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Miners hold off Mott-Regent down the stretch

HAZEN -- Playing its first game in nearly two weeks, the Beulah High boys basketball team was eager to shake off any possible rust. The Miners shot lights out in the first half and withstood a late rally, capturing a 67-59 victory over Mott-Regen...

Mott-Regent senior guard Tanner Zentner pushing the ball up the court while being defended by Beulah senior guard Mason Dolbec during the first half of the Region 7 Tournament opener on Thursday, March 8 from the Bison Arena. (Patrick Bernadeau/The Dickinson Press)
Mott-Regent senior guard Tanner Zentner pushing the ball up the court while being defended by Beulah senior guard Mason Dolbec during the first half of the Region 7 Tournament opener on Thursday, March 8 from the Bison Arena. (Patrick Bernadeau/The Dickinson Press)

HAZEN - Playing its first game in nearly two weeks, the Beulah High boys basketball team was eager to shake off any possible rust.

The Miners shot lights out in the first half and withstood a late rally, capturing a 67-59 victory over Mott-Regent in the opening game of the Region 7 tournament on Thursday, March 8 from Bison Arena.

After the tournament was postponed three days due to weather, the top-seeded Miners jumpedout of the gate, shooting 63 percent from the field in the first half.

"It'll be two weeks tomorrow since our last game ," Beulah head coach Jeremy Brandt said. "
It's been a long time since we played so you always kind of worry about how you are going to come out, especially with this time of the year with that long a break."

Wildfire senior guard Tanner Zentner scored the game's opening basket on a drive to the basket. However, Beulah rattled off the next 10 points. With a comfortable advantage, the Miners led 22-9 at the end of the first period.

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Mott-Regent opened the second quarter with an 11-4 run, capped by a three-point play from senior guard Aaron Roth. Beulah's lead dwindled down to 26-20 before the Miners regained control toward the end of the half.

Off of wild scramble, eighth-grader Trey Brandt knocked down a wide-open 3-pointer as the Miners entered halftime with a 42-26 lead.

"I thought we were aggressive offensively in the first half," Brandt said. "The big part is I thought we did a good job of attacking. We hit some shots, but I thought our kids were aggressive to the lane and to the basket for the most part. We put up some offensive rebounds and that helped as well, but like I said our aggressiveness was good."

Beulah opened up as much as a 20-point lead at the start of the second half, sparked by a showtime play from senior guard Derek Freebee.

Grabbing a long defensive rebound, Freebee pushed the ball up the court and delivered a no-look, behind-the-back pass to senior forward Logan Miller, who finished the highlight with a three-point play.

"Derek and I have played a lot of years together," said Miller, who scored a game high 22 points. "We kind of know where each other are on the court so I was expecting the [pass]."

Mott-Regent did not go down easy. The Wildfire cut the deficit to single digits following a putback from junior guard Cody Perkins. A Zentner 3-pointer got Mott-Regent within six with just over two minutes remaining.

Miller scored inside on a hook shot, adding to the breathing room. After the two teams traded baskets, Perkins drilled a 3-pointer, bringing the gap to 64-59 with 30.2 second remaining before Miners free throws ended it.

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Ferebee scored 15 points for the Miners. Zentner, who was nursing a bum ankle, and Perkins each tallied 17 points, pacing the Wildfire. Mott-Regent senior guard Hunter Crist added 15 points.

"I'm so proud of our effort and our overall season. We came out short tonight before our boys showed a lot of heart," Wildfire head coach Nate Zachmann said. "I have a saying to the guys that I say: 'I've never lost a game, my boys just ran out of time.' I want them to take that to heart."

No. 1 Beulah 67, No. 8 Mott-Regent 59

MR 9 17 16 17

B 22 20 16 9

MR: Cody Perkins 17, Tanner Zentner 17, Hunter Crist 15, Aaron Roth 4, Caleb Candrian 4, Asad Watson-Buffalo 2.

B: Logan Miller 22, Derek Ferebee 17, Mason Dolbec 9, Aaron Vallejo 8, Trey Brandt 7, Michael Schmidt 1.

3-pointers: MR 4 (Perkins 3), B 4 (Ferebee 2). Free throws: MR 9-14, B 11-19. Total fouls: MR 18, B 14. Fouled out: 3 (MR: Zentner 5, Perkins 5). Rebounds: MR 29 (Perkins 9), B 43 (Dolbec 8). Steals: MR 4 (Crist 2), B 4 (Miller 2). Blocks: MR 1 (Crist 1), B 0. Turnovers: MR 7, B 13. Records: MR 13-10, B 18-4.

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Beulah senior forward Logan Miller looks to drive by Wildfire junior guard Cody Perkins during the second half of the Region 7 Tournament opener on Thursday, March 8 from the Bison Arena. (Patrick Bernadeau/The Dickinson Press)
Beulah senior forward Logan Miller looks to drive by Wildfire junior guard Cody Perkins during the second half of the Region 7 Tournament opener on Thursday, March 8 from the Bison Arena. (Patrick Bernadeau/The Dickinson Press)

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