July 14, 2024

Knights pick up pair of WCC wins over Benson, Montevideo

Photo by Tammie Olson Photography Adam Lohse works for the pin for the Knights in the Benson quadrangular Jan. 11.

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Sam Peterson

Grant County Herald

The West Central Area boys basketball team improved to 10-2 and 5-1 in the West Central Conference with two wins last week. First, the Knights made the trip to Benson to take on the Braves and easily handled Benson with an 86-53 win. Next, the Knights were locked in a tough battle at home against Montevideo Jan. 11. WCA fought their way to a 53-49 win over the Thunderhawks to keep them at the top of the WCC standings with a 5-1 conference record.

WCA 86

Benson 53

The WCA Knights scored 55 first half points taking a 55-22 lead in Benson Jan. 9 and hit 12 threes in the game by seven different players enroute to an 86-53 win.

“Benson is an up and coming team that is much improved. They were 5-4 coming into the game and they are very big and have multiple good shooters. Therefore, we were happy with the focus our guys came out with. We had a balanced effort in all areas and the coaching staff really thought we played team basketball with teammates screening for each other and many assisted baskets sharing the ball,” head coach Kraig Hunter said.

The Knights balanced scoring was led by Marshall Dewey with 16, Bryce Kjesbo added 15, Mitch Dewey had 14, Sam Hanson scored 10, Cash Nelson finished with nine, Cam Anderson had eight, Ben Bye chipped in with seven, Carter Kjesbo tallied three, Owen Sanstead and Dane Anderson both had two.  

Nasir Dotts led the rebounding effort with nine, Bye grabbed seven, Anderson added six and Hanson had four. Anderson had eight assists and Dotts added six. “Pretty solid guard play by our two point guards Cam and Nasir.  Between the two of them they had 14 assists and 0 turnovers. They delivered the ball to guys in good scoring positions,” Kraig Hunter said.

Hanson also had 5 assists and 2 steals and Mitch Dewey led the team in steals with 3.

WCA 53

Montevideo 49

The WCA Knights hosted a very good AA Montevideo Thunderhawk team on Thursday night and worked hard for a 53-49 win. 

Montevideo took a 14-2 lead and the Knights battled back to lead 26-24 at the half. 

There were several lead changes throughout the second half, the Knights biggest lead was four. Montevideo got to within 45-44, but the Knights finished it off with several good defensive possessions.  

“We pride our program on defense because it still gives you a chance to win on nights when things aren’t clicking on offense and we did that tonight. We didn’t play very well on offense. Have to clean up some turnovers, better finishing and execution things.  But our coaching staff was really proud of our effort and how our kids competed all night.  Getting stops and rebounding better helped us take the lead and keep the lead down the stretch of the second half,” head coach Kraig Hunter said.

The leaders for the Knights were Ben Bye with 14 points, eight rebounds and three steals; Bryce Kjesbo had 13 points and four rebounds, Mitch Dewey added 10 points and four rebounds, Cam Anderson chipped in with seven points, four rebounds and four assists, Sam Hanson had seven points, three rebounds and took three charges, Nas Dotts had two points and four rebounds.

“Sam Hanson came in and changed the game. We were down 14-2 and he came in and sparked us with a couple of baskets and a 3-pointer and then was all over on defense the entire night.  Marshall Dewey also played well off the bench. Even though he didn’t score, he contributed several key plays to our win,” head coach Hunter said.

The Knights 10-2 hosted Brandon-Evansville at home Jan. 15 and also hosted Sauk Centre Jan. 16. The next game on the schedule for the Knights will be Friday, January 19 when they will host BOLD in Barrett.

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