Late basket lifts Knights to victory
Keeping it local were the Our Redeemer’s Knights and Surrey Mustangs boys’ basketball teams, who got together for a District 12 showdown at Surrey on Tuesday night. Currently, the Mustangs (5-8 overall, 2-2 Region 6) sit in third place and the Knights (6-6 overall, 2-1 Region 6) are not far behind, sitting in fifth place of the district standings entering the night.
The Knights have turned things around lately, winning four out of their last five games after coming off a four-game losing streak. The Mustangs recently won three in a row but dropped their last game to a tough Bishop Ryan team.
In a game that went back-and-forth throughout the contest, the Knights were lifted by a late Coltan Francis basket to secure a 54-52 road win over the Mustangs.
“It was a crazy game; I take my hat off to Surrey. They are a very big, physical team and we knew that coming in. This is a tough place to win. Once we settled down a bit and the fourth quarter became a grind, our bench came up big and made some plays,” Knights head coach Brock Teets tells The Minot Daily News.
Breaking out a full-court press to begin the game, the Mustangs got a quick boost defensively as they disrupted the Knights flow on offense. The combination of William Mayo, who was strong on the offensive glass and in the post, and Ayden Amundson, provided early offense for the Mustangs. Battling back were the Knights, who got a late burst from a Bryce Vibeto 3-pointer and a Jace Weekley layup to take a 16-15 lead at the end of the opening quarter.
The second quarter would feature both teams showing a more consistent 3-point shot, as Noah Erickson connected from deep to open the scoring for Our Redeemer’s. Amundson of the Mustangs would then show off his rebounding ability by snagging an offensive rebound and laying it in for a score. Mayo would begin heating up in the second frame, as he helped give the Mustangs a 24-22 lead with 4:15 before the break.
Francis of the Knights would answer on the next possession, taking a tough drive to the hoop for a basket, knotting up the contest once again. The Knights would use their momentum to close out strong, getting 3-pointers from Collin Swenson and Vibeto, followed by a steal and layup from Erickson to take a 37-28 lead into the break.
Hoping to flip the script, the Mustangs opened the third quarter on an 11-2 run, energized by Dalton Walker and Mayo. The scoring remained mostly quiet, as the Knights held a 39-35 lead with 3:15 left. Being the opposite of quiet, however, was Mayo who put on a show in the third frame. He would be responsible for six more points in the quarter, bringing the game to a 41-41 tie moving into the final frame.
Adding to his heroic-like performance, Mayo would score the 1000th point of his career to begin the scoring in the fourth quarter. With Weekley giving the Knights a 48-47 lead with 4:34 remaining on a deep shot, this had the makings for a thrilling finish.
Lucas Vollmer of the Mustangs would proceed to erase their deficit by nailing a 3-pointer to give his team a 50-48 lead. With 1:46 to play, just a one-point lead separated the Mustangs from the Knights, as they held a 50-49 advantage. Weekley would once again provide an answer for the Knights, sinking another 3-pointer to give them a 52-50 lead with 1:16 left.
Walker of the Mustangs would tie the game at 52-52 with 11 seconds left, then it was Francis’ time to play hero as he drove and cashed in a layup with 1.5 seconds left on the clock to lift the Knights to a 54-52 victory.
“Coltan is a gamer, he made a big play for us, and that’s just Coltan,” Teets proclaimed regarding the game-winning basket by Francis.
Teets added, “It’s great to play games like this, playing on the road. I like playing teams like this. It puts us in situations that we are going to need during district tournament time. You learn a lot.”
Erickson finished with 13 points to lead the Knights, followed by Jace Weekley with 11, Francis with nine, Swenson with six, Vibeto with six, Eby with four, Wyatt Weekley with three, and Schmidt with two.
Mayo’s 25 points led the way for the Mustangs, followed by nine from Walker, eight from Lucas Vollmer, seven from Amundson, two from Colin Vollmer, and one from Christianson.
Up next, the Knights will head home to host Des Lacs-Burlington at 7 p.m. on Friday. The Mustangs will head to Mohall-Lansford-Sherwood to face the Mavericks at 7:15 p.m. that same night.