Royals secure home playoff berth with big win

Ray Maloney, Sports

WAHPETON, N.D. — Lake Region State College started strong and finished strong in its game against North Dakota State College of Science.

In between, the Royals were virtually relentless.

LRSC opened leads of 12-2, 17-4 and 25-8 in the first half on its way to an impressive 96-81 win over the Wildcats on Wednesday.

The win gives the Royals the No. 2 seed in the upcoming playoffs. LRSC will play host to the same NDSCS team Sunday at the Devils Lake Sports Center. The winner of that game will travel to top seed Williston State March 4 to determine the state champion.

Lake Region improved to 20-9 on the year and 10-4 in the Mon-Dak Conference with the win. NDSCS will take a 22-8 record into Sunday’s game in Devils Lake. The Wildcats finished Mon-Dak play at 8-6.

Freshman Josh Ogden paced Lake Region with 20 points, 15 of those coming in the second half as the Royals turned a 49-32 halftime lead into a 24-33 advantage by scoring eight of the first nine points of the second half to go in front 57-33.

Lake Region would not allow the Wildcats to get any closer than 13 the rest of the way.

Ogden was one of six Royals to finish in double figures.

Casey Larson, another freshman, came off the bench to finish with 17 points, while Gus Kueber and Ismail Kareem finished with 14 and 11 points, respectively.

Josh Colon and Justin Soleim both added 10 points in the winning effort.