4:30 p.m.
2) No. 2 Heart River No. 7 New England, 6 p.m.
3) No. 3 Hettinger vs. No. 6 Mott-Regent, 7:30 p.m.
4) Game 2 loser vs. Game 3 loser, 4:30 p.m.
5) No. 1 Beach vs. Game 1 winner, 6 p.m.
6) Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner, 7:30 p.m.
Games Monday, Feb. 28
Region qualifier: Game 1 loser vs. Game 6 loser, 4:30 p.m.
Region qualifier: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner, 6 p.m.
Championship: Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner, 7:30 p.m.
District 14 Tournament
At Beulah High School (all times Central)
1) No. 4 Hazen vs. No. 5 Richardton-Taylor, 6 p.m.
2) No. 3 Beulah vs. No. 6 Glen Ullin-Hebron, 7:30 p.m.
3) No. 1 Dickinson Trinity vs. Game 1 winner, 6 p.m.
4) No. 2 Killdeer vs. Game 2 winner, 7:30 p.m.
Games Monday, Feb. 28
Region qualifier: Game 1 loser vs. Game 4 loser, 4:30 p.m.
Region qualifier: Game 2 loser vs. Game 3 loser, 6 p.m.
Championship: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 7:30 p.m.