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Second round game goes to top seeded tourney team

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Friday night the Mighty Potter County Battlers played round two of the State B tournament in Aberdeen against the number one seeded team, the James Valley Christian Vikings from Huron. Although it was a good game, the final score did not end as Battler fans had hoped at 55-72.
The Battlers got the tip and Caleb Meinke sunk a three pointer to start the scoring. He dropped in another three about a minute later, with two points added in between by Mitch Hinckley to put Potter County at eight points. The Vikings caught up quickly, although it took them four baskets to do it. Rease Logan went to the foul line and dropped two baskets to put the men in red ahead again. JVC soon took the lead away from the Battlers for a few seconds, but it came back to a 12 point tie.
JVC drew a foul and put two in from the line. With 35 seconds in the quarter the Battlers tied it up, but with a couple seconds left, the Vikings took the lead and the quarter ended with the Battlers trailing by two at 14-16.
Going into the second the Vikings put up two points but that was soon countered by Meinke with another three points on the Battler side of the board. JVC did their best to put a spread in the score, but the Battler stayed close. Logan headed back to the foul line and dropped one of the two baskets to put the score at 20-23. After a time out, the Vikings put in three. They spread the score to eight points before Kole Hawkinson nailed a three pointer to tighten it up to a five point spread. A free throw by Meinke brought the score to 26-30 to take the teams into the locker room  for the half.
The second half got underway with James Valley Christian in control of the ball, but Tanner Heuer put in the first two points.
A couple minutes later he stole the ball and drew a foul, which added another point to the Battler score to 29-35. Potter County struggled with the ball, missing a few shots while the Vikings caught fire and put a 12 point spread in the score to 31-43. Tanner Storer made it to the foul line and brought the score within 10. The Viking would have none of that, so they made a few fast breaking plays to put in some layups and up their numbers 35-47. JVC outscored the Battlers 19-9 in the third quarter, so it didn’t take long to break the lead wide open. The quarter ended with the Battlers down by 18 with a score of 36-54.
In the fourth, Potter County saw some baskets, but it seemed like every time the Battlers scored, the Vikings were ready to counter it. In quick fashion the James Valley Christian lead spread to 20 points, 42-62. A fast break steal by Chayce Hall put him alone under the basket to add two points. Meinke nailed another three pointer bringing it to 49-66 with 2:30 in the game. The action moved back and forth, and the Vikings just couldn’t miss their layups. With under a minute, the hopes of a state championship in basketball waned, and the reality of a possible third place came to the surface. Storer swished in a couple free throws before it ended. With 16 seconds left, the Battlers went to the bench, bringing out a fresh group to get some state play time. The game ended with the Vikings on top 55-72. The Battlers play for third place on Saturday night during the final round of the State B tournament in Aberdeen on March 22 against Ethan.
Battler head coach Bryce Turner went into the game with a 44-4 record for the team during the past two years.
-Molly McRoberts
Stats
Potter County 14 26 36 55
James Valley Christian 16 30 54 72
POTTER COUNTY (22-3): Tanner Heuer 1-4 1-2 3, Kole Hawkinson 2-3 0-0 5, Caleb Meinke 6-17 3-3 19, Mitchell Hinckley 3-6 1-3 7, Chayce Hall 5-10 0-0 10, Colton Hall 0-3 0-1 0, Trent Donovan 0-0 0-0 0, Tim Heien 0-0 0-0 0, Chase Sievers 0-0 0-0 0, Hayden Simon 0-0 0-0 0, Rease Logan 0-3 3-4 3, Treyson Drew 0-0 0-0 0, Dalton Storer 0-0 0-0 0, Tanner Storer 2-8 4-4 8, Ryan Hall-Sundberg 0-1 0-1 0. Totals 19-55 12-18 55.
JAMES VALLEY CHRISTIAN (24-1): Cole Glanzer 2-2 0-1 4, Tim Wager 4-5 0-1 8, Alex Waldner 7-12 2-3 17, Nathan Wedel 7-18 9-11 24, Andrew Ulvestad 8-14 1-1 17, Jayden Waldner 1-1 0-0 2, Ben Loewen 0-1 0-0 0, Michael Mendel 0-0 0-0 0, Tristan Wieting 0-0 0-0 0, Caleb Hofer 0-0 0-0 0, Kellen Hood 0-0 0-0 0, Jonathon Blom 0-0 0-0 0, Daniel Stahl 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 29-53 12-17 72.
3-point field goals — Potter County 5-18 (Hawkinson 1-2, Meinke 4-8, Chayce Hall 0-2, Colton Hall 0-1, T. Storer 0-4, Hall-Sundberg 0-1); James Valley Christian 2-9 (Wager 0-1, A. Waldner 1-2, Wedel 1-3, Ulvestad 0-3). Total fouls — Potter County 16; James Valley Christian 17. Fouled out — Potter County, None; James Valley Christian, Glanzer, Wager. Rebounds — Potter County 29 (Hinckley 8); James Valley Christian 38 (Wedel 17). Assists — Potter County 5 (Chayce Hall 4); James Valley Christian 14 (Ulvestad 6). Blocks — Potter County 1 (Meinke 1); James Valley Christian 3 (Ulvestad 2). Steals — Potter County 8 (Chayce Hall 3); James Valley Christian 6 (Wager 2). Turnovers — Potter County 19; James Valley Christian 20. Officials — Jay Kusler, Donnie Kayser, Jordon Odens.

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