Logan Sussner splits the MACCRAY defense for two points.

Overtime heartbreaker

Minneota upset bid foiled by MACCRAY in 3A

Minneota’s determined upset bid fell short as the Vikings fell to MACCRAY 77-70 in overtime at the Section 3A-Norh quarterfinals Saturday in Montevideo.

“We played our best basketball at the end of the season and this might have been our best game,” said Minneota Coach Dave Busselman. “But we just didn’t get some shots to fall when we needed them to.” Jacob Citterman led Minneota with 28 points, while Riley Buysse had 12 points, Alex Saltzer nine, Logan Sussner eight, Nolan Boerboom seven, and Cale Sorensen six.

Minneota (15-12) entered the game as the No. 7 seed and was a big underdog after falling to No. 2 MACCRAY 79-49 in their only previous meeting on Jan. 24.

But the Vikings played hard throughout the entire game and started out scorching the nets from all over the court en route to building a 24-11 lead following a three-pointer by Riley Buysse. MACCRAY then slowly whittled the deficit down to one point, 34-33, after a three-pointer by Blake Wadsworth.

Minneota sank a free throw just before half and entered the locker room during intermission clinging to a 35-33 lead. “We knew they were capable of making a run,” said Busselman. “We tried not to change anything and we told the players that they just needed to play smart and not turn the ball over.”

MACCRAY looked as though it would take over the game in the second half, grabbing its first lead since 2-0 when Brady Kienitz hit a bank shot for a 40-38 advantage. But Minneota showed it was also capable of shifting to a higher gear and went on a 7-0 run to grab a 57-47 lead with 8:08 remaining in the game. Jacob Citterman scored six of the seven points during that run. 

And when Wadsworth, MACCRAY’s leading scorer with 24 points, fouled out with 6:29 remaining, it would make things tougher for the Wolverines to rally back again. But Trent Cavaness scored six points inside to move MACCRAY within 64-62. That’s when Minneota’s top rebounder Logan Sussner (11 rebounds) fouled out with 3:01 left in regulation.

MACCRAY eventually took a 68-66 lead after two free throws by Will Asche and one by Cavaness late in regulation. Citterman scored inside on a nifty move with :06 left to send the game into overtime. From there, MACCRAY took over and outscored Minneota 9-2 in the extra session. “Hindsight is 20-20,” said Busselman. “There are some things you look at and might have done differently. We might have tried to rush things a little, but our guys played a very good game and we just didn’t get it done.” The game likely was decided by the team’s effort at the charity stripe, where MACCRAY cashed 22 of 28 free throws, while Minneota made only 14 of 25.

“I told our seniors that you can’t wonder ‘what if this, what if that’,” Busselman said. “You have to accept what happened and move on. I thought our quality of shots was good. But it is what it is. This is high school basketball.” Cavaness finished with 20 points and Kienitz 19 for the Wolverines.

MACCRAY 77, MINNEOTA 70    MACCRAY (2›s, 3›s, FT, Pts) - Brooks Asche 1 2 0-1 8, Will Asche 0 1 3-4 6, Trent Cavaness 7 1 3-4 20, Tommy Hoekstra 0 0 0-0 0, Brady Kienitz 3 1 10-12 19, Payton Kleinhuizen 0 0 0-0 0, Blake Wadsworth 6 2 6-7 24. Totals 17 7 22-28 77.   Minneota (2›s, 3›s, FT, Pts) - Nolan Boerboom 1 1 2-2 7, Riley Buysse 0 3 3-4 12, Jacob Citterman 11 0 6-8 28, A.J. Josephson 0 0 0-0 0, Joey Rybinski 0 0 0-0 0, Alex Saltzer 3 0 3-6 9, Cale Sorensen 3 0 0-2 6, Logan Sussner 4 0 0-3 8. Totals 22 4 14-25 70.        Scoring MACCRAY.....…..33   35   9 - 77 Minneota...……..35   33   2 - 70 Statistics:    SHOOTING: MACCRAY (2’s 17-for-37, 46 percent; 3’s 7-for-23, 30 percent; overall 24-for-60, 40 percent) … Minneota (2’s 22-for-46, 48 percent; 3’s 4-for-10, 40 percent; overall 26-for-56, 46 percent).    REBOUNDING: MACCRAY 30; Minneota 29 (Sussner 11, Saltzer 6, Boerboom 5, Citterman 5, Sorensen 1, Rybinski 1).    TURNOVERS: MACCRAY 10; Minneota 10.    STEALS: MACCRAY 4; Minneota 8 (Saltzer 4, Boerboom 2, Rybiunski 1, Sussner 1).    ASSISTS: MACCRAY 11; Minneota 18 (Buysse 5, Saltzer 4, Boerboom 2, Sorensen 2, Citterman 2, Sussner 2, Rybinski 1).

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