BOX ELDER, S.D. – The Sturgis Scooper boys basketball team overcame a dismal second quarter to earn a convincing 53-41 win over the Douglas Patriots and the Douglas girls relied on senior leadership to beat the Scoopers, 38-28.
It was the season openers for both the Sturgis boys and the girls after several cancellations and postponements due to severe winter weather conditions.
The Patriots jumped out to a 5-0 lead early in the first on a three by Jason Fisher and an easy two by Jacob Blaisure. The Scoopers closed the gap with six points on nifty inside moves by Jake Vliem and trailed Douglas 14-12 after one quarter. Senior forward Dysen Peterson got two quick fouls early for Sturgis and had to sit for most of the first quarter and half of the second.
The Scooper boys could only manage two field goals in 16 attempts in the second quarter, but senior transfer Ben Miller’s scrappy play kept Sturgis in the ball game as he fought for loose balls, snagged rebounds and scored two in the second. Tyan Buus added a three pointer for the Scoopers and Douglas took a 21-18 lead into the locker room at halftime.
Ryan Heinert, a sophomore transfer from Spearfish, came out on fire in the third for the Scoopers, hitting two quick shots to give Sturgis a 22-21 lead. Peterson also found his groove in the third, scoring six points and grabbing two offensive boards. Sturgis tied the game at 30 after three quarters.
Douglas went ice cold in the fourth quarter, hitting three of 11 shots as Sturgis turned on the afterburners, going on a 19-3 run to take a 49-33 lead. The Patriots were forced to foul to attempt to get back into the ballgame, but the Scoopers made 10 of 19 charity tosses late in the game, outscoring the Patriots 23-11 in the final quarter to get the victory.
Tyan Buus and Dysen Peterson led the Scoopers (1-0) in scoring with 13 points apiece. Buus scored 10 of his 13 in the fourth quarter, sinking five of six free throws. Jake Vliem added nine points and nine rebounds, with Ryan Heinert chipping in eight points. Sturgis shot 33% from the field, going 19 for 56 and made 13 of 24 free throws for 54%. The Scoopers had 11 turnovers and 34 rebounds. Douglas (1-2) was led by Jesse Hand with 12 points. Jason Fisher added six points and 12 boards. Douglas shot 28% from the field, 45% from the free throw line and had 17 turnovers.
In the girls matchup, neither Sturgis nor Douglas could manage much offense early in the contest and the Scoopers led 8-5 after one quarter. Douglas outscored Sturgis 10-6 in the second and led 15-14 at the half.
The teams played an evenly matched contest through three quarters. Scooper senior Keeley Heikes scored a field goal and added three free throws in the third and the Scoopers led 24-23 headed into the fourth. Sturgis could only manage two field goals in the final quarter and did not shoot a free throw, as Patriot senior Keana Watson carried her team to victory, scoring nine points on a three-pointer and going six for six from the charity stripe in the fourth to give Douglas the 38-28 win.
Watson led Douglas (1-3) with 17 points. The Patriots shot 17% from the field and 57% from the free throw line. Douglas had 10 turnovers and 21 rebounds. Freshman Tori Williams and senior Keeley Heikes had five points each for Sturgis (0-1). The Scoopers shot 18% from the field, making 10 of 55 shots and had 20 turnovers. Sturgis went seven of 12 from the charity stripe for 58% and had 33 rebounds, 12 of those on the offensive side.
The Scooper girls travel to Pierre on Saturday to take on the Lady Governors, while the Sturgis boys host Pierre in West Gymnasium. Tip off for the girls game is at noon, while the boys tip off at 1pm. KBHB Sports will provide updates on the girls game and will provide play by play for the boys game.