HURON — A combination of points resulting from a pressure defense and points on long-range jumpers helped the Mitchell girls’ basketball team to its second win of the season against Huron on Saturday at Huron Arena.
The Kernels converted on 10 of 22 shots from 3-point range to pull away for a 67-46 victory.
“At the beginning of the game we gave them the layups, which really killed us,” Huron coach Tim Buddenhagen said. “In the first half we had 11 turnovers and they had 14 steals. Every time they stole it, then all of a sudden it was a two on one or they had a breakaway layup and just broke our back to begin with. Then we cleaned that up, got some easy baskets and got into transition.
“We were 2 of 13 from the 3-point line and they are 10 of 22 and Brookings was 5 of 10 on Thursday, so the last couple games teams are 15 of 32 against us,” he said. “The great equalizer in basketball is you have to be able to shoot the ball, and we have to develop that in this program. We have to develop shooters, I don’t care how tall you are, I have to believe you can shoot that shot.”
Mitchell, which improved to 4-3, built a 7-2 advantage in the opening quarter before the Tigers stormed back to even the score. Sami Shoultz started the rally with a conventional 3-point play on a fast-break lay in, and Tenley Buddenhagen followed with a jumper in the paint.
A steal and layup by Havyn Heinz, which was turned into to a 3-point play as she was fouled in the process, provided Huron with its only lead of the game at 11-9.
The lead was short-lived, as Haley Hohn netted her only points of the game on the ensuing possession to pull the Kernels even at 11-11, where it would stay until the quarter break.
Mitchell would score the first six points of the second quarter to build a lead it would never relinquish.
Kylie Overbay would break the run by Kernels with a jumper. She would hit a second jumper moments later to slim the deficit to 19-15 for the Tigers.
Huron’s defense would slow Mitchell’s fast-break opportunities during the final four minutes of the opening half, but the Kernels would find their range from the outside to stretch the lead. Payton Morgan and Jordyn Cranny connected on back-to-back 3-pointers to propel Mitchell to a 31-18 lead. They would hold a 31-22 advantage at the half.
The Kernels would lead by as many as 16 points in the third quarter, but back-to-back 3-pointers by Overbay and Heinz kept Mitchell from pulling away. The Heinz jumper pulled the Tigers to within 13 at 48-35 as the third quarter ended.
Morgan would convert on three of her five three pointers in the final quarter to help Mitchell maintain solid control of the lead.
“Mitchell outrebounded us offensively by 11 and then they got three more turnovers than we had, so that is 11 possessions,” Buddenhagen said. “We only got 36 shots and they got 50, so there is a great equalizer. Anytime you get an offensive rebound it is a lot easier to kick it to a wide open man.”
Morgan would finish with 19 points to lead four players in double figures for Mitchell. Miller had 12 points, while Cranny and Tayler Factor finished with 10 points each.
Factor also had 10 rebounds to lead the Kernels to a 31-23 advantage on the boards. Tess Linberg recorded a team-high three steals.
Heinz was the lone player to reach double figures for Huron, which is now 1-6, with 17 points. Her effort included a 10-of-10 showing from the free-throw line.
Overbay had nine points for the Tigers, while Buddenhagen and Shoultz finished with seven points each. Buddenhagen grabbed nine rebounds, while Heinz had four steals.
“Our girls did a nice job of communicating tonight and the body language is a lot better,” Buddenhagen said. “The effort, energy and those things were a lot better. I know it is not a win, but it’s a step in the right direction.”
The Tigers will return to action Tuesday with a 6 p.m. Game at Yankton as part of a doubleheader.
Mitchell 11 31 48 67
Huron 11 22 35 46
Mitchell (4-3): Tess Linbeg 2 1-2 5; Jordyn Cranny 3 1-2 10; Payton Morgan 6 2-2 19; Tayler Factor 5 0-1 10; Mackenzie Miller 6 0-0 12; Mandy Schmidt 1 0-0 3; Avia Haley 1 1-2 3; Camryn Krogman 0 2-2 2; Haley Hohn 1 0-1 2. Totals: 25 7-12 67.
Huron (1-6): Kylie Overbay 4 0-0 9; Tenley Buddenhagen 1 5-6 7; Havyn Heinz 3 10-10 17; Sami Shoultz 2 3-5 7; Brooke Schiltz 1 0-0 2; Bella Shreeve 1 2-2 4. Totals: 12 20-23 46.
Rebounds: M 31 (Factor 10); H 23 (Buddenhagen 9). 3-point goals: M 10-22 (Morgan 5, Cranny 3, Schmidt 1, Haley 1); H 2-13 (Overbay 1, Heinz 1). Turnovers: M 15; H 18. Assists: M na; H 1. Steals: M 14 (Lindberg 3); H 9 (Heinz 4). Fouls: M 19; H 13.