In a raucous atmosphere at the Winner Armory, the Pine Ridge Thorpes stunned the #6 seeded Dell Rapids Quarriers 69-66 in the Round of 16 on Thursday, March 8th. The win by Pine Ridge ended an 11-game winning streak for Dell Rapids and sent the Thorpes to the State A tournament.
Dell Rapids delivered the first blow in the game getting out to an 8-0 lead in the first minute and a half. The Quarriers were on fire throughout the first quarter scoring 29 points. Logan Heim led the way going four-for-four on three points shots in the first quarter helping Dell Rapids to a 29-16 lead after at the first quarter break. The Quarrier lead grew to 15 points at 33-18 after a made three-point shot by Mason Schmidt and a made free throw by Drew Van Regenmorter with 5:23 to go in the second quarter. Dell Rapids maintained an eight-to-twelve point lead throughout the second quarter. Jeffrey Schuch made a three-point shot from the left wing with 2:03 to go to give Dell Rapids a 40-28 lead. Pine Ridge, however, scored the final five points of the quarter to cut the lead to seven at 40-33 at halftime.
The Thorpes scored the first three points of the third quarter to cut the lead to 40-36. Schuch ended the Pine Ridge 8-0 run with a layup from the left side with 6:00 to play in the third quarter. The two teams traded three-point shots over the next :30, and Dell Rapids held a 45-41 lead with 5:20 to go. Dell Rapids was able to maintain the four-point lead over the next 3:00 of play. The Thorpes went on a quick 4-0 spurt with Corey Brown tying the game at 49-49 with 1:50 to play. Pine Ridge then closed out the quarter on a 4-1 run. The Thorpes outscored Dell Rapids 20-10 in the third quarter and led 53-50 heading into the fourth quarter.
Dell Rapids then went on a 4-1 run to open the fourth quarter as Schuch tied the game at 54-54 with 5:45 to play. The two teams traded baskets again. The game was tied 56-56 with 5:18 to go. Schuch gave Dell Rapids a 58-56 lead after an offensive rebound and put back with 4:43 left to play. The game was again tied at 59-59 with 2:55 remaining. After a timeout, Brown got a tough shot over Schuch to go through to give Pine Ridge a 61-59 lead with 2:40 to go. Schuch again got a driving layup to fall on a nice pass from Carson Rentz to tie the game at 61-61 with 2:02 to play. The Thorpes scored the next four points and led 65-61 with :37 left. On the next Dell Rapids possessions, Rentz was fouled on a three-point shot giving him three free throws. Rentz made all three to cut the lead to 65-64 with :21 on the clock. After a foul and two made free throws by Pine Ridge, Dell Rapids had an open three-point shot with :12 to go that would have tied the game, but the shot was too strong and Thorpes got the defensive rebound. Dell Rapids was forced to foul, and Corey Blacksmith made both free throws to give Pine Ridge a 69-64 lead. Rentz made a last-second shot at the buzzer, but Pine Ridge came away victorious.
Dell Rapids finished the game shooting 41% from the field. They were just 23% from three-point area and 67% from the free-throw line. The Quarriers had a total of 35 team rebounds and 21 team assists.
Schuch led Dell Rapids with 21 points, 11 rebounds, and five assists. Mason Schmidt added 17 points. Heim finished with 12 points, 15 rebounds, and six assists. Elijah Story and Rentz both finished with six points in the game. Rentz also had seven assists.
Dell Rapids has their season come to an end with an overall record of 17-5.