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Cubs' boys basketball prepares for Class A run

CHAMBERLAIN--Last season, Chamberlain beefed up its schedule and it helped in an upset win over Sioux Valley in the first round of the Class A boys' basketball tournament.

Chamberlain's Tiegen Priebe, right, dribbles the ball during last year's Class A semifinal game against Sioux Falls Christian in Rapid City. (Eric Mayer/Republic)
Chamberlain's Tiegen Priebe, right, dribbles the ball during last year's Class A semifinal game against Sioux Falls Christian in Rapid City. (Eric Mayer/Republic)

CHAMBERLAIN-Last season, Chamberlain beefed up its schedule and it helped in an upset win over Sioux Valley in the first round of the Class A boys' basketball tournament.

The Cubs are hoping to reap the benefits of another tough schedule this season.

No. 4-ranked Chamberlain is playing the second season of two-year agreements with Class A powers Dell Rapids, Madison and Aberdeen Roncalli. The Cubs are also playing defending state champs Sioux Falls Christian in the first year of a two-year deal. Chamberlain is also hosting Lennox at its East-West Classic on Dec. 28 and it will play at the Corn Palace in the Dakota Wesleyan University Classic on Feb. 11.

Chamberlain coach Adam Nelson said playing the traditional powers during the regular season should benefit his squad come postseason time and hopefully at the state tourney.

"We are trying to get a schedule that is going to make us competitive statewide," Nelson said. "We think going out and getting Sioux Falls Christian and Dell Rapids and getting Madison, Roncalli on our schedule will get us prepared, especially now with the Sweet 16 and also the first round, second round of the state tournament."

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After they defeated Sioux Valley in the first round, the Cubs lost to Sioux Falls Christian and Dakota Valley in the next two rounds, finishing in fourth place.

The senior-laden Cubs have their sights set on more this season.

"Our goals are to get there and win the first round of the state tournament and put ourselves in position to be playing on a Saturday night and for us to do that, we need to compete against the best teams in the state," Nelson said.

The slate of games should benefit Chamberlain both on and off the court. Off the court, the schedule could help the Cubs during the new Sweet 16 format. The eight regions in Class A will play down to the final two teams and then reseed 1-through-16 and play region qualifying games at neutral sites.

Chamberlain's schedule could give it a higher seed if makes the Sweet 16, but Nelson said the purpose of the schedule is more to prepare the team on the court.

The Cubs will play in tough road environments, as just seven of the team's 20 games this season are at home. They will play Madison, Sioux Falls Christian and Dell Rapids away from home, along with road contests at Parkston, Winner, Todd County, Miller, Mobridge-Pollock, Wagner and McLaughlin.

"We have to learn how to play night in and night out a certain way, so we can compete and beat the best teams," Nelson said. "Because that is who we want to be. We want to be one of the better programs in the state."

The Cubs, currently 2-0, return one of the better players in the state in two-time all-state guard Seth Friesz, who will play at NCAA Division III Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota.

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"He understands the game and he can shoot the ball," Nelson said. "He gets a lot of looks and he is able to get open in our offense."

Chamberlain also has a nice blend of guards and post players in seniors Tiegen Priebe, Rich Marone, Dodge Knippling and juniors Riggs Priebe and Carson Powers.

"We have got some quick guards and that is tough for teams to guard when we can put three point guards out there along with a post player that can be a weapon out there," Nelson said.

Related Topics: CHAMBERLAIN
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