Bismarck girls, boys beat St. Mary's

2012-12-21T00:05:00Z 2012-12-22T00:01:22Z Bismarck girls, boys beat St. Mary'sBy STEVE THOMAS | Bismarck Tribune Bismarck Tribune
December 21, 2012 12:05 am  • 

Bismarck escaped with a victory in its first outing as the top-ranked girls basketball team in the state, but the margin was paper-thin.

The Demons dodged a bullet Friday night, edging St. Mary’s 48-46 at the BHS Karlgaard gym.

Six-foot senior post Naomi Rust decided the issue, popping in her own rebound with 2 seconds to play to break a tie at 46.

Bismarck’s boys won by blowout in the second game of the night, thumping fifth-ranked St. Mary’s 74-55.

“Coach just told us we were going to get the last shot. ... It was a screen-and-roll and (McKenzie Kiefer) trusted me enough to throw the lob,” Rust said. “I missed the first one, got the rebound and put it in. I thought ‘crap, I’m not missing the second one.’”

The victory was not pretty.

Bismarck led most of the first half, but had to scramble in the last minute. They carved out a 27-25 halftime lead on Ashlee Hilzendeger’s 3-point play 29 seconds before th break.

St. Mary’s stormed out of intermission with a 10-3 run to take a 35-30 advantage. The Saints opened a 37-32 lead on a 12-footer by Megan Hixson with 12:50 on the clock.

MacKayla Feeney responded with a steal and layup that sent BHS off on an 11-2 run, putting the Demons ahead 43-39.

St. Mary’s seized the lead with a 7-2 spurt. Hixson closed the run with a basket from the top of the key to make it 46-45, Saints, with 1:08 on the clock.

Rust tied the game, hitting one of two free throws with :51 to play.

St. Mary’s turned the ball over in its next possession as Rachel Power was called for pushing off with :28 remaining.

That gave Bismarck the last possession.

Rust and Feeney scored 11 points each to pace Bismarck and Keisha Engelhardt tossed in 11. Rust grabbed a dozen rebounds, but St. Mary’s controlled the boards 38-32.

Hixson and Taylor Gendreau grabbed seven caroms each for the Saints. Power took game scoring honors with 14 points and Gendreau added 13.

Neither team enjoyed a good night offensively. St. Mary’s shot 38 percent with 25 turnovers. Bismarck connected at a 37 percent pace with 20 giveaways.

“It felt like we were playing to not lose and you don’t want to play like that,” Rust said. “... Finally we just dug in. You’ve just got to dig in and stay poised and we did that. We had to come back and dig deep.”

Bismarck improved to 2-0 with the win. St. Mary’s slipped to 1-1.

The victory didn’t offer much satisfaction for BHS coach Dallas Hinderer.

“Honestly, we never should have been in that position,” Hinderer said. “It’s nice to battle back and win a game ... but we’ve got a lot of growing to do before March.”

Hinderer said St. Mary’s is obviously not the same team that went 7-14 last season.

“They’re a good basketball team,” he said. “But it’s no surprise. Their program has gotten better and better the last couple of years.”

Bismarck travels to Gillette, Wyo., for its next game. The Demons open the Energy Classic on Thursday. St. Mary’s is idle until Friday when Fargo Shanley visits the Saints’ gym.

ST. MARY’S (46): Lexi Schweitzer 1-4 0-2 2, Dominique Giesen 2-7 0-0 4, Sydney Miller 3-7 1-2 9, Rachel Power 5-6 1-2 14, Taylor Gendreau 5-13 0-2 13, Megan Hixson 2-4 0-0 4, Anna Loomis 0-3 0-0 0, Katelyn Schaffner 0-3 0-0 0, Jarren Fallgatter 0-0 0-0 0, Angie Schumacher 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 18-47 2-8 46.

BISMARCK (48): Keisha Engelhardt 5-10 0-2 10, Naomi Rust 4-11 3-5 11, McKenzie Kiefer 0-5 1-2 1, McKayla Feeney 5-12 0-0 11, RyLee Meier 2-5 0-0 5, Ashlee Hilzendeger 1-4 2-2 4, Brittany Brownotter 0-0 0-0 0, Courtney Trolliey 1-2 1-2 3, Kylee Leingang 1-2 0-0 3. Totals: 19-51 7-13 48.

