Beulah defeats St. John, Brandt gets 400th win
Full-court presses, double teams and a tweaked left ankle couldn’t stop Chad Morsette Jr.
The Beulah senior showed out against a Saint John team (3-4) that had no answer on Saturday at the Dale Brown Classic, lifting the Miners to a 50-31 victory with a 19-point performance.
“I thought we did a nice job tonight on both ends,” Beulah head coach Jeremy Brandt said. “And it’s nice to have that senior leadership (from Morsette). He’s a consistent player for us that’s going to score, rebound and hustle every night.”
The Miners (4-3) wasted no time jumping out to a 12-4 lead in the first quarter. Morsette led the charge by getting to the rim with ease for six points.
Beulah’s lead grew to 11 with just under 30 seconds remaining in the first half as Morsette finished yet another aggressive take to the rim for his 10th point of the match. But the senior forward hobbled back on defense afterwards, hesitant to put weight on his left ankle.
The Miners took a 25-14 lead into halftime, but fans held their breath as Morsette limped into the locker room.
“I just came down on someones foot after the shot,” Morsette said. “But I knew it was nothing serious right away and I’d be good.”
Sure enough, Morsette came out in the third quarter and went right back to work. The senior recorded another five points to help give the Miners a 40-28 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
The 12-point advantage proved to be enough as Beulah secured the wire-to-wire 50-31 victory despite a one-man push by St. John’s Zack Anderson. The junior totaled 13 of the Woddchucks’ 31 points in the loss.
“(St. John) has some good scorers,” Brandt said. “They’re capable of going on those spurts, so it’s nice to get that cushion and be able to answer whenever they make those runs.”
Morsette added 13 rebounds to his 19 points, while Jonah Larson chipped in 10 points and eight rebounds.
With the win, Brandt earned his 400th coaching victory. The Minot State alum was presented the game ball afterwards by his two kids.
“This is a special place for me, so it’s neat to get (win No. 400) here,” Brandt said. “In the scheme of things it just shows that I’m getting old, but I’ve had a lot of good kids that I’ve had the chance to coach, so it’s a credit to them as much as anything.”
The Miners leave Minot with a 1-1 record in a two-day showcase headlined by some of the top teams in the state. With regional play set to begin, the Miners hope to use this weekend’s experience as a stepping stone to a successful rest of the season.
“(This trip) is really going to help us,” Morsette said. “It’s gotten us prepared for regional play, and I think we’ll be solid this year.”
Justin Martinez covers Minot High School sports and Class B high school sports. Follow him on Twitter @JTheSportsDude.