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PARKSTON — It took one half, but once the Sully Buttes Chargers got going, they were tough to slow down. Powered by the one-two punch of Lauren Wittler and Rachel Guthmiller, who combined to score 44 points, top-ranked Sully Buttes shrugged off a slow start and cruised past Tripp-Delmont/Armour 57-44 at the Parkston Girls Classic on Thursday in Parkston.
In case you haven't noticed, the sports staff here at The Daily Republic goes crazy for all athletic events — big or small. And 2017 was chock full of sports action for all three of us, both on and off the clock. My colleague Ryan Deal, as many already know, utilized some vacation time to catch a Duke men's college basketball game at Cameron Indoor in November. Back in June, our sports editor, Marcus Traxler, enjoyed a week away from daily deadlines with four days of watching the world's top golfers at the U.S. Open at Erin Hills in Wisconsin.
EMERY — This year's Mike Miller Classic will be awfully similar to a state tournament for Bridgewater-Emery. And the top-ranked Huskies (2-0), the defending Class B state champions, are looking forward to the challenge of playing three games in three days. "It'll be a tough test for us with three really good teams," Bridgewater-Emery head coach Scott Schultz said. "The biggest key for us is to use our depth. We'll need some guys to step up and give us some quality minutes."
WAGNER — It's all about the team, for Wagner wrestlers. That's the message head coach Robert Kokesh is preaching to the group of 23 grapplers. Nearly eight years after helping the Red Raiders cap off a Class B three-peat by winning his third state title, Kokesh is back in the Wagner wrestling room, hoping to reestablish the program as a Class B powerhouse. The first step, according the former University of Nebraska standout, starts with teammates pushing each other.
Steady defensive pressure gave the Mitchell High School girls basketball team a halftime lead Tuesday night. That was until Brookings brought some pressure of its own. The Bobcats (3-1, 3-1 ESD) put full-court pressure on Mitchell in the second half and held the Kernels to three points in the third quarter and 11 points in the half to rally for a 43-34 Eastern South Dakota Conference win at the Corn Palace.
Balanced scoring and stiff man-to-man defense was once again a winning formula for the Dakota Wesleyan University women's basketball team at the Corn Palace. More efficient than flashy, the No. 9-ranked Tigers bounced back from their second loss of the season with a 80-50 dismantling of Briar Cliff in a Great Plains Athletic Conference battle on Saturday.
Points came at a premium for the Mitchell High School girls basketball team on Saturday. Rapid City Stevens kept defensive pressure on the Kernels all game, using a 2-1-2 trapping zone defense to stifle Mitchell's offense. Playing without Chelsea Brewster and Jordyn Cranny, Mitchell dropped its first game of the season 62-34 at the Corn Palace. "They were physical and long with their press. We just didn't react very well," said MHS head coach Morgan, who added Brewster was out of town and Cranny missed the game due to illness.
For the second time in two games this season, the Mitchell High School girls basketball team used the second half to its advantage. Leading Rapid City Central 25-23 at halftime, the Kernels put together a 9-0 run to start the third quarter and never looked back, earning a 50-40 victory on Friday at the Corn Palace. Mitchell improved to 2-0 and will take on No. 3-ranked Rapid City Stevens at 1:30 p.m. today at the Corn Palace.
In an Eastern South Dakota Conference dual, the Mitchell High School wrestling team was able to take last year's Class A runner-up down to the wire.
ORANGE CITY, Iowa — Darbi Gustafson only continues to improve for Northwestern College women's basketball team. With more than 70 college games now in her ledger, the former Ethan standout has taken her game up another notch this year. Twelve games into her junior season, the 6-foot-1 center is averaging 17.3 points (29th in the nation) and 8.42 rebounds (32nd in the nation) per game. She's shooting 57 percent from the field (12th in the nation) and has helped the No. 18-ranked Red Raiders start 8-4 and 5-1 in the Great Plains Athletic Conference.