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Late comeback attempt falls short for Herreid-Selby Area in loss to Highmore/Harrold Pirates

Posted 2/04/13 (Mon)

By Jeff Kosters
The Herreid/Selby Area Wolverines traveled to Highmore last Friday evening to face their second straight unfamiliar opponent in the Highmore/Harrold Pirates. The Wolverines were coming off a convincing win over Summit, while the Pirates brought in a 2-11 record; averaging just 38 points per game in their losses and giving up 66. On paper it appeared to be a pretty good matchup for Herreid/Selby Area, but as they would find out; it would be anything but.
The contest started off the way most would have expected; as Nick Larson hit the game’s first bucket about one minute in, Brady Vander Vorst hit a three after that and Dakota Thorstenson’s first bucket at the 5:23 mark would give Herreid/Selby Area an early 7-0 lead. Highmore/Harrold would answer on a three from Hadley Hamlin and back-to-back buckets from Hayden Houdek and Jordan Houdek to tie it up at 7 apiece. Cooper Schaefbauer would hit a bucket with just over three minutes to play; but another bucket from Jordan Houdek, two more from Hadley Hamlin and Brady LaMont’s first bucket of the game – a three pointer – would make it 16-9; giving the Pirates a 16-2 run over the previous four plus minutes. Zach Geller would answer with a three pointer at the 41 second mark and follow it up with a bucket at the 21 second mark and Schaefbauer would hit one at the end of the quarter to finish the quarter on a 7-0 run to tie it up at 16-16 after one.
Highmore/Harrold would score the first points of the second quarter on a LaMont free throw and Jordan Houdek would hit a bucket to give the Pirates a 19-16 lead. Thorstenson would score the game’s next two buckets to give the Wolverines the lead again at 20-19. A few moments later, Thorstenson would receive a technical foul for hanging on the rim after a missed dunk attempt. Colin Weidenbach would hit the free throw and Hadley Hamlin would hit a three pointer to give the Pirates the lead back at 23-20 with six minutes to play in the half. Kennedy Kosters’ first bucket would pull them to within one, but back-to-back scores from Hayden Houdek and Jordan Houdek and another Weidenbach free throw would make it 28-22. Larson and Kosters would hit buckets and a Schaefbauer free throw with three minutes left in the half would cut the lead to one at 28-27. Weidenbach would miss the front end of a one and one and Hamlin would hit one of two free throws to make it 29-27 at the two minute mark. Larson would hit a three pointer to put the wolverines back on top 30-29, but a Hamlin free throw would tie it up before Geller would hit the last bucket of the half in the closing seconds to give the Wolverines a 32-30 lead at the break.
Jordan Houdek would get the scoring started in the third quarter to tie it up, but Thorstenson would answer right back to keep the lead at two for Herreid/Selby Area. Jordan Houdek would hit consecutive buckets to give the Pirates the lead back at 36-34, but two Vander Vorst free throws would tie it right back up. Larson would hit a three pointer just shy of the four minute mark to give the Wolverines a slim 41-40 advantage; but back-to-back buckets from LaMont – one of those being a three – would put the Pirates back up 45-41. Larson and Hamlin would exchange two free throws and a bucket each before Larson’s sixth straight point would make it 49-47 with two minutes left in the third. LaMont’s third three pointer of the contest would make it a five point advantage before a Thorstenson bucket with a minute left would make it 52-49. Hamlin and Jordan Houdek would both hit buckets in the final minute to give Highmore/Harrold their largest lead of the game to that point 56-49.
As was the case in the second and third quarters, Highmore/Harrold would score first in the final quarter on a Jordan Houdek bucket to push the lead to nine. After exchanging buckets, Larson would hit his third three of the game to cut it to six at 60-54. Hayden Houdek would answer by converting the conventional three point play to make it nine again; and following a technical foul on the Wolverines’ bench, Hamlin would hit both free throws to push the lead to double digits at 65-54. LaMont and Schaefbauer would exchange a free throw to keep it at eleven before a Geller three would make it 66-58 with just less than four and a half to play in the game. Hamlin would hit a three pointer at the three minute mark to make it 70-58. After the Wolverines would cut it to eight, Jordan Houdek would hit two free throws and another bucket to push the lead to a dozen again at 76-64 with less than two minutes to play. To say things got interesting at that point would be an understatement. Larson would hit a three at the 1:28 mark to make it 76-67, but Jordan Houdek would answer by hitting two free throws to keep the lead at eleven. Larson would hit another three 15 seconds after his previous one and the lead would be 78-70 with 1:15 left. Highmore/Harrold would turn it over and Geller would be fouled while shooting a three, and he would convert two of the three to cut it to 78-72 with 49 seconds left. Hamlin would hit one of two free throws and following a Wolverines miss and foul, Hayden Houdek would hit one of two free throws to push the lead back to eight. Geller’s third three pointer of the game at the 22 second mark would make it 80-75. Hamlin would convert one of his two free throw attempts with 16 seconds left, but another Larson three at the ten second mark would make it 81-78. Weidenbach would make one of his two free throws to make it a two possession game at 82-78 with nine seconds left; but Larson’s seventh three pointer of the game – fifth in the fourth quarter – would make it 82-81 with three seconds left to play. Highmore/Harrold almost did the unthinkable, throwing the ensuing inbounds pass to the other end of the floor; nearly throwing it too far. Had that happened, the Wolverines would have had the ball back on their own end under their own basket with a chance to win the game. The inbounds pass was run down and a foul was committed with a second and change left. Cole Oakley would hit his first free throw to make it 83-81 and following a miss on his second, the Wolverines long desperation shot would come up short and the Pirates would escape with the 83-81 win.
Free throws were once again a factor, as Highmore/Harrold converted 23 of their 38 free throws to Herreid/Selby Area’s twelve of 16; Highmore/Harrold attempted eleven from the stripe to Herreid/Selby Area’s two in the first half, and the Pirates attempted 25 free throws in the fourth quarter, converting 16 of them; just enough to sneak away with the win. The Pirates tried to give the game away late though, as with a twelve point lead with 90 seconds left; they took ill-advised shots, had a few turnovers, and nearly missed enough free throws to lose it. The Wolverines hit five three pointers in the final 90 seconds, and that obviously had a little something to do with the comeback as well.
The Wolverines were led by Larson’s game high 39 points, 21 of which came in the fourth quarter. He also had six rebounds, seven assists and three steals; while Geller added 15 points; Thorstenson ten points, ten rebounds, four blocks and two steals and Kosters added two steals as well.
Highmore/Harrold had four players in double figures; led by Hadley Hamlin with 25 points, Jordan Houdek with 24 points and LaMont and Hayden Houdek each adding a dozen. The Pirates move to 3-11 with the win, while the Wolverines fell back to .500 at 7-7.


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