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Huskies defeat Lower Brule, advance to semifinals

ABERDEEN--The defending state champs dispatched the tournament rookies on Thursday. Playing on the same court it won last year's state title, Bridgewater-Emery held off Lower Brule 63-53 in the opening round of the Class B state boys basketball t...

Bridgewater-Emery's Jamin Arend, left, goes behind the back against Lower Brule's Ben Long Crow on Thursday at the Class B state boys basketball tournament at Wachs Arena. (Ryan Deal / Republic)
Bridgewater-Emery's Jamin Arend, left, goes behind the back against Lower Brule's Ben Long Crow on Thursday at the Class B state boys basketball tournament at Wachs Arena. (Ryan Deal / Republic)

ABERDEEN-The defending state champs dispatched the tournament rookies on Thursday.

Playing on the same court it won last year's state title, Bridgewater-Emery held off Lower Brule 63-53 in the opening round of the Class B state boys basketball tournament at Wachs Arena.

The Huskies (21-3) led wire to wire, used a balanced scoring attack and held the Sioux to 14 points below their season average in the team's inaugural trip to the state tournament.

"Defensively, I thought we did a nice job adjusting to their style," Bridgewater-Emery coach Scott Schultz said. "We gave up a few easy ones and a couple layups, but I thought we did pretty well with having a hand up. They made some tough shots. We had a hand up and they hit three or four threes on us, but I was pretty happy with our rebounding effort overall. Defense and rebounding kind of carried us and got us settled in."

Sawyer Schultz tossed in 20 points, Carter Dye netted 17 points and Cole Gassman scored 15 points. Jamin Arend contributed 10 points. Bridgewater-Emery bolted out to a 16-3 lead, led 20-8 after the first quarter and 34-23 at halftime.

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"The start of the game, you have to come out with good momentum because they are not your usual No. 8 seed," Dye said. "They are a good team. We wanted to catch momentum right away."

Dye, a 6-foot-3 junior, helped the Huskies seize the momentum. He scored 15 of his 17 points in the first half. He also grabbed 10 total rebounds for a double-double.

"He kept us in the game the first half," Sawyer Schultz said. "We trust him and when some people are struggling, he is usually the guy that pulls through for us and makes easy buckets, gets good blocks (and) gets good rebounds."

Schultz, meanwhile, closed it out for the Huskies. Bridgewater-Emery built a 16-point lead (39-23) with under seven minutes to go. The Sioux hung around and whittled it to 39-30 with 4:39 left, but Schultz was too much down the stretch. The all-stater scored 12 points in the second half and scored Bridgewater-Emery's final eight points.

"He did his thing," Dye said. "He is always like that. He is clutch and he gets the job done."

Lower Brule's Shane Sazue Jr. scored 15 points and Ben Long Crow added 11 points. The Sioux forced 23 Bridgewater-Emery turnovers.

"Their defense was excellent," coach Schultz said. "They had the quick hands, quick feet, real athletic kids. They caused a lot of trouble for us and I thought we did a little bit better job second half of kind of settling in and getting good shots."

Bridgewater-Emery plays Clark/Willow Lake at 6 p.m. on Friday in the semifinals.

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Bridgewater-Emery 63, Lower Brule 53

Lower Brule (16-8): Tejay Head 0-0 0-0 0, Demas Bromwich 2-9 2-3 6, Nathan Hyde 1-4 0-0 2, Bailey House 0-0 0-0 0, Treyvon Head 0-1 0-0 0, Patrick DrivingHawk Jr 0-0 0-0 0, Ben Long Crow 4-12 2-2 11, Shane Sazue Jr 6-20 1-2 17, Kevin Peterson 3-10 0-0 6, Jayshawn Milton 4-11 1-3 11. Totals 20-67 6-10 53.

Bridgewater-Emery (21-3): Jamin Arend 3-17 2-6 10, Sawyer Schultz 7-12 4-5 20, Cole Gassman 7-8 0-0 15, Carter Dye 5-10 5-6 17, Mason Potter 0-1 0-0 0, Duot VanSickle 0-2 1-2 1, Bradlee Schultz 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 22-51 12-19 63.

LB 8 23 35 53

BE 20 34 46 63

3-pt FG:Lower Brule 7-26 (Head 0-1, Long Crow 1-5, Sazue Jr 4-16, Milton 2-4), Bridgewater-Emery 7-18 (Arend 2-9, Schultz 2-5, Gassman 1-1, Dye 2-3). Rebounds: Lower Brule 40 (Hyde 8), Bridgewater-Emery 44 (Dye 10, VanSickle 10). Fouls Lower Brule 18, Bridgewater-Emery 10. Fouled out: Peterson . Technical: none. Assists: Lower Brule 4 (Long Crow 2), Bridgewater-Emery 11 (Gassman 4). Steals: Lower Brule 16 (Long Crow 4, Sazue Jr 4), Bridgewater-Emery 9 (Gassman 6). Blocked shots: Lower Brule 5 (Hyde 4), Bridgewater-Emery 8 (VanSickle 4). Turnovers: Lower Brule 19, Bridgewater-Emery 23. Attendance: 0.

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