Hot shooting leads to a Fargo South win over Devils Lake, 82-59
By Sam Herder
Journal Sports Editor
The Devils Lake girls basketball team (8-12, 8-11 Eastern Dakota Conference) ran into a scorching-hot Fargo South team (7-12, 7-11) Friday in the Sports Center. The Bruins pulled away in the second half behind their shooting for an 82-59 EDC victory.
Most of South’s damage was from Madeline Erickson, who scored 43 points behind eight 3-pointers, six of which came in the first half.
“They shot the ball really well,” Firebirds head coach Justin Klein said. “We didn’t shoot well and missed way too many easy shots in the second half to think about staying with him. We stayed with them in the first half and played okay. Good players like (Erickson) take over and in this conference, you can’t have that. And really, she’s the game.”
Despite Erickson’s performance, the Firebirds were able to take a 35-34 lead into halftime. DL was on a 6-0 run to end the first half until Erickson sunk another 3-pointer at the buzzer.
Devils Lake scored just four points in the first five minutes of the second half, but was able to contain South’s offense as both teams struggled to score.
“I’m more disappointed with the offense and us settling for the 3 and not looking inside,” Klein said. “And then in the second half when we did look inside, then we couldn’t score.”
With a 43-43 tie and 11 minutes to play, neither team was able to sustain a run to take control of the game in the next few minutes. A Mattea Vetsch free throw and a Morgan Pedeliski layup in quick succession brought DL’s deficit to 51-48 with seven minutes, 45 seconds remaining.
But the Bruins responded with a 6-0 run.
Two more Vetsch free throws made it 60-54 in favor of South with five minutes left. Then the Bruins found their shooting magic again, going on a 15-0 run to break the game open.
“They hit some shots and we couldn’t counter back,” Klein said. “The first half, they hit some shots and we countered back with some 3s. A couple times, we turned the ball over and they knocked one down. They hit shots and we didn’t.”
A win for the Firebirds would have sealed a sixth seed for the East Region Tournament. While South remains 1.5 games back in seventh place, the Bruins can pass the Firebirds if they win their two remaining home games and DL loses at No. 4-ranked Grand Forks Red River.
The Firebirds host a play-in game, most likely this weekend, and will wait to see which matchup they get.
Emily Schafer 17
Mikayla Wallace 16
Mattea Vetsch 10
Morgan Pedeliski 8