Blue Jays soar over Knights

Garrick Hodge/MDN Stanley's Abby Iverson (23) drives past Our Redeemer's guard Karlee Zablotney at a girls high school basketball game Thursday in Minot.

A fast start by the Stanley girls basketball team was all it needed to take down Our Redeemer’s in the final matchup of the ORCS Invite Thursday at the Minot Municipal Auditorium.

The Blue Jays defeated the Knights 65-46.

Stanley couldn’t do anything wrong from the getgo, starting the game on a 10-0 run.

“That was probably one of the best starts we’ve had this season,” Stanley coach Kelly Roemmich said. “We hit shots and just made a lot of plays. I think that really gave us that buffer throughout the game. They came back on us a couple times, but we just switched some things up and kept regaining that lead.”

ORCS guard Tessa Olson finally got the Knights on the board at 5:40 mark in first quarter, reducing the deficit to 10-2. Later, sharpshooter Karolynn Winger knocked down a long-range shot to bring the Knights within six.

Leading 13-7, Stanley guard Taylor Dean increased her team’s lead to nine after drilling a long 3-pointer from the top of the key. A steal on the next possession followed by a layup from Danae Vachal gave the Blue Jays a 18-7 advantage.

Things looked gloomy for the Knights near the end of the first quarter, but Winger hit a desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer after a long feed from Olson with 1.9 seconds left. Stanley led 22-12 after one.

Each team scored seven points in the second quarter, giving the Blue Jays a 29-19 lead at halftime.

The Knights tried to chip away in the third quarter, as a Karlee Zablotney floater made it 37-30 with 2:27 left. ORCS closed the third quarter trailing by the same margin, 41-34.

Seven points was the closest ORCS came in the second half. A three-point play by Stanley’s Abby Iverson made it 44-34 moments into the fourth quarter, quickly ending the Knights’ comeback dreams. Iverson had a layup on the next possession to make it 46-34.

“Those couple of plays were really big from Iverson,” Roemmich said. “That and-one is just huge, and those kinds of plays are hard to stop. I was really impressed with our defensive effort, we had a few lapses, but were really efficient for the most part.”

Iverson had a game-high 22 points, while Dean finished with 12 and Hayley Schmidt chipped in 10 for the Blue Jays. Winger led ORCS with 15, while Tea Boechel recorded 9 and Olson and Zablotney each recorded eight.

Stanley (5-4) is back in action against Bowbells/Burke Central on Tuesday on the road. ORCS (3-3) faces Bishop Ryan Tuesday on the road.

Garrick Hodge covers Minot State athletics, the Minot Minotauros and high school sports. Follow him on Twitter @Garrick_Hodge.