Drayton-Valley-Edinburg, North Border win in first round of play
The Titans had little trouble handing the Tornadoes an opening round loss as they rode the tall shoulders of senior Kadee Gullickson to an easy 26 point win. Gullickson would score 23 on the night and in the process score career points 1,001 midway through the fourth quarter.
Gullickson would start strong for the Titans, scoring ten of the Titans first thirteen points as the Titans built up an early 13 to 4 lead. A Kari Olson basket at the end of the quarter would close out the first eight minutes with the Titans on top 20 to 7.
The Tornadoe’s Leighanna Helgoe would try to keep Cavalier in this one as she knocked down a pair of buckets early in the second but the Titans would answer with another Gullickson basket inside and a three-pointer by Haley Braathen that made it 31 to 14 with two minutes to play in the half. A three-point play by Courtney Estad would close out the half with the Titans on top 34 to 16.
Gullickson would be the main go-to girl in the second half for the Titans. The senior would go on to score a game high 23 points. Her basket with 2:53 to play in the game would put her over the 1,000 point mark for her career. The Titans cruised to a 52 to 47 win.
Behind Gullickson’s 23, the Titans picked up 9 points from Kari Olson, 8 points each from Shayna Phelps and Haley Braathen, Alex Braathen 4, Courtney Estad 3 and Jaylyn Larson 2.
Cavalier was paced by Natalie Olason’s 10. Shelby Helgoe chipped in 5, Julia Hartz and Leighanna Helgoe each had 4. Ronica Helgoe and Paige O’Hara each had 2.
North Border 52
A 14 to 2 third quarter run broke open a close opening round game between the North Border Eagles and the Park River-Fordville-Lankin-Aggies (PR-F-L). The Eagles used the offensive spurt to knock off the Aggies 52 to 47 in the first game of the District 4 tournament.
This was a game of runs for both teams. The Eagles used a quick start to jump on the Aggies in the first quarter. Tied at two early, North Border went on a 10 to 3 run behind the outside shooting of sophomore Alayna Reck (9 pts). Reck hit a pair of three-pointers that helped put the Eagles up 12 to 5 at the start of the second quarter. From there it was the Lafferty sisters, Jordan and Maddie, who ate up the Aggies interior defense and pushed the Eagle lead to 19 to 9.
The Aggies would battle back late in the quarter however with their own inside game. Brogan Novak (12 pts) would score three times over the last two minutes of the half, her last basket gave PR-F-L their first lead of the game at 21 to 19. The run by the Aggies was capped off by an Ashley Fontaine free throw which had the Aggies on top 22 to 21 heading to the halftime locker room.
The Eagles would respond in the third quarter outscoring the Aggies 14 to 8. This time it was the heady play of senior Kyla Horgan that sparked the Eagle rally. Horgan would score eight of her eleven points in the second half, two of those a heads up play on a missed Eagle free throw. Horgan gathered up a loose rebound when everyone else stood and watched and put it back in making it 28 to 22. Eagle coach Dave Johnson was pleased with the play of his team and Horgan. “Kyla’s really been coming around for us,” Johnson said, “she’s missed some games due to her knee but she’s playing very well right now.” “Overall this wasn’t our best basketball game of the year but we put ourselves in a good position to get back to regionals.”
PR-F-L didn’t roll over as they backed in and tied the game at 39 with a little over five minutes to play. The worst time to go on a scoring slump is at the end of a close game and that’s what the Aggies did. The Eagles would close this one out as the Aggies went scoreless over the last two minutes of the game. Maddie Lafferty would score twice in the final minute to secure the win.
Maddie Lafferty led all scorers with 16 points. Novak led the Aggies with 12 points. Ashley Fontaine had 11, Sadie Vold 8, Whitney Carlson 6, Anne Welch and Morgan Porter 3, Taylor Knutson and Bailey Beneda 2.