Observations from First Weekend of South Dakota Class AA Basketball
The first weekend of high school basketball for Class AA has concluded. Here are some news and notes from all the action.
Class AA Boys Notes
Washington Boys Start Fast, but Sam Siganos Suffers Injury:
Two games in the books for the Warriors, and they are 2-0. They opened the season with a win over Rapid City Stevens 62-53, and followed that up with a 58-42 win over Class A St. Thomas More. The Warriors were led by Sam Siganos, who posted 34 points between both games.
It isn't all good news for Siganos. In the game against St. Thomas More, Siganos took a hard shot to the jaw. He would leave, but returned in the second half to finish the game. The team has confirmed with me that Siganos suffered a broken jaw that requires surgery. He is expected to be out for a minimum of six weeks.
Lincoln Boys Very Athletic; Rapid City Stevens Still Good:
The first six quarters for Rapid City Stevens made it appear that the squad would make a long bus trip back to Rapid with an 0-2 record. After losing by nine to Washington on Friday night, the Raiders were trailing Lincoln by 20 at halftime on Saturday. Mason Archambault accounted for 14 of the 16 points scored in the first half, and the other two points were picked up on free throws from Jacob Martin. The Raiders outscored the Patriots 38-17 in the second half to get a 54-53 win. The team was very impressive in the second half, and never looked defeated after being down by 20. Rapid City Stevens could be a team to watch for this season.
Lincoln only returns five this season, and two of the five really saw significant varsity minutes heading into this year. The team is very athletic with the likes of Lee Ransom, Cason Coulter, and Evan Hieber. In the second quarter of Saturday's game, Coulter and Hieber executed a spectacular ally-oop that had the Lincoln gym shaking. It might take some time for Lincoln to develop in terms of stopping teams from going on long runs, but don't be surprised if the Patriots dominate the boards during the season against teams.
O'Gorman/Roosevelt Open the Season This Week
O'Gorman and Roosevelt both had the weekend off, but they will open the season this week. The Knights will play three games this week. O'Gorman faces Brandon Valley on Tuesday, Watertown on Thursday, and Lincoln on Friday.
The Rough Riders will have a pair of games this week, and both will be live on ESPN 99.1. On Tuesday night, Roosevelt will face the 2-0 Washington Warriors. After facing a city rival on Tuesday, the Rough Riders will play Marshall, Minnesota at home on Thursday night.
Class AA Girls Notes
O'Gorman and Roosevelt Struggle in First Game of the Year:
The Rough Riders and the Knights opened the season against each other on Friday night, and it wasn't pretty to say the least. The two teams were tied at seven after the first quarter, and O'Gorman went into the half with a 16-14 lead. O'Gorman held Roosevelt to just nine points in the second half to win 36-23.
It felt like the hoop was covered for a majority of the night as both teams struggled to make shots. Both teams also turned the ball over numerous times. Overall, the game felt like a learning process for both teams.
Roosevelt has just one senior in Jamie Spicer to lead the way. The Rough Riders also lack when it comes to height. Peyton Stolle is the teams tallest player at 5'10, and they struggled to play against the height of Katie Messler (6'1) and Sabastian Akoi (6'3) of O'Gorman. It will take some time, but Roosevelt can be dangerous from the outside with Spicer, Stolle, and Tahia Mitzel. Those three played significant varsity time last year.
O'Gorman has a strong core back this season with Messler, Akoi, Emily Kolbeck, Rachel Townsend, and Ashlee Beacom. Shots just weren't falling for O'Gorman against Roosevelt. It felt like the group was still learning how to gel fully together in the first half. They found their stride at the end of the third, and in the fourth quarter.
Washington Girls Continue to Dominate
The defending champions of Class AA have almost everyone back this year, and that has shown in the first two games. Washington made quick work of Rapid City Stevens on Friday night winning 67-32. Saturday night the team was tested against the defending Class A Champion St. Thomas More. The Warriors pulled away in the 4th quarter for a 59-53 win. Anna Goodhope and Sydney Arrington both had 20 points in the win.
Lincoln Patriots Get Another Great Performance from Anna Brecht:
Lincoln, like Washington, returns a good part of their roster from last season and that helped them secure a 61-51 win against Rapid City Stevens on Saturday. Anna Brecht led the way with 30 points, while Izzy VanVeldhuizen added another 20. Sydney Rosinsky is also back for Lincoln this season, and Brooke Luitjens transferred from Roosevelt. Luitjens struggled to find her shot in her first outing as a Patriot, but once she does this team could be very dangerous.