After blowing away the Glen Ullin-Hebron Bearcats in the quarterfinals ofthe recent Region 7 girls basketball tournament, they lost in the semi-final game to the top seed Hettnger-Scranton.
The Tigers battled the Bowman County Bulldogs for third place.After leading most of the game, the Tigers went cold and watched the Bulldogs pull out a narrow win.Still, the Tigers were able to pick up a couple of honors for their fourth-place finish in the regional tournament. New England placed two players on the all-tournament team and coach Jacob Jung has a reason to be pleased with theselection.Molly Rayhorn and Shelley Kathrein are both juniors, which gives the coach a solid core for next season.Add to the fact that New England will lose only one player to graduation, the team will be reloading next winter.“I give credit to those two girls for being all-region,” coach Jacob Jung said.
“Molly is such a well-rounded all-around player. She is an all-around good basketball player. Defensively, she has length and she disrupts a lot of what the other teams do on offense,” he said.“She rebounds the ball so well and was basically one of our top rebounders. She is a point guard and handles the ball for us all the time, that is why it is very difficult to take her out of the game, because she is such a good ballhandler.“Right now, she is our best outside shooter. Against Glen Ullin, she had six threes that game. That game showed just how good of an outside shooter she is,” he added. “She is also a student of the game. She worked so hard in the off-season to improve her game. I just look foreven better things from here next year.”Kathrein is the athletic heart to the team, the coach explained.
“She is so athletic… she gets up and down the floor so well. Defensively, she anticipates to well, gets so many steals that she changes things for us defensively. “Offensively, she is a pure scorer. She can basically score from anywhere on the floor. To be honest, I don’t think that she has scratched the surface on how good she can really be. . I am looking for her to improve tremendously off this all-region selection and be a much basketball player next year than she was this year. She is so talented that the sky is the limit for her as to how good she can really be,” the coach said.With two, the program doubled the number of players who made the all-region team over last season, when only Paige Ehlis made the Region 7 list her senior season.Success pays off, he added. “The better your team does, the more kids you are probably going to have on the all-region team. I do give credit to our entire team fro securing that number four seed bye into the regional tournament.
As we improved through the season, other coaches are looking at our team and see some of the other individuals stand out. If the success with the team had not have happen, we wouldn’t have had the success with the individuals,” he said.Sometimes, because it is the region coaches voting for the all-region team, if players have big games on the road or in other towns, they could still help the players make the all-region squad, Jung explained.The program will have a basketball camp coming to New England at the end of May, the coach said. “This is for all age levels, boys and girls. We are going to stress that our kids go to it,” he said. The camp will be stressing fundamentals and developing skills.“The improvement that we made (this season) was because we’d been working on fundamentals and then they gained so much confidence,” Jung added.