Harding County came to play. Taking the floor on their home court, New England had their hands full in the first half against the Ranchers.
By Cole Benz | Herald Editor | email@example.com
Harding County came to play. Taking the floor on their home court, New England had their hands full in the first half against the Ranchers. The Tigers came away with the 52-45 victory over the neighbors to the south.
The Tigers played with a few of their starters under the weather. As a result Mason Stang and Cody Holt started in place of Christian Kilwein and Ty Nordby, though Kilwein and Nordby did log some minutes in the game.
The Ranchers exploded with a scoring show in the first quarter. Putting up 18 points, Harding County held the Tigers to 13. The second quarter was much more evenly paced, as both teams’ defenses stepped up. Both teams scored six points, allowing the Ranchers to head into the halftime break with a five point lead. The score was 24-19 in favor of Harding County.
The third quarter was all New England as they outscored the Ranchers 12-6. The break must have helped as they not only put on a scoring show but held Harding County to another single-digit scoring quarter. The Tigers ended the third ahead of the Ranchers by one point with a score of 31-30.
It was a flow of scoring in the fourth quarter for both teams. With the defense seemingly taking a step back for both teams, each squad combined for 36 points in the quarter. Ultimately, New England won the battle as they accumulated 21 of those 36 points to come out on top 52-45.
Leading the scoring category for Harding County was Clayton Kock who had 13, followed by Harley Mollman with 12. The Ranchers beat New England at the free-throw line, shooting to a 68 percentage over New England’s 46 percent. Mollman also lead Harding County in rebounds with eight on the evening.
Top scorer for the Tigers was Daniel Prince who had 19 points. Brady Bender scored 14 and John Urlacher put up 10 as those would be the three Tigers to reach double digit points. Bender and Urlacher each made one 3-point basket, the only two on the night for both teams.
New England out rebounded Harding county 37-34, with Prince, Ty Nordby and Cody Holt each grabbing eight.
New England finishes the season out with two regional games. On Saturday, Feb. 21 they face off against Bowman County at Bowman. Their final regional game and regular season game will be on Friday, Feb. 27 at home against Glen Ullin-Hebron.
If the Tigers can come away with victories in those two games they will finish the season with an undefeated regional record and a top seed in the regional tournament.