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Tom Mix, Published January 18 2014

Grovers hold off Grafton boys

FARGO – Disruptive defense and timely shooting was what put the Fargo Oak Grove boys basketball team over the top Saturday.

The Grovers held on to defeat Grafton 75-63 during the 23rd annual Oak Grove Shootout at the Fargo Civic Center.

Oak Grove (11-1) led the entire second half, but the Spoilers (7-4) pulled to within six points of the Grovers with five minutes remaining.

That was as close as Grafton would get thanks to the persistent shooting of Oak Grove juniors Carter Kretchman and Christian Adams.

With 3 minutes, 24 seconds remaining in the game, Kretchman connected for a 3-pointer to give Oak Grove a 67-56 lead. On the Grover’s next possession, Adams hit a 3-pointer to help the Grovers regain control of the game.

“Carter hit a nice shot,” Oak Grove head coach Kyle Card said. “I know he was frustrated about a few of his earlier shots, but that one was big and Christian added another one.”

Kretchman finished with a game-high 21 points for the Grovers. Adams added 20 points.

“My teammates did a great job of setting me up for open shots the entire game,” Kretchman said. “On the last 3-pointer I just cleared my head and it went in.”

Oak Grove led 36-30 at halftime and turned up its defensive intensity in the third quarter.

Senior guards Coulton Dangerfield and Austin Promersberger led the way, disrupting Grafton’s front court with increased pressure.

Grafton had 20 turnovers in the game, many caused by Oak Grove’s defense.

“Our defense created a lot of easy baskets for us on the offensive end,” Card said. “Austin and Coulton were harassing up top and that was fun to watch in the third quarter.”

Senior forward Nick Card finished with 18 points for the Grovers and Dangerfield poured in 10.

Six-foot-6 senior post Garek Droog paced the Spoilers with 16 points and six rebounds.

“Every time we got close, they made a shot,” Grafton head coach Riley Lillemoen said. “It wasn’t like we didn’t defend them well either because they made some difficult shots. That happens, but one thing that hurt us was the turnovers.”

Grafton 17 30 45 63

Oak Grove 22 36 58 75

GRAFTON (7-4): Baldwin 4 0-0 11, Droog 8 0-0 16, Contreras 5 0-0 10, Martinez 4 1-1 9, Hernandez 5 1-1 12, Nelson 1 0-0 2, Garza 1 0-0 2, Carignan 0 1-6 1. Totals: 28 3-8 63.

OAK GROVE (11-1): Kretchman 7 5-6 21, Dangerfield 5 0-2 10, Card 8 2-2 18, Adams 6 5-7 20, Promersberger 1 2-2 4, Olson 1 0-0 2. Totals: 28 14-19 75.

3-pointers: Baldwin 3, Hernandez, Kretchman 2, Adams 3. Total fouls: G 17, OG 10. Rebounds: G 28 (Droog 6), OG 21 (Card 8). Turnovers: G 20, OG 10.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Tom Mix at (701) 241-5562