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Almost everything about Sanborn Central/Woonsocket's return appearance to the Class B state basketball tournament will feel familiar. Many of the team's players have been in the state tournament before and they've played countless games at the Huron Arena in conference, district, region and state play. From there, SCW will try to deliver a different finish.
AVON — The Avon Pirates girls basketball team is headed back to the Class B state tournament for a second straight year. But this version of the Pirates is a bit different from a year ago, which finished in fourth place at the state tournament, with an emphasis on defense and strong perimeter play. "We just seem like we can get a lot of offense out of our guards and we're a more perimeter oriented team," Avon coach Brad Poppe said. "These girls, they've been playing together for a lot of years. All year we've stressed defense and it's made a big difference."
In a battle of small school surprises this playoff season, Platte-Geddes was not about to be denied Tuesday night. The Black Panthers never trailed in the Region 6B championship game at the Corn Palace and defeated Gregory 49-35 to return to the state tournament. It will be the third time in the last five years that P-G has made the state tournament.
SIOUX FALLS—There will be not be a third straight Summit League Tournament championship for the South Dakota State University women's basketball team. And for the first time in the nine-year history of the tournament in Sioux Falls, a school other than SDSU or the University of South Dakota will win the championship as Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis knocked off the Jackrabbits 65-61 in overtime in the tournament semifinals Monday at the Premier Center in Sioux Falls.
SIOUX FALLS—Offensive struggles arrived at the worst possible time Friday night for the McCook Central/Montrose girls basketball team. The Fighting Cougars couldn't string together any fourth-quarter field goals and Madison outscored MCM by nine in the final eight minutes to knock off MCM 52-49 in the inaugural Class A Sweet 16 state-qualifying round at Sioux Falls Christian High School. The season ends for the fifth-seeded Fighting Cougars at 18-4, while 12th-seeded Madison (15-8) advances to next week's Class A state tournament in Brookings.
More summer nights of baseball and beer may be in order for Mitchell. The Northwoods League, the wood-bat summer league for collegiate players with dreams of playing in the majors, is in the process of pursuing an affiliate franchise in Mitchell, Northwoods League Chairman Dick Radatz Jr. told The Daily Republic on Friday.
HURON—Mandy Schmidt probably won't shoot a better air ball in her life. With the Kernels down 62-61 with less than a minute left in overtime, Schmidt took a long 3-pointer from the right wing which overshot the hoop but landed in the waiting hands of Chelsea Brewster, who laid the ball in. The shot gave Mitchell a 63-62 lead and the Kernels (4-18) didn't turn back, picking up a 66-62 win in the District 3AA third-place game to advance to a state-qualifying Region 2AA contest on Monday at Rapid City Central.
For the second time this season, Avon and Tripp-Delmont/Armour will meet in girls basketball. And this time, it's for a trip to the state tournament. It's a battle between the old guard in Region 6B in the Pirates, who are the defending champions and in the game for a third straight season against the upstart Nighthawks, who don't have a senior on the roster and are enjoying their best season in years. The game is at 7:30 p.m. today at the Corn Palace.
PIERRE — After four years in Class B for most sports, Platte-Geddes is moving back up in classification once more. The Black Panthers are the lone area school changing athletic classifications in the 2017-18 and 2018-19 school years, moving from Class B to Class A. The South Dakota High School Activities Association Board of Directors approved class and district/region assignments for the next two years on first reading Wednesday in Pierre. The assignments will likely be approved in April at the board's next meeting.
For a second straight year, wrestling fans in the state of South Dakota enjoyed the buffet that is eight mats of prep wrestling all under one roof. And for a second straight year, there was proof that the tournament should never go back to any other format.