District 11 girls tourney wide open
The Rugby High School girls basketball team may be the No. 4 seed when the District 11 tournament begins Friday, but they have one advantage over every other team. The Panthers will play the tournament on their home floor at Charles Hanneman Gymnasium.
RHS opens the tournament against No. 5 seed Sawyer at 4:30 p.m. When the Flashes visited in January, the Panthers won 69-46.
Sawyer was without two starters – senior McKenzi Faul and junior Kyler Roteliuk – due to injuries. The Panthers were relentless and controlled the tempo with four scorers in double figures, led by junior guard Darby Deckert’s 16 points.
“I think we’re finally bringing it together,” Deckert said. “We’re playing as a team and now we know how to finish games off. We really do.”
The winner of the quarterfinal will play the winner of No. 1 TGU vs. No. 8 Drake-Anamoose on March 1. The other two quarterfinals match No. 2 Velva vs. No. 7 Westhope-Newburg and No. 3 Bottineau vs. No. 6 Dunseith.
The Panthers aren’t looking ahead of Sawyer, but the team won’t be afraid of anybody in the field, having beat the top-seeded Titans 59-34.
“It’s anybody’s ball game,” Brossart said. “It’s who’s gonna put three good games together in four days. We came out, we shot the ball really well in Towner and Mattie (Schmitt), we kept her in check. Whether or not that’s gonna happen again, I don’t know. She’s a heck of a ballplayer, it’s her senior year, she’s gonna be ready to go and so is the rest of their team.”
Schmitt, a senior forward, broke TGU’s all-time scoring record in Tuesday’s 64-58 win over Glenburn. Schmitt scored a game-high 29 points on the milestone evening.