JAMESTOWN, N.D. -- Kidder County’s Madelyn Schmidt and Jaslyn Magstadt can dazzle from beyond the 3-point arc, but in the crunch North Dakota’s top-ranked Class B girls basketball team went to its playmaker in the post Tuesday, Feb. 19.
Brittany Rath scored 7 of the Wolves’ 14 points in overtime at the Jamestown Civic Center, keeping Kidder County unbeaten at 23-0 with an 81-72 victory over Carrington in the semifinals of the Region 3 tournament. Kidder County will play LaMoure-Litchville-Marion (20-4) in Thursday’s championship game at 7:30 p.m.
“We wanted to isolate her in the high post,” Kidder County coach Dan Welder said of his 5-foot-9 junior, Rath. “We knew that (Carrington) was going to cut off our shooters quite a bit, and they did a good job of it.”
Schmidt, a sophomore, and Magstadt, the only senior in uniform for the Wolves, combined to convert four 3-pointers in a first half in which Kidder County led by as many as 17 and won 35-24. Magstadt finished with four triples and 18 points, while Schmidt scored 19.
But Carrington, led by juniors Kiera Elia and Addison Hoornaert, came storming back after the break. Eli banged home five 3-pointers off the bench and tossed in 17 of her team-high 20 point past the midway point, while Hoornaert brushed off a sprained ankle suffered in Monday’s quarterfinals to produce 16 points, eight rebounds and seven assists.
Eli scored five straight points to open the fourth quarter, which tied the game at 49-49. The lead changed hands four times in the frame before going to OT at 67-67.
“Great effort, great attitude. We’ve had it all year long,” said Carrington coach Andy Braaten, who had led the Cardinals to the Region 3 championship game in each of the past four seasons. “They just keep battling. Kidder made more plays.”
Kidder County went to Rath and rifled off an 8-0 run to start the 4-minute extra period. The Wolves never looked back, leading 75-67 with 1:13 remaining. Rath finished with a game-high 21 points.
“Just to be a team, help each other out and really work hard those last minutes and not give up,” Rath said of Kidder County’s overtime plan. “We’re pretty excited, but we know we’ve got to work hard and keep playing like we’ve been playing.”
The Wolves are built to hang around awhile. Eighth-grade starter Kennedy Harter posted 16 points and five steals for the Wolves, who’ll be looking for the team’s first state tournament berth since 2014 on Thursday.
L-L-M 61, Oakes 57
LaMoure-Litchville-Marion’s Kaylynn Siedschlag owned the second half of Thursday’s second semifinal against the Tornadoes.
After missing all four shots she took in the first two quarters, the junior sharpshooter knocked down five 3-pointers and scored 19 of the Loboes’ 32 second-half points in a thrilling 61-57 overtime win over Oakes.
“I was pooping my pants. I was like, I need to make some shots,” Siedschlag said. “I just focused myself and I knew I had to step up for my team, cause we all needed to make some shots -- big shots. So we just stepped up, everybody did.”
The Loboes and the Tornadoes were deadlocked at 49-49 at the end of regulation in a game that witnessed 16 lead changes. Trailing 53-51 early in OT, Siedschlag stepped up and buried her first of two 3s in OT and the Loboes would go on to lead by a game-high 7 points.
“She’s a very good basketball player, and she’s a good shooter out there and sometimes that’s the way basketball goes,” said Oakes coach Brendan Hack, who was trying to lead Oakes back to the Class B state tournament for the first time since the school won a state championship in 1997. “Sometimes you’re cold in the first half, and in the second half you can’t miss. All credit to LaMoure, they played very, very well tonight.”