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Eric Peterson, Published February 13 2012

No. 3-ranked Central Cass powers to District 2 championship

FARGO – Central Cass played at its tempo Monday night at the Fargo Civic Center. Kindred had a hard time keeping pace.

The No. 3-ranked Squirrels exploded for 24 points in the first quarter to spark an 84-53 victory against Kindred for the North Dakota Class B, District 2 boys basketball title.

“I like that we were able to get Kindred to go out and run,” said Central Cass head coach Troy Roesler, who was named District 2 coach of the year. “We kind of got them in the full-court to start with.”

Central Cass (22-0) stayed unbeaten and earned the top seed from District 2 for the Region 1 tournament, which starts Monday.

“It’s real hard when they are athletic and move the ball up and down the court so quick,” Kindred coach Brad Woehl said of Central Cass. “We had trouble getting back in transition. I knew that was going to be an issue. We had it as one of our keys, but we didn’t execute it.”

The Squirrels scored 24 of the first 30 points to quickly build a double-digit lead. Ellery Bresnahan fueled that early spree. The 5-foot-8 point guard scored 10 of his game-high 22 points in the first quarter.

Bresnahan drained a 3-pointer from the right wing to build a 24-6 lead with 2 minutes, 52 seconds to play in the first quarter.

“We were seeing what we could do to push the tempo and it started to work out for us,” Bresnahan said. “It always helps with the way we push the ball to get easy points off fast breaks and layups.”

Even when the Vikings scored, Central Cass quickly countered with hoops just seconds later on a number of occasions.

“This year we kind of emphasized even on a made basket, we want to run harder,” Roesler said. “Sometimes that’s when teams let up.”

Kindred cut the Central Cass lead to 46-36 after junior Joey Ness sank a 15-foot jumper with 6:33 to play in the third quarter.

The Squirrels took control from that point. They countered with a 24-5 run that spilled into the fourth quarter. Central Cass took a 70-41 lead after senior forward Matt Zimmerman scored a transition layup with 7:18 to play in the fourth quarter.

Zimmerman, who was named District 2 senior athlete of the year, ended with 18 points. Senior guard Ben Sundquist also added 18 points.

Sophomore forward Eric Bachmeier paced Kindred with 19 points. The Vikings are the No. 2 seed from District 2 for the region tournament.

“I have to be awfully proud of this group of kids,” Woehl said. “I don’t think anybody really gave us a chance to play in the district championship game, so I’m awfully proud of their effort.”

KINDRED (15-7): Reinke 4 0-0 9, Bachmeier 7 3-4 19, Milbrandt 0 0-0 0, Ness 4 0-0 8, J. Plankers 4 5-6 13, Kappes 0 0-1 0, Andel 0 0-0 0, Holland 0 0-0 0, Nyhof 0 2-2 2, C. Plankers 0 0-0 0, Olien 0 0-0 0, Staton 1 0-0 2, Moffet 0 0-0 0, Cramer 0 0-0 0. Totals 20 10-13 53.

CENTRAL CASS (22-0): Zimmerman 8 0-0 18, Bresnahan 7 6-7 22, Sundquist 6 4-5 18, Ueland 2 0-0 4, Roesler 4 2-4 10, Utt 2 0-0 4, Lubbers 1 0-0 3, Breske 0 0-0 0, Ebach 0 0-0 0, Rieniets 0 0-0 0, Giermann 0 0-0 0, Larson 1 0-0 3, Rehovsky 0 0-0 0, Radermacher 1 0-0 2, Weber 0 0-0 0. Totals 32 12-15 84.

3-point goals: Reinke, Bachmeier 2, Zimmerman 2, Bresnahan 2, Sundquist 2, Lubbers, Larson. Total fouls: Kindred 13, CC 15.

All-District 2 team

Jack Plankers, Kindred; Eric Bachmeier, Kindred; Kayne Griffith, Richland; Austin Heyen, Richland; Jordan Funfar, Fargo Oak Grove; Matt Zimmerman, Central Cass; Ellery Bresnahan, Central Cass; Thomas Lindgren, Enderlin; Jordan Haseleu, Maple Valley; Tyler Smith, Maple Valley; Ethen Preston, Maple Valley.

District 2 senior athlete of the year

Matt Zimmerman, Central Cass

District 2 coach of the year

Troy Roesler, Central Cass

District 2 athletic director of the year

Perry Piatz, Kindred

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

Peterson’s blog can be found at peterson.areavoices.com