Brooke Cersosimo is The Daily Republic's sports editor.
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HURON -- Behind a strong game from its goalie, the Mitchell Marlins girls' varsity hockey team pulled an upset Friday at the state varsity tournament in Huron at Bergman Arena. The sixth-seeded Marlins got a shutout from goalie Hannah Spates and beat third-seeded Oahe 1-0 in the quarterfinals of the tournament, guaranteeing themselves a top-four finish in the tournament. Marlins forward/ defenseman Kylie Barington scored the Marlins' only goal, coming with 9 minutes, 14 seconds to go in the third period on an assist from forward Haley Stahl.
The fourth-seeded Aberdeen Golden Eagles made a strong defensive showing to defeat third-seeded Mitchell to win the District 3AA elimination game 59-37 Friday night at the Corn Palace in Mitchell. The Kernels end their season with a 5-17 record, ending a 10-year streak of Class AA state high school boys' basketball tournament appearances. "They may go down as one of the worst teams in Kernel history, but I didn't have any eligibility issues, training violations, technical (fouls) or problems with them on the floor this season," Mitchell coach Tom Young said.
WAGNER -- Parkston had one last chance to take the lead after West Central's Madison Kuehl traveled on an inbound pass with 8 seconds left in the game. After a Parkston timeout, senior Krista Radke pulled up for a jumper that was blocked by West Central, securing its 44-43 victory over Parkston in the Region 5A girls' basketball championship game in front of a Parkston-heavy crowd.
After finishing runner-up for the past two seasons, the Mitchell Marlin girls' varsity hockey team is looking to break the trend. "These girls know what it's all about and I'm hoping their experience will pay big dividends for us," head coach Randy Rezac said. "It's a very tight league where anyone can win, but we're going to go for the dance." The Marlins are seeded sixth in the state girls' varsity hockey tournament and will play third-seeded Oahe (11-9-1) in the first round at 3 p.m.
Mitchell Technical Institute's satellite communications program has granted students a new opportunity this school year. For the first time since the program began in 1989, its students have provided Midco Sports Network broadcast support for the region's sporting events. The school has provided broadcast support for news events for the network in past years but has not done so with sports until now. "We are working as a subcontractor for the network," said Julie Brookbank, director of marketing and public information at MTI.
A common goal for sports teams is to peak at the end of the season. As the state tournament approaches, Mitchell High School basketball coach Wes Morgan says his team is doing just that. "I think it's really important to play at a high level as we go," he said. "If we continue to improve as we go into the tournament and peak at the right time, we'll make it tough for other teams to beat us." The Kernels' improvements will be tested tonight when second-seeded Mitchell travels to play top-seeded Aberdeen Central for the District 3AA championship at 7 p.m.
HURON -- With youth comes nerves. Mitchell High School boys' basketball coach Tom Young pointed to his team's postseason inexperience after a first-round District 3AA playoff loss to Huron Tuesday. Many of Mitchell's players were playing in their first district game. "The kids were pretty tight," Young said.
HURON -- The last time the Mitchell High School boys' basketball team missed the state tournament was 11 years ago. And with a 63-53 loss against second-seeded Huron Tuesday in the first round of the District 3AA tournament, the third-seeded Kernels are one step closer to ending the 10-year state tournament appearance streak. Mitchell's 2002 team failed to qualify to the state tournament, despite having a winning record at 12-9 on the season.
PARKSTON -- After a record-breaking weekend, the Parkston wrestling team was well received during its homecoming. "This community supports its sports very well and wrestling has a huge backing also," said Parkston coach Jared Digmann, whose team won the Class B state wrestling title and set a state record for all-time scoring with 164 team points.
Wayne Stone remembers his days in a Kernel uniform vividly, but is surprised others do. The 1941 Mitchell High School graduate will be inducted into the South Dakota High School Basketball Hall of Fame during a banquet, along with 15 others, March 23 in Madison. "It's a great honor, especially when your name is associated with great, great ballplayers from all over South Dakota," Stone said. He will be inducted alongside Mitchell native and Miami Heat veteran Mike Miller.