Posted On: 01/8/18 2:57 PM
|DLB 5-3 overall record, 0-0 in District 12|
|@ Parshall 81-70||vs. Stanley 65-53|
|vs. Beulah 64-60||vs. Velva 64-62|
|@ Rugby 59-58||vs. Bottineau 63-62|
|vs. Hazen 65-57|
|Neutral Court vs. Carrington 79-69|
DLB started the season with a strong test. There weren’t any easy warm-up games. DLB’s early season schedule matched them up with a lot of region title contenders around the state. They’ve played teams ranked in the top 10 of the Class B state media poll and teams who are always in the mix come March.
First, they started with the No.1-ranked team in the state but didn’t have starting point guard Eddie White Bear. Stanley entered the game as the favorite and topped DLB by 12 points. Then DLB’s next game ended the same way.
Velva (6-1) topped DLB 64-62. DLB was in a 0-2 rut, without White Bear. And things didn’t look good for them. But DLB has put their pieces together since the Velva loss with a 5-1 showing, their only loss during their hot streak was to 7-1 to Bottineau.
DLB has wins vs. Carrington, Beulah, Rugby Hazen and Parshall this season. A big part of those wins has been senior guard Arron Grandy, senior forward Josh Knutson and White Bear, a senior point guard.
Grandy and Knutson bring toughness and intensity to the team. White Bear is the smooth point guard who strings the offensive attack altogether. Knutson will typically grab the assignment of defending the other team’s best player. He see’s defense as one of his strengths.
“Best part of my game is my defense that helps my offense out by getting steals and going up the court. Then my ability to jump and score in the post are the best parts of my game.” Knutson said.
Knutson will have to improve his shooting and recognize when the lane is open and closed for DLB to reach their full potential.
Overall, Knutson thinks the team can get far this season if they learn to handle pressure better.
“Just calm down a little bit when we have the ball. Sometimes we get a little uneasy and try to just pass it out of a bad situation and it gets stolen. If we do that I think it’ll help us a lot,” Knutson said.
Grandy is the team’s best scorer and excels at shooting. Grandy said the team has been defending well and paying attention to detail.
“We’ve been defending really well actually, just working hard every game and playing like we have nothing to lose,” Grandy said. “Just all the little things.”
“I think we just have to keep doing what we are doing right now. I’m pretty happy with the way we are playing right now. Just play as a team always.”
If Grandy can stay active without the ball it adds another dimension to DLB’s offense that’s hard to game plan for. If Grandy’s moving he’ll get more open looks from 3.
White Bear is another major offensive ingredient for DLB. He was the missing ingredient in all of DLB’s losses. Having White Bear back means everyone is getting better shots and DLB’s offense is more potent. White Bear said it feels great to be back on the court.
“It feels great being out with the team again. I’ve been practicing with them a lot and it just feels good to be back,” White Bear said.
White Bear’s impact on the game makes DLB much more dangerous in the dribble and drive action they run. White Bear said the offense is clicking right now.
“I think we are doing really well with 3-point shooting right now. Me driving kicking and then them hitting, ” White Bear said. “I think I’m doing well with court vision and just passing the ball. Getting into the lane.”
If White Bear starts hitting his pull-ups jumpers it’ll cause defenses even more worries.
DLB has shown they can play with anybody in the state. Class B fans are wondering if DLB can beat anyone in the state. DLB’s senior leaders say they’ll be fine as long as they work hard, play defense and improve their shot selection.