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Eric Peterson, Published March 02 2010

North Dakota Class B, District 2 boys basketball tournament: Grovers roll to 21-0

Dylan Dangerfield went on a scoring binge when it mattered most Monday at the Fargo Civic Center.

The Fargo Oak Grove junior scored 12 of his 21 points in the final quarter to help spark the Grovers to a 71-57 victory against Central Cass for the North Dakota Class B, District 2 boys basketball championship.

“When he attacks the basket, he’s tough to stop,” said Oak Grove head coach Kyle Card, who was named District 2 coach of the year.

“This is a big win for us,” said Dangerfield, who also grabbed nine rebounds. “It was a good win and it will just give us some momentum going into the region tournament.”

Ranked No. 2 in the final Class B poll, the Grovers (21-0) remained perfect and earned a No. 1 seed for the Region 1 tournament, which starts next Monday at the Fargo Civic Center. The No. 9-ranked Squirrels (18-4) will be the No. 2 seed from the district.

“That’s how they beat their teams, they wear them down,” said Central Cass senior Harrison Weber, who scored 22 points and nabbed nine rebounds. “A lot of teams will stick them until the third quarter, maybe the start of the fourth, and then they really wear them down. That’s pretty much it. They just wore us down.”

Central Cass led 44-43 heading into the fourth quarter before the Grovers took over. Dangerfield erupted for 10 points a little more than three minutes into the final quarter. The 6-foot-2 forward drained a pair of 3-pointers during that scoring burst.

“They can score so quickly that if you give them an inch, they’ll hit two 3s on you and all of a sudden a tie ballgame and you’re down six,” Central Cass coach Troy Roesler said. “They’re a very good ballclub.”

Oak Grove scored 18 of the first 24 points in the fourth quarter. Senior Shayden Akason capped that game-changing surge with two foul shots, staking the Grovers to a 61-50 lead with 3 minutes, 25 seconds remaining. Akason scored a game-high 24 points, including 10-for-13 shooting from the foul line.

“We knew that our depth would be a factor and I think it was,” Card added. “We wore them down a little bit.”

Oak Grove was without its second leading scorer, junior forward Evan Holt, who is nursing a bad back.

Card said Holt, who is averaging 16.1 points per game, likely will miss the rest of the season.

Even without Holt, the Grovers had four players scored in double figures in the district title game.

“They’re all good players, great athletes,” Weber said. “Every one of them is working hard in the gym all the time. I know just about all of them. Great guys, they are always working hard, always getting better at their game.”

In other District 2 action, Finley-Sharon-Hope-Page beat Richland 58-51, and Maple Valley defeated Kindred to earn spots in the Region 1 tournament.

Central Cass 14 31 44 57

Oak Grove 15 25 43 71

CENTRAL CASS: Ham 2 0-0 4, Sundquist 1 1-4 4, Zimmerman 4 0-1 8, Streit 6 2-4 15, Weber 9 4-6 22, Bresnahan 1 2-5 4, Schumacher 0 0-0 0. Totals 23 9-23 57.

OAK GROVE: Hesby 0 0-0 0, Akason 7 10-13 24, Dangerfield 9 0-0 21, Zaeske 1 0-0 2, Olson 3 5-6 11, Richards 1 0-0 2, Larson 4 2-4 10, Lloyd 0 1-1 1. Totals 25 18-24 71.

3-point goals: Sundquist, Streit, Dangerfield 3. Total fouls: CC 19, OG 17. Rebounds: CC 38 (Streit 9, Weber 9), OG 43 (Olson 11). Turnovers: CC 12, OG 11.

Finley-Sharon-Hope-Page 58, Richland 51

Richland 7 22 32 51

FSHP 9 26 35 58

R: Griffith 5, Julson 7, Heyen 10, Johnson 15, Workin 5, S. Paczkowski 4, Thompson 5.

FSHP: Parkman 25, Wolff 6, Burchill 3, Archer 5, Nelson 13, Aberle 6.

Maple Valley 48, Kindred 40

Kindred 7 13 26 40

MV 2 21 38 48

K: Kretchman 9, Haberman 4, Cose 4, Bachmeier 4, Luick 13, Reinke 2, Plankers 4.

MV: Behm 19, Smith 6, Von Bank 1, Lerud 7, Preston 5, Haseleu 10.

All-District 2 team

Nick Nelson, FSHP; Daniel Aberle, FSHP; Jesse Behm, Maple Valley; Jordan Haseleu, Maple Valley; A.J. Luick, Kindred; Sam Olson, Oak Grove; Shayden Akason, Fargo Oak Grove; Evan Holt, Oak Grove; Dylan Dangerfield, Fargo Oak Grove; Connor Johnson, Richland; Karl Bartholomay, Enderlin; Riley Streit, Central Cass; Harrison Weber, Central Cass.

District 2 outstanding senior athlete

Sam Olson, Oak Grove, and Harrison Weber, Central Cass

District 2 coach of the year

Kyle Card, Fargo Oak Grove

Readers can reach Forum reporter Eric Peterson at (701) 241-5513.