Williston – The Stanley Blue Jays raced to 16-2 lead over the Kenmare Honkers and it looked like their road to the Region 8 title game would be an easy one.
Stanley would ultimately win 68-58, but Jacob Rodin and company would make the road a treacherous one in the final three quarters.
The Honkers mounted a serious comeback in the second quarter to cut the lead down to five points. The Blue Jays would regroup out of a timeout to extend the lead back to eleven at halftime.
Neither team could gain much ground in the third quarter until the final horn, when senior Mikey Gunderson hit a deep high-arching three-pointer at the buzzer to send the Blue Jays into the fourth quarter up 53-39.
The Blue Jays would use the spark they received from Gunderson to push their lead to 19 points early in the fourth quarter. “I love watching our kids play when they play with urgency and desperation,” said Stanley coach Kory Anderson. “Mickey’s Energy can be a big lift for us and again someone outside the “big three” stepped up big.”
Just as the Blue Jays were ready to start celebrating, Rodin scored 7 points in 45 seconds to cut the lead down to 12. Fortunately for the Blue Jays that would be the last run of the game for the Honkers.
The Honkers were a perfect 10/10 from the free-throw line.
Jacob Rodin poured in 25 points to pace the Honkers, bringing his tournament point total to a whopping 74.
Wyatt Hanson was excellent on both ends for the Blue Jays, he finished with 25 points as well.
Matt Patten also had 20 point, he was a perfect 4-4 from the line.
Stanley will face New Town in the Region 8 Championship game, that game is projected to tip-off at 2:30 pm today (Saturday). “New Town is tenacious and hungry,” said Anderson. “We gave up 20 offensive boards last time we played them and will absolutely have to fix that if we want to win.”
Stanley 16 17 20 15 (68)
Kenmare 2 20 17 19 (58)
Stanley: W. Hanson 25, Patten 20, R. Hanson 12, Gunderson 7, Lee 2, K. Hanson 2
Kenmare: J. Rodin 25, Balvitsch 10, Houck 10, Lautensclager 8, Chrest 3, Stroklung 2
*Please contact our Editor in chief – Ian Grande with any questions or concerns. Email: StanleyGazette@gmail.com
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- See also: North Dakota Boys Basketball Region Championship Scoreboard (All Regions)