By Rich Winter
Watched all of the DeSmet @ Flandreau game from Tuesday night and came away impressed with a tough, experienced ball club that looks like a legitimate Class B girls contender. Not sure if everyone remembers the Round-of-16 game against Castlewood (defending B champs) where DeSemt gave Leslie Tvedt’s Warriors everything they wanted in a 47-44 loss.
After watching DeSmet take down Flandreau, in Flandreau, 49-45, Osthus’s crew plays like they have a chip on their shoulder!
Late in that game in a back-and-forth BATTLE, the senior leadership of DeSmet stood tall. With just over a minute remaining, 6-foot senior Kristen Poppen corralled an offensive rebound and put it back as the Bulldogs led, 42-39. After Flier forward Hannah Parsley scored to cut the margin to 42-41. Senior guard, Rynn Osthus, a crafty left-handed guard sank 2-2 at the line to stretch the lead to 44-41.
After Flandreau was forced to foul, senior Raegen Burke calmly sank 2-2 at the line. Leading 46-41 and with Flandreau looking for a 3-ball, junior Autumn Wilkinson blocked an Ashtyn Bertram 3-pointer…After grabbing the loose ball, Burke was fouled again, same result, 2-2 as DeSmet took a 48-41 lead.
In addition to Poppen in the middle, the Bulldogs have an effecting and imposting 6-foot freshman by the name of Kennadi Buchholz who did damage inside against Flandreau.
This is a deep, experienced and hungry ball club…At 15-1, DeSmet plays 9-9 Howard in Mitchell this weekend, and then, they close with a 3-game homestand against Deubrook Area (14-2), Deuel (8-9 Class A) and Miller (9-3 Class A)
Playing a couple of Class A schools should do nothing to hurt DeSmet’s seedings for the Round-of-16, and if you look at those seedings, DeSmet is current the No. 1 seeded team in Class B.
Not only is this a State tournament team, this is a club that has the tools (and the fire) to bring home a State Title.