HILL CITY, S.D. – The Hill City Ranger girls basketball team upended the Scoopers 61-48 and the Ranger boys dominated the Sturgis boys, 64-41 Tuesday night at Coach Gins Court in Hill City.
The Scooper girls, coming off a big win against the Yankton Gazelles, jumped out to an 11-5 lead over the Rangers midway through the first quarter behind three pointers from Payton Hedderman and Lexi Long. Hill City closed the gap at the end of the first with six points from Hailey Wathen and the Rangers led 12-11 after one quarter.
Hill City outscored Sturgis 19-8 in the second, using stiff defense to force eight Scooper turnovers. Whitney Edwards was perfect from the free throw line in the second, canning four of four charity tosses and the Rangers led at the half, 31-19.
Sturgis cut the lead to 10 points after the third quarter, outscoring Hill City 15-13 in the stanza. The Scoopers were within five points early in the fourth, 46-41, but Edwards continued her hot free throw shooting, making three of four at the line. The Scoopers missed several shots within five feet and the Rangers pulled away for a 61-48 win.
Reese Ludwick led Sturgis (5-7) with nine points and eight rebounds, with Long chipping in eight points. The Scoopers shot 29% from the field and 56% from the charity stripe, with 21 turnovers and 32 rebounds.
Hailey Wathen and Edwards shared the scoring lead for Hill City with 16 points apiece. The Rangers (8-3) shot 32% from the field and a solid 73% from the free throw line. Hill City had 15 turnovers and 24 rebounds.
The Hill City boys came into the matchup against Sturgis with four wins and six losses, playing competitive basketball in a tough region in Class A. The Rangers used a mix of inside-out offense to lead the Scoopers 18-9 after one quarter and 34-11 at the half. Grant Sullivan showed off some slick moves and pinpoint shooting to lead Hill City with 12 points at the halftime break.
Sturgis outscored Hill City 16-11 to cut the gap to 45-27 after three quarters, but the Scoopers could only manage 10 field goal attempts and 14 points in the final quarter to lose to the Rangers by a final of 64-41.
The Scoopers (1-11) were led by Dysen Peterson with eight points, with Owen Cass, Carson Pankratz and Jake Vliem adding six apiece. Sturgis shot 34% from the field and 50% from the free throw line, with 14 turnovers and 21 rebounds.
Kobe Main scored 21 points for Hill City (5-6), with Sullivan contributing 14 points. The Rangers shot 48% from the field and 57% from the charity stripe, with 11 turnovers and 23 boards.
The Sturgis girls are in action again on Thursday night at West Gym as they host the #1 Class A team in South Dakota, the St. Thomas More Lady Cavaliers with tip off scheduled for 7:30pm. The Scooper boys and girls both travel to Rapid City on Saturday to take on the Raiders in an afternoon matchup.