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Entering this season, Maple Valley High School girls basketball coach Jeff Miller was cautiously optimistic.
"I knew we'd be better than last year and I knew we'd be able to surprise some teams," Miller said. "I thought we would maybe get off to a slower start and then start picking it up at the end of the year once they started playing together."
But after beating Griggs County Central 54-31 Tuesday, "better than last year" is a goal the team has already achieved.
The Litchville-Marion/Montpelier basketball teams had mixed success in Tuesdayâ€™s games at Ellendale.
On one hand, the girls struggled to score and lost 65-28, but on the other, the boys picked up their second win of the year.
In the girls game, the Rebels were hurt by a bad first half in which they were outscored 39-7.
Ellendale led 20-2 after the first quarter and then scored 19 more in the second.
LMM had scored 21 points in the second half, including 13 in the third quarter.
Tasha Piehl and Tanys Ulmer led LMM with six points each and Brenna Rodin had five, including a 3-pointer.
Valley City High School girls basketball coach Jim McDaniel was plenty pleased with how his team played in Tuesdayâ€™s 48-41 home loss to Fargo Davies.
All night long, the Hi-Liners set the pace of the game, came back from small deficits and continued to play with a balanced offensive attack.
â€śI thought we handled their size, I thought we handled their pressure fine, I liked the pace of the game,â€ť McDaniel said. â€śI liked a lot of the things we did, the key stat for us is that we were 0 for 11 at the free-throw line.â€ť
It was that 0-11 stat that came back to haunt the Hi-Liners.
Maple Valley boys get weekend sweep
The Maple Valley boys basketball team had few problems offensively or defensively last weekend with home wins over Enderlin and North Sargent.
Thursday the Raiders beat Enderlin 60-39.
Maple Valley allowed only ten points in each of the first three quarters and had a 39-20 lead by halftime.
Ethen Preston led the Raiders with 16 points, including a 4-4 performance at the free-throw line, and was one of four players to score in double digits for the team.
In a 61-54 win last week against Fargo South, the Valley City girls basketball team played the epitome of a balanced game.
The Hi-Liners five starters â€”guards Megan McDaniel and Amanda Tangen, forwards Jenna Jacob and Mariah Olstad, and center Allyson Suhr â€” combined for all but 56 of the points.
Not only did all of them hit double digits in scoring but the lowest scoring starter, Tangen, finished with only two less points than the teamâ€™s leaders in scoring, Suhr and Olstad, who had 12. The other two starters had 11.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) â€” Ben Roethlisberger threw a few extra passes in near darkness after the lights went out at Candlestick Park.
The additional throws were all for naught. Big Ben never found his groove playing on a bum ankle â€” and the San Francisco 49ersâ€™ top-ranked defense wasnâ€™t about to let the most unique of home-field advantages get away in a 20-3 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday night.
â€śJust wondering how this happens at a professional stadium,â€ť Roethlisberger said of not one but two blackouts.
Monday Night Football nearly became a Monday Night Fiasco.
As Shane Undem neared the end the 145-pound championship wrestling match at the Valley City Holiday Tournament Saturday, even he had his doubts over whether heâ€™d be able to pull out a win.
With the clock ticking down into the final 20 seconds against Wahpetonâ€™s Wyatt Meyer, the Valley City High School junior trailed 6-5 and Meyer wasnâ€™t giving him much to work with.
â€śHeâ€™s a strong defensive wrestler and when you get someone like that itâ€™s hard. Theyâ€™re good at what they do on defense and itâ€™s hard to generate any moves against him.â€ť
For as long as Molly Willson can remember, sheâ€™s been a gymnast.
And the way Valley City High School senior looks at it, the sport has given her abilities that very few others possess.
â€śItâ€™s different, itâ€™s not like the usual sport that everyoneâ€™s in,â€ť Willson said. â€śEveryoneâ€™s in basketball and those sports. Itâ€™s nice to be in something that not everyone can do because anyone can go shoot a basketball. Not anyone can flip on a floor.â€ť
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) â€” The Minnesota Vikings faced a quarterback they simply couldnâ€™t stop. Christian Ponder saw a future role model.
Drew Brees threw for 412 yards in a little more than three quarters for New Orleans and got his fifth touchdown pass before Ponderâ€™s fifth completion, leading the surging Saints to their sixth straight victory, 42-20 over the Vikings on Sunday.
FARGO, N.D. (AP) â€” North Dakota State coach Craig Bohl received a present from the president of the university after his team's first game of the season. It was an atlas of Texas.
He put in on display Saturday after quarterback Brock Jensen accounted for 231 total yards despite playing with the flu and receiver Warren Holloway scored twice to help the Bison defeat Georgia Southern 35-7 in a Football Championship Subdivision semifinal.