The Tigers used a 14-5 run in the third quarter to take the lead and set up a 62-58 win over Ellendale in Ellendale, N.D., on Saturday.
“Another great game,” said coach TJ Knudson. “The 20-point third quarter was big.”
Ellendale led 30-29 early in the third quarter when Braxton Albers hit a three-pointer to give the Tigers the lead. Reese Cerney picked Ellendale off on their next possession and scored to make it 34-30. The Cardinals scored two baskets, but in between, Cerney hit a three. With the Tigers leading 37-34, Noah Feyereisen and Trace Cerney hit buckets before Reese Cerney picked off another ball and scored on the breakaway to lift the Tiger lead to 43-34.
Ellendale kept chipping away and drew back to within one point at 54-53 after hitting back-to-back three pointers. Reese Cerney responded again with two straight hoops to push the lead back to five points at 58-53 with less than two minutes to play. Leading 58-56 with 1:23 to play, the Tigers used free throws on offense and forced turnovers on the next two Ellendale possession to put the game away. The Tigers hit four free throws and led 62-56 with nine seconds left before the Cardinals scored a meaningless basket at the buzzer.
The game was back and forth in the first half. The Tigers led 11-8 after one quarter and led 26-21 late in the second quarter until Ellendale scored five straight to tie the game at 26-26 at the intermission.
Reese Cerney and Albers had 18 points each to lead the Tigers. Albers drilled four three-pointers, while Cerney converted four steals into layups. The duo combined for 16 of the Tigers’ 20 points in the third quarter. Noah Feyereisen scored eight points, while Trace Cerney, Bryston Goehring and Braden Goehring scored six points each. Albers and Feyereisen led on the boards with five rebounds each.
“The starters played solid and the players off the bench gave us excellent minutes,” said Knudson.
While Ellendale outrebounded the Tigers 22-15, the Tigers forced 14 Cardinal turnovers, including picking up eight steals and converting them into 10 points. The Tigers committed just eight turnovers and Ellendale had just one steal.
Austin Molan scored a game-high 28 points to lead Ellendale, but scored 17 before the intermission. Hunter Thorpe scored 16. Molan and Thorpe had five rebounds each.
The Tigers have three games against longtime rivals this week. They play at Miller on Thursday, host Potter County on Friday and travel to McLaughlin on Tuesday. The varsity tip-off is 8 p.m. for all three games.
The Tigers and Rustlers are playing for the 94th time since they began playing during the 1938-39 season. The Rustlers have won the last six games to open a 50-43 lead in the all-time series. The Rustlers beat the Tigers 70-60 in Mobridge last season. Miller is 2-3 so far this season.
The Tigers and Battlers are playing for the 98th time on Friday. The series began during the 1925-26 season. The Tigers are 64-33 all time in the series, but have won the last three and five of the last six. Potter County won a 66-56 game in Gettysburg last season. The Battlers are off to a 3-2 start this season.
In one of the longest and history-laden rivalries in state basketball history, the Tigers and McLaughlin are playing for the 162nd time. The series began more than 100 years ago, during the 1916-17 season. The Tigers hold an 88-73 lead in the all-time series, but Mustangs swept the regular season then beat the Tigers in the region last year. Before last year, the Tigers had been on a 10-1 streak against the Mustangs.
Mobridge-Pollock (3-4) 11 26 46 62
Ellendale (3-1) 8 26 40 58
Mobridge-Pollock: Reese Cerney 7 3-8 18, Noah Feyereisen 3 2-3 8, Braxton Albers 7 0-1 18, Trace Cerney 3 0-0 6, Bryston Goehring 3 0-0 6, Braden Goehring 2 0-0 6, Totals 25 5-12 62.
Ellendale: Hunter Thorpe 6 0-0 16, Cody Merkel 0 0-0 0, Wyatt Henningson 0 0-0 0, Austin Molan 12 3-4 28, Payton Merkel 0 0-0 0, Chance Durheim 1 0-0 3, Eric Blondo 1 2-2 4, Scott Wagner 3 1-2 7, Totals 23 6-8 58.
3-point field goals: Mobridge-Pollock 7 (Albers 4, Braden Goehring 2, R. Cerney); Ellendale 6 (Thorpe 4, Molan, Durheim). Rebounds: Mobridge-Pollock 15 (Feyereisen 5, Albers 5); Ellendale 22 (Thorpe 5, Molan 5). Steals: Mobridge-Pollock 8 (R. Cerney 4, Bryston Goehring 2); Ellendale 1. Fouls: Mobridge-Pollock 10; Ellendale 10. Turnovers: Mobridge-Pollock 8; Ellendale 14.