Keeping their playoff hopes alive
By Neal A. Shipman
The Watford City varsity boys basketball team kept their playoff hopes alive as the Wolves emerged as the fourth place seed coming out of the District 15 Tournament.
The Wolves opened the tournament with an easy 79-48 win over the Mandaree Warriors but then fell to the New Town Eagles in semifinal action on Friday, 83-59. In loser-out action on Saturday, the Wolves stamped their ticket to the Region 8 Tournament with an 87-64 win over the Parshall Braves.
The Wolves, who are 11-12 on the season, will take on the Divide County Maroons in opening day action of the Region 8 Tournament, which will be held Feb. 20, 21 and 23 at Williston State College. The Watford City-Divide County game will be played at approximately 6 p.m.
Watford City 79, Mandaree 48
It was an easy win for Watford City in the first round action of the District 15 Tournament last Thursday as the Wolves blew out the Mandaree Warriors, 79-48.
Watford City jumped out to an 18-9 first-quarter lead and were never challenged by a very young Mandaree team.
Watford City expanded its lead to 23 points, 39-16, at halftime and then outscored the Warriors, 23-14, in the third quarter en route to the win.
Three Watford City players scored in double figures in the win with Cole Rolfsrud netting 14 points to pace the Wolves while Michael Schulz and Shawn Fulwider chipped in 13 and 10 points, respectively.
Rounding out the scoring for the Wolves was Tyler Bates and Mitchell Liebel with eight points each, Lucas Nicholson with seven points, Reid Brown and Logan Fettig with six points each, Brandon Stoker with four points and Dustin Kleppen with three points.
Dayne Fox and Theo Claymore paced Mandaree in scoring with 13 and 12 points, respectively. Also scoring for the Warriors was Aaron Yellow Wolf and Garrette Vegin with nine points each, Chance Lone Bear with three points and Kolvin Fox with two points.
Watford City 18 39 62 79
Mandaree 9 16 30 48
New Town 83, Watford City 59
New Town’s high-powered offense and pressing defense proved to be too much for Watford City in semifinal action of the District 15 Tournament last Friday.
After trailing the Eagles, 23-10, at the end of the first quarter of play, Watford City rallied in the second quarter as the Wolves outscored New Town, 17-9, to cut their deficit to five points, 32-17, at halftime.
Watford City would score first to open the third quarter as the Wolves cut their deficit to four points, but that would be as close as the Wolves would get.
Behind a stifling defense, New Town outgunned the Wolves 24-13 in the third quarter and then slammed the door shut on Watford City in the fourth quarter with a 27-13 scoring advantage to take the 83-59 win.
Shawn Fulwider led Watford City’s scoring attack with 17 points, while Lucas Nicholson and Tyler Bates netted 16 and 10 points, respectively.
Also scoring for Watford City was Dustin Kleppen and Michael Schulz with five points each, Andrew Sampsel with three points, Mitchell Liebel with two points and Logan Fettig with one point.
New Town was led in scoring by Preston Smith with 27 points, while Wayne Fox netted 21 points. Also scoring for the Eagles was Danny Wells with 18 points, Myles Young Wolf with 13 points, while Joe Baker and Alex Natalie ended the game with two points each.
New Town 23 32 56 83
Watford City 10 27 30 59
Watford City 87, Parshall 64
Watford City used a big second- half performance against Parshall in loser-out play of the District 15 Tournament on Saturday to keep their playoff hopes alive.
After playing a very close first quarter which saw the Wolves clinging onto a two-point, 18-16, lead, the Wolves began to gain control of the game in the second quarter.
But it was the Wolves’ second half play that secured them a trip to the Region 8 Tournament as Watford City outscored the Braves, 46-34, in the final two quarters to take the win.
Four Watford City players scored in double figures in the winning effort with Shawn Fulwider pacing the Wolves with 20 points while hauling down 21 rebounds. Also scoring in double digits was Tyler Bates with 15 points, Mitchell Liebel with 14 points and Lucas Nicholson with 10 points.
Rounding out the scoring for the Wolves was Cole Rolfsrud with seven points, Dustin Kleppen and Michael Schulz with six points each, Logan Fettig with four points, Reid Brown with three points and Shane Jorgenson with two points.
Kenny Wells led Parshall in scoring with 34 points, while Jade Moran netted 15 points.
Also scoring for the Braves was Nate Spotted Horse with six points, Tyler Severance with five points, while Daniel Jarski and Justin Roberts ended the game with two points each.
Watford City 18 41 63 87
Parshall 16 30 45 64