Huron girls rout Kernels

MIKE CARROLL/PLAINSMAN Huron’s Alexis Feenstra puts up a shot as Mitchell’s Maddie Kempf defends on the play during their game Tuesday at Huron Arena.

HURON — A pair of Huron Tiger runs - one of 11 points and the second of nine - added up to a 69-46 win for the Tigers over the Mitchell Kernels in Eastern South Dakota girls’ basketball action Tuesday night at Huron Arena. The win pushed the Tigers’ season record to 4-3 while Mitchell falls to 1-6.

“It was good to get play better and get the win tonight,” said Tiger coach Tim Buddenhagen. “I was happy to see us shoot better from the three-point line than we have been for the past few games.”

After opening the season with three straight wins - one of them a 50-26 decision over the Kernels in early December - Huron had dropped its last three games and needed a solid outing to gain a bit of confidence as the meat of the season looms.

The game started slowly, as the teams traded baskets over the first two-and-a-half minutes.

Bella Shreeve hit her second three pointer of the game, as the clock rolled past the five minute mark, giving the Tigers a lead that they would not relinquish, at 8-5.

Sarah Sebert hit a free throw and Taylor Giblin hit a short jumper for the Kernels to tie the game again, but Bryn Huber dialed long distance for Huron and the Tigers led 11-9 as the quarter expired.

The subplot of the first quarter was foul trouble for Huron, for while the press created more offensive opportunities for the Tigers, some over-aggressive play put Mitchell in the bonus with more than a minute to play in the first quarter.

Whatever Buddenhagen said at the quarter break should be bottled and sold, as the Tigers forced two quick turnovers, which Shreeve and Hamtyn Heinz turned into three-point bombs and when Shreeve hit again from long distance, and Heavan Gainey got a layup off a turnover, the lead was 22-9 after the 11-0 Tiger run that put the Kernels in a deep hole.

“We knew that Mitchell wanted to have (Sawyer) Stoebner get them into their offense,” Buddenhagen said. “We worked to make sure that we trapped her outside and made her give up the ball. Fortunately for us, we got a hand on some of those passes and turned them into points on the other end.”

Huron got the lead to 15 points, on Shreeve’s fifth three of the half, but Mitchell settled in and managed to cut the margin to 12, at 33-21, headed to the halftime break.

Of note in the first half was the return of Isabelle Ellwein to the court after sitting out with an injury sustained during volleyball season. The 5-foot, 8-inch junior got her first basket of the season on a put-back midway through the second quarter and picked up an assist on one of Shreeve’s three-point field goals, on a drive and kick.

If the 11-0 run to open the second quarter slammed the door on the Kernels, Huron’s 9-0 spurt to open the third quarter - courtesy of four different players - nailed it shut. Heinz got things started as she got loose on the baseline off a forced turnover and hit the layup, was fouled and converted the ‘and-one.’ The Tiger half-court trap forced another turnover and Gainey was the beneficiary of the runout, before Alexis Feenstra scored on a put-back, then Ellwein turned a steal into a coast-to-coast trip for a layup that made the score 42-21 and while there was still four minutes to go in the third quarter, the game was all but decided.

Over the final quarter, both teams were able to clear their respective benches and get some younger players valuable varsity experience.

In the game, Shreeve led the Tigers with 20 points, including six threes, Huber came off the bench to score 13 points - she was four of four from distance - and Heinz netted 12 points.

For Mitchell, Sebert scored 20 points, while Stoebner scored 14 and claimed 12 rebounds.

“Having the press work well like it did tonight is a big help,” Buddenhagen said. “It makes them choose their poison - either guard the three and give up a layup, or defend the drive and give us a good look at a three. Of course, we have to knock them down, like we did tonight, when we get that chance.”

Buddenhagen said that the insertion of Ellwein back into the Tiger rotation will help in that regard, as Ellwein is another three-point threat from distance in an offense that seeks points from long distance.

“It was good to have Isabelle back tonight and I thought that our bench really gave us a lift tonight,” Buddenhagen said. “The bench for us is going to be important because it gives us more depth.”

In lower level action, the Huron junior varsity girls got past Mitchell 50-25.

Adison Moore had 17 points to lead three players in double figures for the Tigers. Kristen Janes and Hylton Heinz had 15 and 12 points, respectively.

Huron also won the C-game 46-39.

Hylton Heinz led the way with 14 points, while Maddie Jurgens and Elin Schoenhard each had six points.

Huron returns to action Friday, when it hosts 4-3 Sioux Falls Lincoln at Huron Arena, with a 7 p.m. expected tip.

Mitchell       9 21 30 46
Huron     11 33 54 69

Mitchell (1-5): Taylor Giblin 1 0-0 2; Sawyer Stoebner 4 6-12 14; Sarah Sebert 6 4-6 20; Kaitlyn Christensen 1 1-1 3; Lauren Van Overschelde 1 1-2 3; Delayey Degen 1 0-0 2; Maddie Kempf 0 1-2 1; Delaney Zoss 0 1-2 1. Totals: 14 14-25 46.

Huron (3-3): Bella Shreeve 6 2-2 20; Reese Rozell 0 2-2 2; Hamtyn Heinz 4 1-1 12; Alexis Feenstra 3 0-0 6; Heaven Gainey 3 0-0 6; Bryn Huber 4 1-2 13; Isabelle Ellwein 3 0-1 6; Gracie Culver 1 2-4 4. Totals: 24 8-12 69.

FG: M - 14-39 36%; H - 24-58 41%. 3-pt FG: M - 4-18 22% (Sebert 4); H - 13-37 (Shreeve 6, Huber 4, Heinz 3) 35%. Rebounds: M - 27 (Stoebner 12); H - 27 (Heinz 6). Turnovers: M - 15; H - 8. Fouls: M - 15; H - 22.

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