Tigers collect win against Yankton


YANKTON — In a game marked by scoring spurts from both teams, the Huron Tigers got the last big push and held off the Yankton Bucks for a 56-50 win in an Eastern South Dakota Conference boys’ basketball win Tuesday night in the Summit Center. Tiger senior CJ Gainey scored 22 points for the Tigers, 12 of them in the final period as Huron built a big lead and held on for the win.

“We overcame a lot of physicality tonight,” said Tiger coach Tim Buddenhagen after the win. “We weren’t able to drive to the basket the way we wanted, but I thought we did a really good job of passing the ball, getting it to the open guy and making shots when we needed them tonight, especially in the fourth quarter.”

Huron improves to 4-2 on the season with the win, while Yankton falls to 1-5.

Both teams started slowly, and they shared a 2-2 score after three minutes of play, when Blake Ellwein picked up his second personal foul of the game, as he was whistled for an offensive foul on a drive.

The Bucks responded with Huron’s basket protector on the bench, with baskets on consecutive possessions, as first Matthew Sheldon, then Landon Potts converted buckets in the lane to give Yankton a 6-2 lead.

Huron responded with a pair of three pointers from freshman Andrew Porisch, sandwiched around a deuce from Tate Beste for the Bucks to forge an 8-8 tie. Huron took the lead on a put back from Holden Hegg, before Colt McNeil hit a pair of charity tosses.

But Yankton scored the last eight points of the quarter, as Potts connected on a three-point field goal and Carson Ness converted a traditional three-point play.

Ellwein returned in the second quarter and immediately got a rebound and basket. The teams traded baskets and Yankton held a 21-16 lead after a Potts three. The remainder of the quarter, however, belonged to the Tigers.

Porisch got a basket to go, Ellwein hit one-of-two from the line before Gavin Moeding, Porisch and CJ Gainey hit short shots as Huron worked for easy shots and converted when they got them.

A teardrop from Carsen Evans gave Huron a 27-21 lead and a McNeil trey pushed it to nine points with just over a minute to play. A late steal and layup by Potts sent the teams to the locker room with Huron leading 30-23.

A quick deuce by McNeil pushed the lead back to nine points, but then it was the Bucks’ turn to make a run, as Yankton ran eight straight points and suddenly trailed by only a point, at 32-31.

Gainey drove the late on the next Tiger possession and Potts was whistled for his third foul. Gainey hit one of two, but took the ball to the hoop on the next Huron possession and pushed the lead back to four points.

A nice drive by Moeding pushed the lead back to six and only a late Yankton free throw stemmed the 5-0 mini Huron, as the Tigers held a 37-32 lead after a ragged third quarter by both squads.

Huron’s Anderson Porisch spots up for a three-point attempt during the Tigers’ Eastern South Dakota Conference boys’ basketball game against Yankton, Tuesday at the Yankton High School Gym.

Gainey opened the fourth quarter with a three-point basket, but Yankton responded with six straight points and got the lead down to two points, at 40-38, but that was as close as they would get, as the Tigers increased their defensive intensity and began to force the Bucks out of their comfort zone.

Porisch scored in the lane, then Gainey scored back to back baskets, the second on a slick steal and coast-to-coast drive that put Huron back up by nine, 47-38. Ellwein picked up his fourth foul but the Tigers responded with a shot clock violation and converted the possession into a Porisch basket that pushed the lead to double digits, 49-38.

Potts hit a bucket for Yankton, but Gainey dialed long distance and Huron held a 12-point lead with less than two minutes to play. Potts hit one of two from the line for Yankton and Gainey did the same for the Tigers, but the Bucks scored five quick points and suddenly trailed by only seven points with 48 seconds to play. But Ellwein hit two free throws, Moeding hit one of two, and the Tigers kept Yankton at bay and took the victory.

Gainey led the Tigers with 22 points, Porisch added 14 and led the team with six rebounds, doing most of his scoring early when Huron was struggling to find some offense.

Potts led the Bucks with 22 points before fouling out in the closing minutes of the contest. Tucker Gilmore added 15 points for Yankton and led both teams with 10 rebounds.

“CJ and Gavin have been through it all and they are really taking the lead as we enter this grind of seven games of the next 10 on the road,” Buddenhagen observed. “They controlled the pace, got the ball distributed and also had the defensive responsibility on Yankton’s best guards, Ness and Potts.”

Buddenhagen also noted the effort put forth by Kolton Ogle in the game. Ogle saw extra minutes due to Ellwein’s foul trouble and “did a good job of doing the little things - playing solid defense and rebounding - when we needed it.”

Huron returns to action Saturday, when it travels to Harrisburg in a matchup of the Tigers.

In preliminary action, Huron took the JV contest 44-38, while Yankton ran away with the Sophomore game, 66-28.

Huron     12 30 37 56
Yankton     16 23 32 50

HURON (4-2): Colt McNeil 1 2-2 4; Gavin Moeding 2 1-2 5; Holden Hegg 1 0-0 2; CJ Gainey 8 2-4 22; Blake Ellwein 1 5-6 7; Anderson Porisch 6 0-3 14; Carsen Evans 1 0-0 2. Totals 20 10-17 56.

YANKTON (1-5): Carson Ness 3 1-1 7; Landon Potts 8 3-4 22; Tucker Gilmore 6 3-6 15; Tate Beste 1 0-0 2; Matt Sheldon 2 0-2 4. Totals: 20 7-13 50.

FG: H - 20-43 47%; Y - 20-49 41%. 3-pt FG: H 6 (Gainey 4, Porisch 2); Y - 3 (Potts 3). REB: H - 27 (Porisch 6); Y - 27 (Gilmore 10); TO: H - 11; Y - 12.