The Elkton-Lake Benton Elks took the lead late in the game and hung on for a 76-70 win over the Dell Rapids St Mary Cardinals in Elkton on Tuesday, January 12th in a battle of teams near the top of Region 4B.
The Elks held the first quarter break lead of the game. Elkton-Lake Benton led 20-15 after the first eight minutes of the ball game. St Mary went on a 10-0 run in the first minute and a half in the second quarter for a 25-20 lead, and the Cardinals held a 36-29 lead at halftime.
St Mary kept the lead throughout the entire third quarter. They were able to keep about a three-to-five point lead and held a 52-47 advantage heading into the final quarter. The Elks regained the lead at 58-57 with 4:47 to play after a three-point shot by Miles Harming. It was a lead they wouldn’t lose again. Connor Libis tied the game 60-60 with 3:56 to go, and Ashaun Roach-Valandra tied it again at 62-62 with 3:26. The Elks were able to slowly pull away after that point as multiple Cardinals started to foul out of the game.
Three players finished in double figures for St Mary. Libis led all scorers in the game with 32 points. Roach-Valandra ended with 23 points, and Sam Palmer had 10 points. Noah Dennis had three points, and John Pica had two points. Elkton-Lake Benton was led by Matthew Nibbe with 20 points, Mason Gaumer and Aiden Erickson with 14 points, and Harming with 13 points.
The Cardinals (5-3) will host the Oldham-Ramona/Rutland Raiders on Friday, January 15th. The game can be seen on Big Sioux Media.