Halftime: Bismarck 27, St. Mary’s 25

3-pointers: SM 8-17 (Gendreau 3, Power 3, Miller 2), B 3-9 (Meier 1, Feeney 1, Leingang 1). Fouls: SM 15, B 15. Fouled out: None. Rebounds: SM 38 (Gendreau 7, Hixson 7, Giesen 5), B 32 (Rust 12, Engelhardt 9). Turnovers: SM 25, B 20.

Records: SM 1-1 West Region, 1-1 overall; Bismarck 2-0, 2-0.

Bismarck 74, St. Mary’s 55

In athletics there are nights when you feel like you’re running in quicksand, and Thursday was one of them for the Saints.

Bismarck swarmed defensively, using its man-to-man to hold the high-powered St. Mary’s offense to 38 percent shooting and forcing 18 turnovers.

BHS took the lead with the first basket of the night and never looked back, leading from wire to wire.

Six-foot-3 senior Tyler Clairmont scored 12 points as Bismarck steamed to a 37-26 halftime lead.

A 19-4 run capped by Troy Hausauer’s put-back gave the Demons a 64-38 cushion with 9:54 remaining. BHS built a pair of 28-point leads at 68-40 and 72-44 before setting for a 19-point victory margin.

Taylor Schafer, Clairmont and Hausauer tallied 18, 17 and 16 points, respectively, to pace the BHS attack. The Demons shot 49 percent, hitting 28 of 57 shots, including 6-for-14 3-point efficiency.

Clairmont pulled down a dozen rebounds as BHS carved out a 36-30 edge under the glass.

Trent Bohan was the Saints’ lone double-figure scorer with 10 points.

Ben Weisbeck, a returning all-state pick and the Saints’ offensive ace, picked up three fouls in the first half and logged a lot of bench time, scoring just nine points.

Bismarck’s strong performance against the Saints stood in stark contrast to their 53-46 loss to Minot in the season opener.

“We had to play together. We found each others’ strong points and hit them,” Clairmont said. “We played like a team tonight, but we’ve still got a lot of work to do.”

Clairmont said the Demons’ strong defensive effort against St. Mary’s was constructed of fundamental stuff.

“We helped off the ball much better than we did against Minot, but we still have a lot of flaws,” he said. “... We’re happy with this now, but we’ve got to get back to practice.”

Bismarck coach Steve Miller said a lot of the Demons’ apparent improvement was tied to the 49 percent shooting.

“We shot the ball better and everything looks better when you shoot well,” he said. “Our effort was real, real good. We were a little too fast on offense, but our energy level was very, very good.”

Bismarck plays again Thursday in the Energy Classic at Gillette, Wyo. St. Mary’s returns to action Friday, playing host to Fargo Shanley in a nonregional game.

ST. MARY’S (55): Ben Weisbeck 4-6 0-0 9, Scott Nagel 2-4 4-5 8, Darius Sparks 3-10 2-2 9, Trent Bohan 3-8 3-4 10, Ross Kopp 2-7 5-8 9, Brian Obritsch 0-3 0-0 0, Grant Dvorak 2-6 1-4 6, Andrew Wolf 1-2 0-0 2, Hunter Puetz 0-0 0-0 0, Dan Neff 1-1 0-1 2. Totals: 18-47 15-24 55.

BISMARCK (74): Tyler Unruh 4-12 0-2 9, Tyler Clairmont 4-7 7-8 17, 1-4, Ben Jolliffe 0-0 1-2 1, Taylor Schafer 8-13 0-0 18, Josh Seibel 1-2 0-0 3, Bronte Liggins 1-4 0-0 2, Troy Hausauer 6-11 4-4 16, Dylan Werner 1-3 0-0 2, Nick Nustad 2-3 0-0 4, Stanley Jones 1-2 0-0 2, Seth Hellman 0-0 0-0 0, Jon Tharaldsen 0-0 0-0 0, Dominic Gilbertson 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 28-57 12-16 74.

Halftime: Bismarck 37, St. Mary’s 26

3-pointers: SM 4-16 (Sparks 1, Weisbeck 1, Bohan 1, Dvorak 1), B 6-14 (Clairmont 2, Schafer 2, Seibel 1, Unruh 1). Fouls: SM 18, B 21. Fouled out: Weisbeck. Rebounds: SM 30 (Dvorak 6, Obritsch 5, Bohan 5), B 36 (Clairmont 12, Seibel 5, Hausauer 5). Turnovers: SM 18, B 13.

Records: SM 1-1 West Region, 1-1 overall; Bismarck 1-1, 1-1.

Reach reporter Steve Thomas at  250-8244 or

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