The game was expected to be a close battle between two top five Class A teams, and they delivered. The Tanagers went on a 14-6 run after the game was tied 9-9 with 4:15 to play in the first quarter. Vermillion lead 23-15 heading into the second quarter. The Quarriers cut the lead in half by halftime at 41-37.
The second half was back-and-forth and started with a fun third quarter. The two teams traded baskets all quarter long, and Dell Rapids held a 56-54 lead going into the fourth quarter. Vermillion scored the first four points of the fourth quarter, but the Quarriers responded with a 5-0 run to lead 61-58 with 5:50 to go in the game. Dell Rapids was then held scoreless until :29 to go in the game. By that time Vermillion built a 65-61 lead. Brayden Pankonen pulled the Quarriers within two at 65-63 with two free-throws, but the Tanagers put the game out of reach from the free-throw line with :05 to go at 68-63. Colin Rentz made a three-point shot at the buzzer.
The Quarriers shot 44% (24-55) from the field, 28% (5-18) from three-point area, and 65% (13-20) from the free-throw line. Vermillion was 48% (24-50) from the field, 25% (3-12) from three-point area, and 89% (17-19) from the free-throw line.
Colin Rentz had 25 points and 11 rebounds. Pankonen had 10 points. Landon Ruesink had nine points, four assist, and two rebounds. Carter Nelson had seven points, and Connor Rentz had six points.
Dell Rapids (8-3) will play Tiospa Zina at the Dak-12/NEC Clash in Madison at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, January 30th. The game can be seen on Big Sioux Media.