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Kernel boys struggle in loss at RC Central

RAPID CITY — The second loss of the season for the Mitchell High School boys basketball team was a frustrating one.

Mitchell committed 26 turnovers and saw a five-point halftime deficit balloon to 25 by game's end, as Rapid City Central moved to 4-0 on the season with a 68-43 win over the Kernels Friday.

"I'll be honest, I was really disappointed in the way we handled the second half," Mitchell coach Todd Neuendorf said. "It was probably as upset as I've been with these guys since I took over as coach. Instead of rallying around each other when things got tough, we pointed fingers. This is a team game and we didn't lose as a team. We lost as individuals."

Mitchell (0-2) managed to get through the first 16 minutes of play down 26-21 but committed more than 15 turnovers in the same span. Neuendorf said the Kernels need to be able to find a way to break old habits on offense.

"We went back to doing things (the players') way," Neuendorf said. "We need to be doing things the coaches' way. We burned three or four timeouts in the first half ... and when we ran the plays we needed to run, we had success. We just had way too much dribbling and 1-on-1 basketball out there."

Kailleb Walton-Blanden scored a game-high 21 points for Rapid City Central, while Cameron Hall had 12 points and Dylan Hay had 11 points in the victory. Carter Cavanaugh had 13 points to lead Mitchell, while Derek Factor had 12 points and Jordon Johnson tacked on eight, as Mitchell knocked down seven 3-pointers.

But Mitchell was also outpaced at the free-throw line, shooting just three attempts for the game, while the Cobblers converted 14 of 21 free throws. Rapid City Central also shot 53 percent in the second half to pull away.

"Our defense was non-existent," Neuendorf said. "We got after the guys and they should have got the message. If we don't change things, we're going to struggle."

Mitchell plays Rapid City Stevens (2-1) at 2:30 p.m. Central time today in Rapid City.

Rapid City Christian 68, Mitchell 43

Mitchell (0-2): Kiel Nelson 0-1 0-0 0 Jordon Johnson 3-7 0-0 8 Kaden Soukup 0-1 0-0 0 Derek Factor 4-6 0-0 12 Tate Larson 0-1 0-0 0 Carter Cavanaugh 6-15 0-0 13 Koby Larson 0-2 0-0 0 Baley Miller 1-1 0-0 3 Carter Jacobsen 0-1 1-2 1 Isaiah Jacobsen 0-0 0-0 0 Vincent Michael 3-5 0-1 6 Totals 17-40 1-3 43

Rapid City Central (4-0): Dylan Hay 5-12 1-1 11 Kailleb Walton-Blanden 8-14 5-8 21 Jaxson Schmaltz 1-3 0-0 2 Camden Talley 1-8 1-2 3 Tod Stephens 2-2 4-5 9 DaSean Afraid of Lightening 0-0 0-0 0 Cameron Hall 4-7 1-2 12 Elijah Williams 4-7 0-0 8 Kyle Elder 0-1 0-0 0 Jaleel Snipes 0-0 0-0 0 Erik Koehane 0-0 2-2 2 Mason McBride 0-2 0-1 0 Totals 25-56 14-21 68

M 8 21 33 43

RCC 8 26 46 68

3-pointers: M 7-18 (Factor 3, Johnson 2, Cavanaugh, Miller), RCC 4-21 (Cameron Hall 3, Stephens); Rebounds: M 30 (Johnson 6), RCC 29 (Walton-Blanden 8); Total fouls: M 17, RCC 10. Fouled out: Miller. Assists: M 11 (Nelson 3), RCC 6 (Hay 3), Turnovers: M 26, RCC 7.

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