Brooke Cersosimo is The Daily Republic's sports editor.
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The Winner boys basketball team finished 7-0 to win the Big Dakota Conference title. Chamberlain was second with a 6-1 conference record. Winner and Chamberlain each had two players earn all-conference selections, including Brendan Harter, Nathan Galbraith, Seth Friesz and Adrian Farmer. Honorable mention selections are Chamberlain's Tiegan Priebe and Winner's Lattrel Terkildsen, Sam Naasz and Devon Leiferman. On the girls side, Winner, Todd County and McLaughlin tied for the Big Dakota title with 6-1 records.
KIMBALL -- The 195-pound weight class was arguably one of the toughest at the Class B state wrestling tournament. "There were three or four kids who could've ended up on top," Kimball/White Lake/Platte-Geddes wrestling coach Thomas Konechne said. KWLPG senior Turner Blasius was one of them, along with Parkston's Miles Semmler, Mobridge-Pollock's David Jensen and 2014 state champion Lukas Forsling, of Elk Point-Jefferson. Prior to the state tournament, Blasius had lost to Jensen twice, but got vengeance Saturday.
For the first time this season, the Corn Palace was silent at the end of a Dakota Wesleyan University men's basketball game. In the semifinals of the Great Plains Athletic Conference tournament, No. 3-seeded Midland upset No. 2-seeded DWU 81-74 on Saturday afternoon in front of 2,200 people. "You have to give Midland a lot of credit. They're an athletic team," said DWU second-year coach Matt Wilber, whose team suffered its first home loss of the season. "They played with a lot of energy and juice, and made a lot of plays down the stretch." Despite the loss, the Tigers' season isn't over.
At the 2002 Class B state wrestling tournament, Scott Andal got lost in the moment. McCook Central's heavyweight wrestler Alan Tuschen won the state title after beating Tri-Valley's Casey Van Duyn 2-1 in 2OT -- provoking Andal to do something unexpected. "I did a belly flop," Andal, McCook Central/Montrose's head coach, said. "I have no idea why. I was in amazement. We weren't supposed to win, and that win moved our team from ninth to seventh place, so we got a plaque." Wrestling enthusiasts have learned that the sport's coaches are unlike any other.
HOWARD -- The great thing about champions is they always want more. More wins, more titles, more records. In his senior year at Howard High School, Luke Loudenburg has accomplished more feats than some could think possible. But he's not done yet. Loudenburg, Kain Klinkhammer and Nick Wolf are the only Howard wrestlers to win three state titles. Loudenburg has a chance to become the only Tiger wrestler to win four state wrestling titles this weekend at the Class B state tournament, which begins at 11 a.m.
On Wednesday night, Jalen Voss showed why he's arguably the best player in the Great Plains Athletic Conference. "He really carried us offensively inside, and our guys love giving the ball to him," Dakota Wesleyan University men's basketball coach Matt Wilber said. "He handled a lot of contact and finished a lot of plays. It's the Jalen Voss we know and get everyday." The 6-foot-7 senior forward had a double-double with 28 points and 11 rebounds to lead the No.
Four Mitchell High School wrestlers were named to the all-Eastern South Dakota Conference team, it was announced Wednesday. Seniors Matt Larson, Landon Neugebauer, Ethan Parr and Robert McCardle are each on the list, which is voted on by the conference coaches. "They're all very deserving," Mitchell head coach Travis Carpenter said. "I'm happy for the kids, and they've worked hard to be voted onto that team. It is a great honor." There were 28 wrestlers who were selected as all-conference selections.
Scott Schmidt knows his team had a great regular season, but why stop there? In the second year of Florida National University's men's basketball program, the Conquistadors have a chance to win a national title. FNU was selected Monday as the fifth seed in the United States Collegiate Athletic Association Men's Division I Basketball Championships.
Strong defense late in the game led the Kernels to victory Monday. With 6 seconds left on the clock and after three consecutive full timeouts, the Mitchell boys basketball team tightened its defense and didn't allow Brookings to get a shot off before the final buzzer. With the stop, the Kernels won their final regular-season contest of the season 55-53 over Brookings in an Eastern South Dakota Conference game. "When your shots aren't going in, especially at the end, our kids have a tendency not to play with high energy on the defensive end," Mitchell assistant coach Craig Mock said.
With the regular season coming to a close Monday, Erik Skoglund is looking for some consistency. In the last five games, which saw the Mitchell boys basketball team go 1-4, Skoglund said playing top-notch opponents have had something to do with his team's struggles. "We're playing stiff competition," Skoglund said. "When we put together four quarters together, this team can beat anybody. We just haven't done that yet." In their last five contests, the Kernels (8-11, 6-9 ESD) were edged by No. 2 Aberdeen Central and beaten by No.