FARGO —A Jadyn Feist basket with just over two minutes remaining proved to be the difference, as West Fargo Sheyenne clinched a berth in the state tournament with a 56-50 victory against West Fargo in an East Region girls basketball state-qualifying game at the Scheels Center.
The North Dakota Class A state tournament starts next Thursday in Bismarck.
"We're not just happy to be there," said Sheyenne head coach Brent Hintz. "We got there last year and it was a great experience. Our goal this year is to not just go to state, it's to go to state and make some noise."
A lead that changed hands seven times in the second half switched for the final time, as the Mustangs, who forced a backcourt violation on the ensuing Packer possession, got Feist a clean look in the post. She converted to give the Mustangs a 49-48 lead.
Sheyenne shot 6 of 25 from the field in the first half, but got a bit of a break going into the locker room, as Maggie Manson was fouled and sank two free throws with one second remaining in the half. Manson, who was scoreless until that point, finished with a team-high 13 points, and helped the Mustangs open the second half on a 6-0 run to tie the score.
The Packers took their final lead with just over three minutes to play on a basket by McKenna Becher, who finished with a game-high 17 points and 10 rebounds.
Half: WF 29, WFS 23
WF: Becher 17, Diemert 13, Pfau 6, Donarski 4, Walsvik 3, Giesen 3, Schatz 2, Johnson 2.
WFS: Manson 13, Johnson 12, Feist 9, Dokara 9, Goodiron 5, Huseth 4, Dobrinz 2, Blasczyk 2.
Grand Forks Red River 66, Fargo Davies 56
Red River built a 14-point lead less than six minutes into the game and never trailed as the Roughriders defeated the Eagles to earn a spot in next week's Class A state tournament in Bismarck.
Senior guard Kenady Steffan sank two early 3-point shots to help Red River build a 16-2 lead after Shelby Frank scored on a short jump shot with 12 minutes, 50 seconds to play in the first half.
"It was very critical," said Steffan, who finished with a game-high 16 points and six steals. "Before the game, we really wanted to focus in on being a big team. We haven't really had that great game as a team this year. ... We just wanted to go out there and have fun."
Taylor Fey led Davies (13-12) with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Ava Wild added 10 points and three rebounds. Red River (15-8) led by as many as 17 points in the second half. The Eagles rallied to cut the lead to 53-47 after Alyssa Paper sank a 3-pointer with 4:36 remaining. Davies cut the lead to six points once again in the final minute, but couldn't get any closer.
"I think our mindset was we just want to win. We want to go to state and we'll do anything we can to do that," Steffan said.
Half: RR 28, FD 19
RR: Steffan 16, Jad. Sondrol 13, Frank 12, Page 9, Robson 6, Leach 5, Jas. Sondrol 4, Burris 1.
FD: Fey 12, Wild 10, Paper 9, Wacha 9, Schock 7, Froslie 6, Safranski 3.