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Tom Mix, Published February 27 2012

Central Cass tops Kindred for District 2 title

FARGO – The last time Central Cass played Kindred, the Vikings’ press made life uncomfortable for the Squirrels.

Central Cass used the time away from Kindred to adjust and prepare for another game against the Vikings.

The Squirrels outscored previously undefeated Class B, No. 2-ranked Kindred by 12 points in the second half to post a 59-47 win in the District 2 girls basketball championship game on Monday at the Fargo Civic Center.

Both teams advance to the Region 1 tournament next Monday at Lisbon High School.

Central Cass junior Hannah Breske paced the Squirrels the entire game, finishing with 20 points.

“We told the girls coming into the game that there is no pressure on us,” first-year Central Cass head coach Ryan Mears said. “They came out loose and as the game went on they gained more and more confidence.”

The Vikings held a 9-7 advantage after the first quarter, and their effective press defense appeared to be working.

Turnovers and Central Cass’ ability to knock down shots spoiled Kindred’s ability to get any kind of rhythm on either end of the court.

“We turned the ball over way too many times,” Kindred head coach Perry Piatz said. “They handled our pressure and made some adjustments. I think that was the difference. They took care of the ball and we didn’t.”

The teams were tied 25-all at halftime.

The Squirrels (20-2) opened the third quarter with a 13-6 run, thwarting the Vikings press the entire way.

“The first time we played (Kindred) we didn’t handle their press,” Mears said. “We made some adjustments and attacked their press this time. We knocked down some shots when we got them and did some good things on defense.”

Breske hit some of those shots down the stretch for the Squirrels scoring 14 of her 20 points in the second half.

“We just needed to stay calm and not let their defense get into our heads,” Breske said.

Senior Braidy Dahl paced the Vikings (20-1) with 20 points.

Bethany Voss added 10 points for the Squirrels.

Central Cass was 16-for-18 at the free throw line.

Central Cass 7 25 41 59

Kindred 9 25 35 47

CC: Weber 2 4-4 8, Voss 3 2-2 10, Titus 2 0-0 5, Breske 5 9-10 20, Dixon 4 0-0 8, Cramer 3 1-2 8. Totals: 19 16-18 59.

K: Allmaras 3 0-0 7, Graff 0 0-3 0, Schmit 3 0-0 6, Glasow 3 2-3 8, Dahl 7 4-4 20, Otterson 0 2-2 2, Bugner 0 1-3 1, Podolak 1 1-3 3. Totals 18 10-18 47.

Halftime: CC 25, K 25. 3-pointers: Allmaras, Voss 2, Titus, Breske, Cramer. Total Fouls: CC 17, K 16. Rebounds CC 27 (Weber 7), K 31 (Dahl 8).

All-District 2 tournament team: Maple Valley: Rylee Nudell. Oak Grove: Tatum Holt, Hannah Kelley. Enderlin: Krista Thielges. Richland: Olivia Johnson. Northern Cass: Whitney Ward, Lexi Zieske. Finley-Sharon-Hope-Page: Madison Koenig. Kindred: Kellie Schmit, Casey Allmaras. Central Cass: Hannah Breske, Bethany Voss, Courtney Dixon.

District 2 Senior Athlete of the Year: Olivia Johnson, Richland.

District 2 Coach of the Year: Perry Piatz, Kindred.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Tom Mix at (701) 451-5562