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PAGE 10A: WINTER SPORTS 2017 PRESS & DAKOTAN ? PLAIN TALK The Tripp-Delmont-Armour bench celebrates a big basket during a game in the 2016-17 season. The Nighthawks return their entire squad, including four three-year starters, from a team that went 17-6 last season. Nighthawks Look To Take Next Step: State BY JAMES D. CIMBUREK James.cimburek@yankton.net For the Tripp-DelmontArmour Nighthawks, the past couple of years have been about taking the “next step.” Two years ago, the Nighthawks lost in the district championship. Last season they won the district, but lost in the region final. This season, the goal is clear: earn the co-op’s first-ever state tournament appearance. “Last year our big goal was to win districts, and we were able to achieve that,” said Nighthawks head coach Kristi Allen. “To lose by two against a great Avon team (in regions) means we know we can compete.” The Nighthawks return the bulk of a lineup that went 17-6 a season ago, and will be looking to add program’s first-ever state tournament appearance to their resume. Tripp-Delmont had not been to state since 1999, while Armour last made the trip in 1988. “It’s been a big motivator,” senior Brooklyn Brouwer said of just missing state. “We saw what we needed to work on. We’re working as a team, pushing each other.” TDA boasts four threeyear starters and six seniors that have been key to the program going from 7-11 to 10-8 to last year’s 17-win total. “Having six seniors makes a huge difference,” Allen said. “I’ve had them since they were eighth graders, and have watched them grow up and improve.” Seniors Erica Koster (11 ppg, 9 rpg, 3 spg, 3 apg) and Brouwer (11 ppg, 4 rpg, 3 spg, 2 apg), junior Mattilynn Reiner (18 ppg, 11 rpg, 4 spg, 3 apg) and sophomore Kianna Payer (10 ppg, 2 rpg, 2 spg, 2 apg) have been the core of the Nighthawks fastpaced attack. Reiner earned second-team all-state honors a year ago, with Koster (2nd team) and Brouwer (3rd team) also earning all-Little Missouri Valley Conference recognition. “Some of us have been Centerville sophomore Hayden Ellis is a returning outside threat for the Tornadoes. S.D. Boys FROM PAGE 9A Viborg-Hurley COACH: Galen Schoenefeld ASSISTANT: Stephen Lee VITALS: Class B, Region 5 LAST SEASON: The Cougars (12-10) lost to IreneWakonda in the district final. RETURNING: Quinn Doorn (Sr., 6-3, F, 12.7 ppg, 5.9 rpg, All-Conference), Ryan Doorn (Sr., 6-3, C, 5.5 ppg, 5.5rpg), Jack Lee (Sr., 6-3, G, 8 ppg, 2.5 apg, 2.2 apg), Trace Sikkink (Sr., 6-0, G, 10.9 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 2.5 apg, All-Conference), Connor Paetow (Sr., 6-3, F, 2.7 ppg, 1.9 rpg), Nicholas Sorlien (Sr., 5-11, F), Brodee Sherman (Jr., 6-0, G, 6-6 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 2.1 apg), Chase Gust (Jr., 6-1, F, 3.2 ppg). NEWCOMERS: Shumani Tripp-Delmont-Armour junior Mattilynn Reiner, 34, kicks the ball out to a teammate during Westrom (Sr., 6-3, F), Nick a home game in the 2016-17 season. Reiner is the top returning scorer for a Nighthawks Gaertner (Sr., 6-0, F), Cole team that returns four double-figure scorers — all three-year starters — and six seniors from a squad that went 17-6 and lost in the region final by two points last season. playing together since fifth grade,” Reiner said. “We know where the other will be on the court even before they know sometimes.” Seniors Brianna Stoebner (2 ppg, 3 rpg, 1 spg, 1 apg), Paige Neugebauer (1 rpg), Haley Dufek and Ripley Schafers (1 rpg), juniors Baylee Gerber (1 ppg, 1 rpg) and Alyssa Whitney (1 spg), and freshman Ashlee Gerber (2 ppg, 2 rpg) were also contributors a season ago for a Nighthawks team that did not have a senior in 2016-17. The Nighthawks’ recent success — and their lack of graduation losses from last season — will mean the squad will not be overlooked by opponents. The team was also not overlooked by the media, garnering votes in the South Dakota Media preseason basketball poll. “We’ve got a pretty big tar- get on us this year,” Brouwer said. “We’re going to have to use that as a motivator.” One of the changes for the 2017-18 Class B basketball season is a shot clock, a change Reiner feels benefits the Nighthawks. “We play fast offensively, so it will affect us more on defense,” she said. “I think it will help us control the pace of the game.” The Nighthawks open the season against another program with plenty of returning talent, Menno on Dec. 9, before facing traditional Class A power Parkston on Dec. 18. “It is important for us to get off to a good start, especially for our confidence,” Allen said. “We have three games before Christmas, and Parkston is the second game. Going into Christmas break, we want to have some good wins.” VanBallegooyen (Sr., 6-4, C), Kaden Gerdes (Jr., 6-0, G), Shane Andersen (So., 6-1, F), Justin Ahrms (So.l, 6-1, F), Chase Mason (Fr., 6-2, G), Grant Mikkelsen (Fr., 6-2, F), Eli Boomgarden (Fr., 6-4, F), Gradee Sherman (Fr., 6-2, F), Carter Gust (Fr., 5-11, G), Calvin Rasmussen (Fr., 5-9, G), Angel Johnson (Fr., 5-8, G). Wagner COACH: Josh Davies ASSISTANT: Riley Kirwan VITALS: Class A, Region 5 LAST SEASON: The Red Raiders were 3-18 last season. RETURNING: Alex Sully (Sr., 5-8, F, 12 ppg, 6 rpg, AllConference), Tysin Arpan (Jr., 6-1, F, 4 ppg, 4, rpg), Emilio Cournoyer (Jr., 6-0, G, 3 PPG, 2 RPG), Sagon Ulrich (Jr., 6-0, F). NEWCOMERS: Mato Perry (Sr., 5-9, G), James LaPoint (Sr., 6-3, G), Jaden Peters (Fr., 6-0, F), Malcolm Janis (Fr., 6-1, F). The