Aberdeen halts Kernel girls in playoff opener
Aberdeen Central handed Mitchell a case of the Mondays. The Golden Eagles held the visiting Kernels to just three first-half field goals and 26 total points en route to a 48-26 victory Monday night in the girls District 3AA tournament opener at G...
Aberdeen Central handed Mitchell a case of the Mondays.
The Golden Eagles held the visiting Kernels to just three first-half field goals and 26 total points en route to a 48-26 victory Monday night in the girls District 3AA tournament opener at Golden Eagles Arena.
"They played exactly like we thought they were going to play," said Central coach Dawn Seiler of Mitchell's strategy. "They were going to go deep into the shot clock. Our zone allows them to do that. We challenged the kids to get out to a lead early and really put the pressure on them."
The top-seeded Golden Eagles did exactly that, limiting the Kernels to a 1-for-8 shooting performance in the opening 8 minutes. That lone field goal came with 24 seconds remaining in the quarter.
Aberdeen Central, meanwhile, used junior Paiton Burckhard as its launching pad in the first quarter. Burckhard, who was honored prior to the game for reaching the 1,000 career-point plateau in Central's last home game of the regular season, scored nine of the Golden Eagles' 11 points in the quarter, hitting all four of Central's field goals in the stanza.
"I give my kids credit. We're playing hard on the defensive end," said Mitchell coach Wes Morgan. "Holding Aberdeen to 48 is not a bad number, but you've got to score. Paiton is just an awesome scorer. She does a lot of good things, and a lot of good things right."
With the lead firmly in hand early in the game, Central continued to build throughout the night, out-scoring the Kernels in every quarter.
"We really feel like we're playing our best basketball of the season right now," Seiler said. "I feel like they have a lot of confidence right now. They know their roles, they're willing to play their roles. That's the way we have to be right now. The kids came out confident."
Burckhard finished the night with 21 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, a pair of blocks and two steals for the Golden Eagles. Melia Mounga added eight points and eight rebounds, while Haylee Mork and Adrianna Hase had five points apiece. Laura Babcock dished out six assists.
Mitchell was led by Jordyn Cranny, who came off the bench to hit four 3-pointers and finished with 12 points. No other Mitchell player had more than one made field goal. Chelsea Brewster had four points, while Jenna Weich had three points and five boards for the Kernels.
"We've just got to learn to be a little bit tougher, and learn to make free throws and learn to make layups and figure out a way to score," Morgan said. "Get ourselves in situations to score."
Central will now turn its focus to Pierre, which was a 69-51 winner over Huron in the other District 3AA game Monday. The Golden Eagles will host Pierre at 7 p.m. on Thursday for the district championship. The winner will earn an automatic berth in the state tournament.
Mitchell will face Huron on Thursday in an elimination game. The game is a 6 p.m. start at the Huron Arena.
Aberdeen Central 48, Mitchell 26
MITCHELL (3-18): Tess Limberg 1 0-0 2, Kendra Brewster 1 0-0 2, Mackenzie Miller 0 2-4 2, Jenna Weich 1 1-4 3, Jordyn Cranny 3 0-0 12, Chelsea Brewster 1 2-5 4, Carly Haring 0 1-2 1. Totals 8-35 6-15 26.
ABERDEEN CENTRAL (16-5): Laura Babcock 1 0-0 3, Emma Yeske 1 1-2 3, Haylee Mork 2 0-0 5, Paiton Burckhard 9 3-3 21, Melia Mounga 2 4-8 8, Adrianna Hase 1 2-2 5, Cassidy Gough 1 1-1 3. Totals 17-40 11-16 48.
M 4 11 19 26
AC 11 26 38 48
3-point field goals - Cranny 4, Babcock, Mork, Hase. Total fouls - Mitchell 14; Aberdeen Central 12. Fouled out - Miller. Rebounds - Mitchell 19 (Weich 5); Aberdeen Central 39 (Burckhard 10). Assists - Mitchell 8 (Mandy Schmidt 3); Aberdeen Central 11 (Babcock 6). Turnovers - Mitchell 10; Aberdeen Central 12. Steals - Mitchell 4; Aberdeen Central 5 (Burckhard 2).