Magi put on a show against St. Mary’s in Pink Night win, 91-61
Even when the Magicians played defense on themselves, they still found ways to score.
After crossing over his defender, Minot High guard Deonte’ Martinez attacked the rim in the second half of the Magi’s home game against Bismarck St. Mary’s on Friday. As expected, the sophomore was met by a big man in the paint.
But this time that big man was his teammate, Caden Johnson. The two collided just a few feet from the rim, but Martinez kept his balance, hung in the air and finished anyways with a silky-smooth floater.
It was that kind of night for the Magi.
The Minot High School boys basketball team (9-5) had little trouble handling Bismarck St. Mary’s (3-13) at home on Friday’s “Pink Night” game. The Magi got production out of everyone who stepped onto the court, as nine different players got on the board en route to the comfortable 91-61 win.
“I thought offensively we were really unselfish,” MHS head coach Dean Winczewski said. “It becomes contagious – it really does in basketball – once you see someone hitting shots. That basket begins to grow, and it got pretty big for us tonight.”
The Magi blitz attacked St. Mary’s from the jump, as junior Jaxon Gunville got the night started with a pair of three-point bombs. Martinez and junior Tucker Olson each piled on a three of their own, and junior Caden Johnson added three buckets from down low in what was a 20-0 start to the contest.
The explosive start fueled the Magi to build their lead and go into halftime with an imposing 48-25 advantage.
“I think (the run) allowed us a lot of opportunities to just run the floor freely,” Martinez said. “It opened up a lot of open looks for our shooters, and we did a good job of knocking them down.”
Unfazed by the deficit, the Saints kept shooting in the second half and found their offensive rhythm. St. Mary’s went 14-for-25 (56%) from the field in the second half and totaled 36 points to keep pace with the red-hot Magi.
“(St. Mary’s) has a talented group of kids,” Winczewski said. “They battle and they fight every possession. We were able to get up early and work off that, but they’re going to sneak up on teams. They play hard.”
Despite the uptick in shooting efficiency, the Saints still had no answer on defense for Minot’s deadly long-range shooting. The Magi tacked on another eight triples and finished 16-for-24 (66.7%) from deep to secure the 91-61 victory.
Martinez and Olson each totaled a game-high 17 points. Senior Alex Schimke posted 11 points to go along with six boards, while Johnson racked up 10 points and five boards.
The Magi had no shortage of offense as Gunville, junior Derry Lentz, senior Jacob Schiele and junior Easton Larson each fell just shy of double-digit scoring with eights points as well.
Regardless of who had the ball, the Magi displayed their trust in each other and saw it pay off Friday night.
“It’s a good environment,” Martinez said. “We’re all rooting for each other, and I think that’s what makes us a great team. We all love seeing each others succeed.”
Next up for the Magi is a road game against Turtle Mountain Community High School on Monday at 7:30 p.m.
Justin Martinez covers Minot High School sports and Class B high school sports. Follow him on Twitter @JTheSportsDude.