Chamberlain struggles from field in loss to Pine RidgeWATERTOWN — The Chamberlain girls’ basketball team struggled to get its offense going at the Class A state tournament Thursday.
By: Aaron Saunders, The Daily Republic
WATERTOWN — The Chamberlain girls’ basketball team struggled to get its offense going at the Class A state tournament Thursday.
The Cubs shot 10-of-39 from the field and 2-of-8 from behind the three-point line, falling to Pine Ridge 55-34 in the first round at Watertown Arena. It was Chamberlain’s second loss of the year and first since Dec. 14, breaking a 19-game win streak.
Thirty-four points is the lowest-scoring total Chamberlain has had in any game this season. The Cubs came into the game averaging 58.3 points with an 18-point average margin of victory.
A pesky Pine Ridge defense played a big part in slowing down the Chamberlain offense. The Thorpes, who were in press defense for the majority of the game, forced the Cubs to commit 21 turnovers.
“I am proud of the way we played. We battled with them all night,” said Chamberlain coach Jeff Neuharth, whose team hit 25.6 percent of its shots in the game. “We just couldn’t get the screens we liked and we couldn’t get an open look all night long. We knew they were going to be the quickest team we have played so far. … Our timing was just never on the entire night.”
Chamberlain and Pine Ridge each started slow out of the gate, and by the end of the first quarter Pine Ridge held an 8-5 lead. The Cubs were 2-of-9 from the field in that quarter and forward/center Jaymee Knippling scored all five of the team’s points.
Pine Ridge picked up its offensive production in the second quarter and put some distance between the two teams with a 5-0 run to begin the quarter, highlighted by a Santana White Dress 3-pointer. White Dress virtually carried the Thorpes in the first half, scoring nine of the team’s 19 points.
The Thorpes blew the game open in the third with help from Jolonna Sazue and Shaylene Richard. Pine Ridge went on a 12-3 run to push its lead to 31-18. During the spurt, Richard scored seven points and Sazue had four.
The Chamberlain offense looked to get the ball down low to Knippling and center Logan Pickner, but had trouble getting the ball across court because of the Thorpes’ defense. When Knippling and Pickner touched the ball on the blocks, a swarm of Pine Ridge defenders crashed down and attempted to block or alter shots.
“It was a tough loss, but they were a good team,” said Knippling, who scored seven points. “We played as well as we could, but we couldn’t hit our shots. They were tough, they were quick and they were causing a lot of turnovers. … We are used to being double-downed in the post. We just have to hit our shots.”
No Chamberlain player scored in double figures. Kennedy Wagner also had seven points for the Cubs and Logan Pickner added six. They each had a team-best six rebounds.
The loss sends Chamberlain to the consolation bracket, where the Cubs meet Spearfish at 1:45 p.m. today in Watertown.
PINE RIDGE 55, CHAMBERLAIN 34
CHAMBERLAIN (21-2): Wagner 1-9 5-6 7, Byrd 2-4 2-3 6, Goodlow 0-3 1-2 1, Valandra 1-1 0-0 2, Glaus 0-1 1-2 1, Pederson 1-4 0-0 3, Handel 1-4 0-0 3, Knipping 3-4 ‘1-4 7, Pickner 0-1 0-0 0, Reuer 1-6 2-4 4, Thompson 0-2 0-0 0. Totals: 10-39 12-21 34.
PINE RIDGE (21-1): Lebeau 0-1 0-0 0, Robeau 0-1 0-0 0, Shan. Richard 3-9 1-3 9, Bettelyoun 3-8 1-2 8, Sazue 4-12 0-0 10, Bravo 1-4 0-0 2, White Dress 4-10 0-2 9, Shay. Richard 5-12 2-5 12, Standing Bear 0-1 1-2 1, Martin 1-6 0-0 2, Slow Bear 1-1 0-0 2.
Chamberlain 5 12 18 34
Pine Ridge 8 19 34 55
3-pointers: Chamberlain 2-8 (Goodlow 0-1, Pederson 1-3, Handel 1-3, Thompspon 0-1), Pine Ridge 6-25 (Lebeau 0-1, Rondeau 0-1, Shan. Richard 2-5, Bettelyoun 1-1, Sazue 2-7, Whitre Dress 1-4, Shay. Richard 0-3, Martin 0-3). Rebounds: Chamberlain 31 (Wagner 6, Pickner 6), Pine Ridge 34 (Bettelyoun 8). Assists: Chamberlain 5 (Wagner 2), Pine Ridge 4 (Sazue 2). Total fouls: Chamberlain 13, Pine Ridge 22. Fouled out: Pederson, Shay. Richard.