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Two Mitchell High School guards have handled their move to South Dakota as well as they handle a basketball. Derek and Tayler Factor have each seen plenty of playing time on the Mitchell High School varsity basketball teams this season. Together, they are embracing a brand new town, school and team. "I was really excited about it," Tayler said. "It's a new team and new people. It's been pretty good. I'm getting to know everyone still. We've gotten closer as a team and a group."
BROOKINGS — Four games into the conference season, Macy Miller is back where she wants to be: atop the Summit League. The Mitchell native leads the conference in scoring with an average of 17.9 points per game. She's done much of the heavy lifting for the Jackrabbits, who currently sit in second place at 4-0, just behind South Dakota (5-0) in the conference standings. SDSU head coach Aaron Johnston said Miller, who tore the anterior cruciate ligament in her right knee on Dec. 9, 2016, is back to playing like she did before the injury.
CORSICA — Off to an impressive 9-1 start, the Corsica-Stickney girls basketball team is starting to turn the corner. Ten games into the season, the Jaguars have already surpassed last year's win total as the team went 8-13 in the 2016-17 season. Taking a step forward has been the goal for the Jaguars and head coach Lorisa Broughton said the team is benefitting from both depth and experience.
Kathleen Juffer finished second in two races for the University of South Dakota women's swimming and diving team in a dual against Omaha on Jan. 12 in Omaha, Nebraska. Juffer, a Wagner native, took second in the 100-yard backstroke and 200 backstroke, finishing behind teammate Sabrina Sabadeanu both times. In the 100 backstroke, Juffer finished with a time of 1 minute, 3 seconds, while recording a time of 2:10.39 in the 200.
BROOKINGS — Jason Christensen has seen Macy Miller take over plenty of basketball games. On Tuesday, the Dakota Wesleyan women's basketball coach saw the former Mitchell Kernel pour in a game-high 23 points, including 10 in a pivotal third quarter, as South Dakota State University fended off an upset bid by DWU 76-63 at Frost Arena in Brookings. The game counted for Division I Jackrabbits, while the Tigers played it as an exhibition contest.
Needing an offensive spark, Jessica Mieras answered the call for the Dakota Wesleyan University women's basketball team. The 6-foot-4 sophomore provided a season-high 20 points off the bench, including 14 in first half, as the No. 8 Tigers dispatched Midland 75-55 in a Great Plains Athletic Conference game Sunday at the Corn Palace. DWU improved to 16-4 and 8-3 in the GPAC to remain tied for third place.
In a defensive slugfest, Avon's Lauren Sees rose to the occasion. Sees helped kickstart the Pirate offense, after Avon was held to just one point in the first quarter. The 5-foot-9 junior finished with a game-high 24 points as Avon knocked off No. 2 De Smet 41-32 at the 35th Annual Girls Hanson Classic on Saturday at the Corn Palace. "I love her confidence. She stepped up and hit some big shots," Avon head coach Brad Poppe said about Sees. "She put us on her back for a bit."
For the past 10 years, every time mid-January rolls around, St. Thomas More girls basketball head coach Brandon Kandolin knows his team will be challenged. The Cavaliers have competed in the Hanson Classic at the Corn Palace since 2008 and Kandolin has come to rely on the annual event for his team to measure itself against a tough opponent.
The ice at the Mitchell Activities Center will soon look a little different. That's because the Mitchell Marlins boys hockey team is hosting its inaugural Pink the Rink night on Jan. 20 at the Mitchell Activities Center. Kourtney Denne, one of the event's coordinators and wife of Mitchell boys varsity head coach Cody Denne, said the Sioux Falls Stampede and Rapid City Rush, as well as other minor league hockey teams, hold similar events and that's where the idea for the Pink the Rink came from.
With his team trailing Yankton by two points at halftime, Mitchell High School girls basketball head coach Wes Morgan challenged his team to play more aggressive. The Kernels responded emphatically. Fueled by a relentless full-court pressure defense, Mitchell bolted out of the break with a furious 15-0 run and coasted from there for a 51-40 Eastern South Dakota Conference victory on Thursday at the Corn Palace. The win snapped a four-game losing skid for the Kernels, who improved to 3-4 and 2-3 in the ESD.