other major change, though it has gotten more attention, is the new playoff format. Instead of districts, the regions will be seeded out, with the two remaining teams advancing to a state play-in game at a neutral site. Statewide seeding for the state play-in game puts a greater emphasis on the regular season, said Brouwer. “We have to focus each game,” she said. “Each time out, we’re going to have to bring our best.” The Nighthawks will play several high-profile games this season, including the Parkston Classic on Dec. 28, the Hanson Classic on Jan. 13 and the Culvers Classic Feb. 9. The Culvers Classic game is a prime time matchup with Region 6B rival Avon. Follow @JCimburek on Twitter. Andes Central-Dakota Christian’s Chase Pheifer, shooting, was an all-conference selection a season ago. SOUTH DAKOTA GYMNASTICS Cottonwood Villa 1301 1st St. Crofton, NE (402) 388-4339 Parkston-EthanHanson ing COACH: Bridget Muntefer- ASSISTANTS: Jessica Heinrich, Stephanie Plastow, Heather Prunty VITALS: Class A, Region 2 RETURNING: Elizabeth Kinneberg (Fr.), Maelie Culbert (8th), Sadie Lindeman (8th), Jada Plastow (So.), McKenzie Prunty (Jr.), Tyra Zens (So.). NEWCOMERS: Kenna Konfrst (7th), Jaya Kurtenbach (7th). ABOVE: Junior Joanna Soukup returns for the WagnerBon Homme gymnastics team. WagnerBon Homme COACH: Cherie Petry ASSISTANTS: Stephanie TOP RIGHT: Sophomore Tyra Zens returns for the Parkston- Duffek, Craig Flemming Ethan-Hanson gymnastics team. VITALS: Class A, Region 2 RETURNING: Emily Duf- fek (Jr), Joanna Soukup (Jr.), Mahto Raymond (Jr.), Kaitlyn Williams (So.), Faithleigh Podzimek (Fr.), Sawyer Goeden (Jr.), Analy Garcia (Fr.), Tawi StarComes Out (8th), Shai Smejkal (8th), Ivy Hopkins (8th). NEWCOMERS: Maggie Barnett (Jr.), Samantha McBride (So.), Hollee Smejkal (So.), Jenna Duffek (7th), Alcista Dion, Izabella Cournoyer FARMERS & MERCHANTS STATE BANK “We Have A Way With Money” Bloomfield, NE 402-373-4321 www.fandmstatebank.com Member FDIC Branches in Hartington, Crofton, Center, Niobrara & South Yankton CROFTON WARRIORS Boys’ Basketball 12/1................................. at Laurel-Con.-Col. 12/7..................................... vs. Boyd County 12/9.................................at Guardian Angels 12/12..................................at Cedar Catholic 12/15........................................ vs. Creighton 12/21...............................................at O’Neill 12/29..............................................vs. Wynot 1/2................................................... at Ponca 1/4........................................ vs. Battle Creek 1/9..............................................at West Holt 1/13.................................vs. Norfolk Catholic 1/16...............................................vs. Wayne 1/18........................vs. Hartington-Newcastle 1/23...................vs. Lutheran High Northeast 1/25................................................. at Pierce 1/27-2/3 .................Mid-State Conf. (Norfolk) 2/6.............................at McCook Cent.-Mont. 2/9.............................................vs. Randolph 2/16............................... vs. Boone Cent.-NG Girls’ Basketball 11/30 ................................ vs. Cedar Catholic 12/1................................. at Laurel-Con.-Col. 12/5............................... vs. Boone Cent.-NG 12/7..................................... vs. Boyd County 12/9.................................at Guardian Angels 12/15........................................ vs. Creighton 12/16.................................... Sanford Classic (at Sanford Pentagon, SF) 12/21...............................................at O’Neill 12/29..............................................vs. Wynot 1/2................................................... at Ponca 1/4........................................ vs. Battle Creek 1/5................................. vs. South Sioux City (CNOS Classic, Sioux City) 1/11 ..................................... vs. West Central 1/13........................ Hanson Classic, Mitchell 1/16...............................................vs. Wayne 1/18........................vs. Hartington-Newcastle 1/25................................................. at Pierce 1/27-2/3 .................Mid-State Conf. (Norfolk) 2/8.................................... at Norfolk Catholic 2/9.............................................vs. Randolph Wrestling Crofton-Bloom?eld 12/2......................................... Creighton Inv. 12/4...............................................Ponca Inv. 12/5................................BHSA Tri. at Tyndall (Bon Homme-Scotland-Avon, Pierce) 12/9................................Akron-West?eld Inv. 12/14...................................vs. Randolph (C) 12/16......................................... Osmond Inv. 12/30.............................................Pierce Inv. 1/5..................................................at Burwell 1/11 ......................Crofton-Bloom?eld Tri. (B) (Hartington Cedar Catholic, West Holt) 1/13..................................... Battle Creek Inv. 1/19...........................................Madision Inv. 1/20................................ Neligh-Oakdale Inv. 1/27..........................................Plainview Inv. 2/1............................................Vermillion Tri. (Wagner, Vermillion) 2/3.........................................Mid-State Conf. (at Norfolk Catholic HS)
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