Posted 2/12/13 (Tue)
By Neal A. Shipman
The Watford City varsity boys basketball team locked in its No. 1 seeding in the upcoming District 15 Boys Basketball Tournament as the Wolves defeated the Parshall Braves, 64-61, last Tuesday. But the Wolves ended their regular season play with a pair of losses to two of the top teams in Class B basketball, falling to Beulah, the No. 1-ranked team, 62-42, and to Dickinson Trinity, the No. 3-ranked team, 74-25.
This week the Wolves, who ended their regular season play with a 10-7 record, will be competing in the District 15 Tournament, which begins on Feb. 14 at the Northern Lights Building in New Town. As the No. 1 seed going into the tournament, the Wolves will receive a first round bye with their first tournament action coming at 5:30 p.m. on Friday against the winner of the North Shore vs. White Shield game.
Watford City 64, Parshall 61
Watford City survived a fourth quarter rally by Parshall last Tuesday to edge the Braves, 64-61, and lock in the No. 1 seed at the District 15 Tournament.
In a very close game, the Wolves led the Braves 11-9 at the end of the first quarter of play and by nine points 31-22, at halftime.
But the Braves would keep the game close in the third quarter and then nearly pull off a come-from-behind win as Parshall out-scored Watford City, 25-17, in the final eight minutes of play.
“We had a good first half on both sides of the floor,” stated Randy Cranston, Wolves’ head coach. “However Parshall hung in there, and in the fourth quarter, they got hot and put the pressure on defensively and we struggled to run our offense like we did early. It was good to see the players respond to a fourth-quarter run and pull off the win. But I would rather see them pull away.”
Three Watford City players scored in double digits in the win with Tyler Bates pacing the Wolves with 19 points, while Reid Brown and Michael Schulz netted 16 and 12 points, respectively.
Also scoring for the Wolves was Shane Jorgenson and Mitchell Liebel with six points each and Cole Rolfsrud with five points.
Watford City 11 31 47 64
Parshall 9 22 36 61
Beulah 62, Watford City 42
While Watford City was unable to pull off the upset of the season on Thursday against the No. 1-rated team in Class B basketball in North Dakota, the Wolves did gain a lot of confidence.
The Wolves opened the game with a pair of quick baskets to lead the Miners. But in the end, Watford City was no match for the Miners’ tough defense, as the Wolves fell to Beulah 62-42.
Watford City trailed Beulah, 11-6, at the end of the first quarter and by 14, 28-14, at halftime. The Miners continued to pull away in the second half to take the win.
Reid Brown paced the Wolves in scoring with 13 points, while Tyler Bates and Michael Schulz netted 10 points each in the losing effort.
Rounding out the scoring for the Wolves was Cole Rolfsrud with six points and Dustin Kleppen with three points.
Watford City 6 14 31 42
Beulah 11 28 49 62
Dickinson Trinity 74, Watford City 25
After falling to Beulah, the No. 1-ranked team in the state, by 20 points the night before, Randy Cranston was hoping that when the Wolves matched up against Dickinson Trinity, the No. 3-ranked team, on Friday night, he would see a good game. But the Wolves’ head coach saw his team play one of the worst games of his coaching career.
“We plain ran out of gas against Trinity,” stated Cranston on the Wolves’ 74-25 loss. “We did a very good job the night before against Beulah, however, we got off to a very bad start and nothing seemed to work very well the rest of the game.”
The Wolves trailed the Titans, 23-6, after the first quarter and then only scored in the single digits in the remaining three quarters of play.
“We didn’t play very hard and I feel we felt we were beat early and gave up,” stated Cranston. “That’s not what you want to see finishing up the season. But hopefully, we learn and forget about this one.”
Andrew Sampsel came off the bench to pace the Wolves in scoring with five points, while Tyler Bates, Shane Jorgenson, Michael Schulz and Cole Rolfsrud netted four points each.
Also scoring for Watford City was Dustin Kleppen with three points and Reid Brown with one point.
Watford City 6 13 17 25
Dickinson Trin. 23 44 63 74