Yankton holds off Kernel girls in back-and-forth overtime contest at Corn Palace

Mitchell battles but falls to 1-5 on the season

Mitchell's Sawyer Stoebner drives to the basket as Yankton's Ellie Karolevitz defends during a game on Friday, Jan. 7, 2022 at the Corn Palace. Matt Gade / Mitchell Republic
Matt Gade

MITCHELL -- In a game with a litany of chances and many swings in momentum, the Mitchell High School girls basketball team came up a few points short in an overtime clash with Yankton on Friday night.

The Gazelles’ Claire Tereshinski had a key 3-pointer with 55 seconds left in the extra session to give Yankton the lead for good, as the Kernels fell 56-53 in an Eastern South Dakota Conference showdown at the Corn Palace.

“I’m proud of how hard we played,” Mitchell coach Cole Knippling said. “There were a lot of great plays from both teams and it just comes down to a few possessions there. We could have made a few more shots and a few more plays but that’s basketball. You can’t fault the effort.”

Mitchell's Taylor Giblin brings the ball up the court as Yankton's Ellie Karolevitz (5) gives chase and Yankton's Molly Savey looks on during a game on Friday, Jan. 7, 2022 at the Corn Palace. Matt Gade / Mitchell Republic
Matt Gade


Mitchell forced overtime with a great play from sophomore standout Sawyer Stoebner teaming up with Taylor Giblin to end regulation. With 7.4 seconds left, Stoebner drove the length of the court and split a Yankton double team before kicking it to Giblin at the top of the arc, who swished home the 3-pointer just before time expired and sent the game to overtime at 49-all.

“It was just a great play,” Knippling said. “Great awareness by Sawyer to make that play and Yankton’s defense collapsed around her and Taylor made a big shot. Taylor and Sarah Sebert really did that for us all night.”

Mitchell trailed 33-27 with 2 minutes and 57 seconds left in the third quarter when the Kernels found another gear, scoring the next 14 points. Eighth-grader Addie Siemsen and Giblin each had five points in the run, including Giblin’s 3-pointer out of the quarter break to put Mitchell up 36-33. The lead would get to 41-33 with 5:22 left in regulation, but Yankton quickly closed, with Tereshinski eventually tying the game on a 3-pointer with 2:11 left and then giving her team the lead with 1:01 remaining in the fourth quarter, only to see Giblin’s last-second heroics force an extra period.

Mitchell finished the game 17-for-50 on field goals (34%) and 8-for-22 from 3-point territory, with Sebert and Giblin each hitting three 3-pointers. Stoebner finished with 15 points, with 12 from Sebert and 11 from Taylor Giblin. Lauren Van Overschelde had eight points and Addie Siemsen had five points.

Mitchell scored the first three points of overtime behind Stoebner but found points hard to come by for the remainder of the game. Tereshinski’s 3-pointer put Yankton ahead 54-52 late and Sarah Sebert had a split a pair of free throws to get within one point with 42 seconds left but the Kernels could not get closer.

Tereshinski and teammate Ellie Karolevitz -- who had 15 points in the first half -- made up the Gazelles’ dynamic duo for the night. Tereshinski finished with 16 points and Karolevitz had 23 points, including a last-second free throw that stretched the margin to three points. Stoebner got a final look at a half-court 3-pointer but the shot came up short, dropping Mitchell to 1-5 overall and 0-4 in conference play.

GALLERY: Kernel girls basketball against Yankton at the Corn Palace


The Kernels led 14-11 after the first quarter, powered by four 3-pointers, including one from Sarah Sebert to end the quarter but Yankton held a 23-19 advantage at halftime. Dealing with foul trouble, Mitchell turned to some key younger players in the second half who were able to help engineer the run to get the Kernels back in the game.

“We saw a lot of good stuff, especially from our younger players, our freshmen and eighth graders,” Knippling said, speaking about Van Overschelde, Siemsen and Delaney Degen, who all had key minutes. “Every time they’re out there, they build more and more confidence and it’s just fun to watch.”

The Gazelles, who host Harrisburg on Jan. 11, could have sealed the game sooner but struggled madly in the second half at the free-throw stripe. Yankton (2-3, 2-1 ESD) was 1-for-7 in the final minute of regulation and was 6-for-15 in the second half and overtime Friday.

Mitchell is back in action on Tuesday for another girls-boys doubleheader against Huron.

Traxler is the assistant editor and sports editor for the Mitchell Republic. He's worked for the newspaper since 2014 and has covered a wide variety of topics. He can be reached at
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