Vermillion senior middle Leah Herbster stated it helped that seventh-grader guard Taylor Reuvers is so small. The 5-foot-1 varsity participant, who’s three years youthful than his next-youngest teammates on one among Class A’s youngest groups, can drop so low on protection and maneuver below defenders’ arms when he is on the offensive line.
“No one expects that,” Herbster stated, “and it is exhausting to guard.”
Reuvers, who scored a varsity career-high 12 factors towards Wagner in Saturday’s Hanson women basketball traditional remaining, has been enjoying in highschool out of doors gyms since he was a “little child.” “I feel should you stroll round Vermillion and speak to anyone, no one could be shocked by what he is achieved,” Tanagers head coach Jon Brooks stated. He got here to his first basketball apply this yr with varsity soccer expertise. And it was clear from the second Brooks noticed him try a between-the-legs crossover after bringing him to his first sport with the “just a little nervous(ly)” Tea Space: “The child simply has no concern.”
And because of Saturday’s gorgeous, 53-52 win over the No. 2 Pink Raiders in Mitchell, the Reuvers have by no means misplaced a sport of their varsity profession. That is as a result of he is only one element of one among South Dakota’s most fun youth basketball groups, Vermillion (10-0), which remains to be undefeated. The Tanagers, who completed within the prime 5 final week, look to proceed their climb. With Herbster being the one senior within the beginning lineup this yr, that promotion would not finish with the conclusion of the 2022-23 season.
“Class A is extremely troublesome this yr,” Brooks stated. “It is deep, there’s lots of good groups, and it is simply going to be a battle to get to the state event.”
Her main scorer, sophomore guard Brooke Jensen, was restricted to 6 factors Saturday as Wagner touched her. For Herbster, it isn’t his typical position to steer the workforce, however Herbster “simply hung in there” because the Pink Raiders jammed exhausting within the 2-3 zone. So he made layups and “rolled,” and that felt adequate to search for extra pictures in a 16-point efficiency on 5-of-7 taking pictures.
There are solely so many gamers the Tanagers can flip to. Junior guard Chandler Cleveland lived on the elbow for the Jumpers in a 10-point efficiency on 5-of-7 taking pictures. Guard Kasey Hanson added 9. They had been led by a senior and a seventh-grader supplied a spark because the Reuvers had been fouled within the remaining minute, despatched to the road for 2 pictures, successfully iceing the sport for one among Class A’s greatest upsets. .
“Truthfully, it is enjoyable,” Herbster stated. “They’re all younger, however all of us get alongside rather well. Age is nothing. We’ve a seventh-grader who performs with us and we love him to dying.”
Few groups within the state have a participant like Wolsey-Wessington’s Mallory Miller
Viborg-Hurley head coach Molly Mason needed to look past her squad to arrange. The week earlier than the Cougars confronted Wolsey-Wessington, Mason introduced a boy to apply along with his workforce. Purpose? He’s 6-foot-2. Whenever you’re about to face a participant like Warbirds 6-foot-4 middle Mallory Miller, the least you are able to do to arrange is have a look at that dimension first.
It is a comparable path Viborg-Hurley laid out for Aberdeen Roncalli star middle Madelyn Bragg within the first spherical of final yr’s Class B state event — one other sport the Cougars gained within the Class B state championship. Viborg-Hurley is used to it. However, with Wolsey-Wessington down 72-52 within the sport, the Cougars nonetheless could not restrict Miller.
As a result of, actually, who might? He had 21 factors and 12 rebounds within the sport and added two productive ones. Miller, the tallest participant on the sector towards Viborg-Hurley, additionally had one of the best ball abilities of any participant on Saturday. He moved the ball up the ground like a guard, controlling his velocity whereas making passes within the lane. When he bought a low regular hole, he would bounce an virtually defenseless flip.
There is a motive Miller has gives from Arizona State, Butler, Louisville, Military and others. There is no such thing as a one in Class B that has a participant like Miller. Possibly there isn’t a one within the state. And for that motive, Saturday’s loss should not rule out the Warbirds (7-1) within the Class B state championship race.
Howard wins Class A this yr, exhibiting the competitiveness of Class B
The Howard women basketball gamers acquired one vote in final week’s South Dakota Prep Basketball Media Ballot. one. It appeared foolish after Saturday, when the Tigers topped Class A Mount Vernon/Plankinton with a 53-47 win within the Hanson women basketball traditional. The Titans have struggled at occasions this yr, however they nonetheless have a few of the finest gamers in Class A and are a workforce that may enhance because the season goes on.
Nonetheless, MVP could not maintain off Howard (8-2). Behind 17 from junior guard/ahead Abby Aslesen, 14 from senior ahead Kate Connor and 12 from senior guard/ahead Ryle Rudebusch, the Tigers had some eye-opening performances.
The Tigers have a great mixture of seniors (six of them, all captains) and a few youthful individuals. Though they’re technically ranked thirteenth within the newest media ballot, they’ll doubtless take successful from final weekend. However Howard’s win exhibits simply how robust Class B is that this yr. Mitchell options a few of the best state championship contests within the state this yr, with Class A and Class B women basketball on full show Saturday. Howard is only one instance of a workforce that may hold the dialog going.
Observe Sioux Falls Argus Chief reporter Michael McCleary on Twitter @mikejmccleary.