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JAMESTOWN â€” Before each of his teamâ€™s games, Barnes County North girls basketball coach Randy Hooey writes down five goals on a white board.
The goals are what he sees as keys to the game.
But in Mondayâ€™s 58-29 regional qualifying win over Litchville-Marion/Montpelier at the Class B District 5 tournament at the Jamestown Civic Center, the priority was getting the game going from the beginning.
â€śNumber one and two today were fast start,â€ť Hooey said. â€śThatâ€™s something we havenâ€™t done so far in this district tournament.â€ť
The girls had little trouble getting to a quick start as the Bison stampeded to a 21-3 lead in the first quarter and were up 34-11 by halftime.
â€śWe just knew we had to come out with intensity and just take it to them right away,â€ť said Barnes County North senior Emily Albrecht. â€śThatâ€™s all coach kept telling us â€” go hard right away and theyâ€™ll shut down.â€ť
So the Bison went hard with a non-stop press for the entire first quarter and allowed only one shot from the floor in the first 11 minutes, and only four in the first half.
BCNâ€™s press led to 11 steals in the half and 19 total turnovers against LMM. Â Those transitioned into a quick paced game that allowed Albrecht and her teammates plenty of open shots all over the floor. Â Once they started landing, they came in bunches.
Sydney Reimers scored the teamâ€™s first four points, then Albrecht had four straight, followed by a three-point play from Lauren McMillan and then two 3-pointers from Albrecht.
From there, it kept going with points from Reimers, Albrecht, McMillian , SaraLi Peterson and Dacia Eberle before halftime.
Albrecht finished with 13 points in the half and was one of two players (with Reimers) to lead the Bison with 16 points.
â€śShe scored a ton of points in the first half,â€ť Hooey said. â€śThatâ€™s something we need out of her every single game.â€ť
Though the Bison abandoned the press for most of the second quarter and at points throughout the game, Hooey used it at various points when his team started to struggle.
The Bison eventually led by as many as 31 in the second half.
The win advanced the Bison to the Class B Regional 3 tournament, which starts Monday in Napoleon School.
BCN was led by Albrecht and Reimers with 16 points and Eberle had 8.
For LMM, it was the last game of the co-op between Litchville-Marion and Montpelier for basketball, though the schools will continue to co-op in volleyball.
The Rebels were led by Tasha Piehl and Sidney Headland, who had eight points each.
MV qualifies for regional
The Maple Valley High School girls will be advancing to the Region 1 tournament.
The Raiders beat Richland 57-47 Tuesday in a Class B District 2 qualifying game in Fargo.