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Tom Mix, Published January 17 2013

No. 6 Grovers top Kindred in boys basketball

FARGO – There is less than a month remaining in the North Dakota Class B boys basketball regular season, and Fargo Oak Grove knows the importance of that timetable.

District tournaments are right around the corner, and many of the remaining games will have implications on seeding.

The No. 6-ranked Grovers defeated Kindred 85-45 for a District 2 victory on Thursday at Gorder Gymnasium. It was Oak Grove’s third straight win since losing to No. 3 Dickinson Trinity on Jan. 5 at the Bismarck New Year’s Tournament.

“When we came back and we said, ‘Now the second part of the season starts,’ ” Oak Grove head coach Kyle Card said. “Getting district wins is what we really want, and we got a district win tonight. That’s what we are pushing for right now. We want the No. 1 seed.”

Central Cass and Oak Grove are both 3-0 in District 2 play.

The Grovers’ defense set the tone in Thursday’s win over the Vikings. Oak Grove (10-2) took advantage of Kindred’s 25 turnovers in the game.

“That’s the style we want to play,” Card said. “Dictate with our defense and rebound. We need to improve on that, but it was working well tonight, and we got some easy shots because of it.”

Oak Grove (10-2) executed an 11-0 run in the first quarter, helping it build a 20-10 advantage after the first eight minutes. Kindred started the second quarter on a 5-0 run, but the Grover never allowed the Vikings to get any closer.

The Grovers led 38-22 at halftime and pulled away in the second half.

“Coming in, one of the keys was how we were going to handle their pressure,” Kindred head coach Brad Woehl said. “We didn’t do a very good job of it and obviously anytime you turn it over to a team that likes to run they are going to get easy baskets on the other end.”

Oak Grove senior guard Jordan Funfar scored 14 of his 17 points in the third quarter. Senior forward Tyler Christianson paced Oak Grove with 19 points.

“It was a good team win,” said Christianson, who converted three 3-pointers in the game. “We wanted to go out, get the pace up high and move the ball to get easy shots. We were able to do that.”

Oak Grove connected for a total of 12 3-pointers in the game.

“We have a lot of guys that can put the ball in the basket,” Card said. “When we go inside and go back out, we rely on the 3-pointers. They were falling tonight.”

Christian Adams and Nick Card each added 11 and 10 points, respectively, for the Grovers.

Junior Eric Bachmeier scored 19 points to lead the Vikings (4-6, 1-2 District 2).

K (4-6): Andel 1 0-0 2, Bachmeier 6 4-6 19, Plankers 3 1-2 7, Kappes 2 6-7 10, Cramer 1 0-1 2, Staton 1 2-2 4, Moffet 0 1-2 1. Totals: 14 14-20 45.

OG (10-2): Berg 2 2-2 6, Widmer 1 0-0 3, Funfar 6 2-2 17, Christianson 7 2-2 19, Conant 2 0-0 5, Kretchman 2 0-2 5, Card 2 0-0 4, Olson 4 0-0 10, Dangerfield 2 0-0 5, Adams 5 1-1 11. Totals: 33 7-9 85.

3-pointers: Funfar 3, Widmer, Christianson 3, Conant, Kretchman, Olson 2, Dangerfield, Bachmeier 3. Total Fouls: K 13, OG 20. Fouled out: Kretchman. Rebounds: K 24 (Andel, Bachmeier, Kappes 4), OG 29 (Card 5). Turnovers: K 25, OG 16.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Tom Mix at (701) 241-5562