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Posted On: 03/13/19 10:31 AM
**(Photo: Briana Sanchez / Argus Leader)**
State contenders need to build momentum in February and heading into March, which is why PHD has compiled a list of teams that are hitting their stride at the right time.
The Orioles had a rocky start to the season sitting at 3-3 after a loss to St. Paul Central, Minn at the Sanford Pentagon. That didn’t faze them as they rolled off 10 straight wins only to fall to No. 1 Tea Area on a buzzer beater. Overall, Lennox finished the season out winning 12-out-of-14 games to end the regular season at 15-5. Four-of-five starters score in double figures on a nightly basis on 49 percent shooting as a team. With Josh Arlt, Quincy Ihnen and Will Daugherty leading the way for Lennox they will be hard to beat in Sioux Falls.
After losing pretty much all of their scoring from last season as well as their successful coach, the Madison Bulldogs shocked everyone earning another spot at the state tournament. The Bulldogs had an up and down season that included a 78-43 dismantling against No. 1 Tea Area in early January. Since then Madison has only lost four times with an average margin of defeat of five points. The Bulldogs won a tightly contested game against a tough Dakota Valley team and then gave No. 2 Sioux Falls Christian a scare losing 65-61 to end the regular season. Nic Comes (12.9 ppg) is one of the returning players that has provided a much-needed spark in the second half of the season. Doyle Brown (9.9 ppg) and Cody Brown (11 ppg) have also contributed much-needed scoring for the Bulldogs down the stretch.
The Quarriers didn’t have the regular season they were hoping but were able to get hot at the right time to earn a trip to the state tournament. Dell Rapids comes to Sioux Falls with a five-game win-streak after they avenged a loss earlier in the season to Parker defeating them 59-31 in the SoDak 16. The Quarriers usually have the height advantage with 6’9 Logan Heim, the senior has averaged 8.2 ppg and 11.1 boards a game this season. He’s been a force on the defensive side blocking 28 shots and 19 steals. Colin and Connor Rentz have been the energizer bunny for the Quarriers on the season. Colin (10.5 ppg) and Connor (10.8) have been great on the defensive end as well as the offensive side. Colin has been dishing out some nasty dimes over the season collecting a team-high 71 assists. Their four-guard lineup is always a challenge for teams that prefer half-court offense rather than fast break.
The Thorpes had one of the multiple 20-plus margins of victories in the SoDak 16 which is no surprise to their opponents this past season. Pine Ridge is one of this years ‘Dark Horse’ teams. They averaged just over 60 points a game on 57 percent shooting from the field. Corey Brown and Halen Bad Bear lead the charge on the offensive side of things. Bad Bear leads the team with 19.9 points a game while Brown chips in with 11.4. Charles Schrader leads the team with 4.3 assists and also puts up 9 points a game.