BISMARCK - New Town coach Orville Drosdal said Lakota-Adams-Edmore simply had the "x-factor" in the teams' matchup Friday.
Freshman Fallyn Freije had 21 points and 20 rebounds as the Raiders (22-5) defeated New Town 55-45 in a consolation semifinal of the Class B state girls basketball tournament at the Bismarck Civic Center.
The inside presence of the 5-foot-11 Freije also eliminated 5-11 New Town freshman center Mia Wilkinson, who was held scoreless after getting 20 points in the Eagles' quarterfinal loss Thursday.
New Town's Jaye Don Two Bears shoots over Lakota-Adams-Edmore's Fallyn Freije in their Class B state tournament consolation game Friday at the Bismarck Civic Center. Freije had 21 points and 20 rebounds to lift the Raiders into today's fifth-place game.
"I thought we had (effort) today," Drosdal said. "They had the x-factor in the big Freije girl. She had 21 and 20. That's tough to overcome and we knew coming into the game that our posts were gonna struggle with our youth and their size and athleticism in there."
L-A-E led by double digits for much of the second half, but New Town (24-2) threatened a couple of times by forcing turnovers and getting easy baskets. Junior Taylor McGrady scored six consecutive points near the end of the third quarter to cut L-A-E's lead to 41-35, but the Raiders quickly pushed the margin back to 12 before New Town scored again.
New Town eventually cut the deficit to eight but got no closer. Whenever New Town threatened, Freije would score a bucket. She also was a calming influence against New Town's pressure, which forced 27 turnovers.
"I know most of (the defenders) don't think I would shoot it from out there or hold it out there," Freije said, "so I do it and it gives our guards a chance to come down the court and get a little break so they don't have to dribble up the court and do it all by themselves."
The Raiders offset their large turnover total by shooting 50 percent and outrebounding New Town 44-31. Timely baskets kept the Eagles at bay.
"We just told ourselves, 'We had them up by that much, we can't just let them back in the game like they did against Shiloh last night,' " Freije said. "If they pressured us and made shots we were gonna be in trouble.
"We just had to get down the court, we had to use every possession because we had to at least get a good shot off, not just dribble down the court and force something up."
New Town entered the state tournament undefeated and its players are now dealing with losing two straight games. Drosdal said his young team will be more battle-tested next season.
"They're handling it OK," Drosdal said. "We hadn't played teams of this quality until we got to this point and we knew that was gonna be a factor with our schedule. We're beefing up our schedule next year - we're playing (Bishop) Ryan, we're playing Thompson. You need to play some quality teams to get you ready for a tournament like this."
The Eagles face Kindred (24-3) at 1 p.m. today in the seventh-place game.
"We're hoping to win," said McGrady, who scored a team-high 10 points. "We're gonna try our hardest, we want to end on a good note and not go out like this."