Killdeer boys basketball hangs on for win over Mott-Regent
Andy Murphy knew coming into the season that his Killdeer boys basketball team was going to be lacking some bodies on the bench.What depth the Cowboys did have dug deep Tuesday, holding on to a 47-42 victory over Mott-Regent in the first round of...
Andy Murphy knew coming into the season that his Killdeer boys basketball team was going to be lacking some bodies on the bench.
What depth the Cowboys did have dug deep Tuesday, holding on to a 47-42 victory over Mott-Regent in the first round of the Roughrider Tournament at the Knights of Columbus Activities Center.
“We don’t have the depth, so they know there’s going to be a lot asked of them,” Murphy said. “When you go seven guys, maybe eight some days, these kids are going to be in shape, and they’ll know how to end games.”
That much was evident Tuesday.
Mott-Regent trailed 45-42 with 11 seconds left, and the Cowboys missed two consecutive free throws, but the Wildfire failed to get the defensive rebound to give themselves another chance. Killdeer sophomore Alex Sadowsky knocked down two free throws to account for the final margin.
“It was a three-point game, and we miss that box out,” Wildfire head coach Nate Zachmann said, “and they get the rebound, and I turned to the bench and said, ‘That’s the story of the game.’”
The Cowboys used their height and length to earn a 50-35 advantage on the glass, including 20 offensive rebounds. Killdeer senior Shane Starr led all players with 13 boards.
Sadowsky, Garrett LeMieux and Hayes LeMieux - all listed at 6-foot-3 or taller - caused matchup problems for the Wildfire the entire game. Hayes, a senior, led all players with 15 points, and Garrett and Sadowsky added 14 and 10, respectively.
“We’re the taller, lengthy team, but that’s also a problem because we don’t have many guards to bring the ball up,” Murphy said. “We’re asking our tall guys to bring the ball up, but on defense it’s such an advantage because the passing lanes close that much faster and they’re that much smaller.”
Zachmann thought his team looked a little stiff on the floor, the result of emotions running high.
“Tonight, we were thinking and not playing,” he said. “In basketball, you just have to react. We were thinking too much out there and not playing ball.”
Senior forward Brett Messmer scored 12 points to lead the Wildfire, and senior guard Chance Roth followed with 11. As a team, Mott-Regent shot just 3 of 22 on 3-point attempts.
Killdeer will face Trinity at 6 p.m. Thursday at the Knights of Columbus Activities Center. The Wildfire will face Bowman County at 3 p.m. Thursday.