RAPID CITY – Sami Slaughter scored a game-high 16 points and added 11 rebounds to help No. 1 Harrisburg roll past No. 8 Pierre in the Class AA girls quarterfinals.
Slaughter knocked down 6 of 8 shots from the field and tacked on six assists, three blocks and a steal in a winning effort. She was joined in double figures by Jeniah Ugofsky who finished with 15 points, two assists, three steals and a block, and Sydney Halling who tallied 11 points and a block.
Harrisburg was on fire in the first half, knocking down 14 of 25 shots as it built a 36-20 halftime lead.
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“We knew it was going to be battle right from the jump,” coach Nick Mayer said. “Our kids came out and did a really nice job. We were efficient offensively, got out to an early lead and just sort of locked down defensively from there. It was a nice team effort.”
Pierre had hung with Harrisburg in their regular-season meetings, but that only served to further motivate the Tigers, who entered Thursday’s game with a razor-sharp focus.
“We know that Pierre’s a very good team, a very dangerous team,” Mayer said. “They can shoot the ball so well and their post kids do a nice job inside. They killed us on the rebounding at home and at Pierre, but tonight we out-rebounded them by 20 (43-23). That was huge.”
Maddie Reineke and Emily Mikkelsen led the Govs with eight points apiece, with Reineke also picking up three steals. Erika Stout tallied seven points, an assist, a block, and a steal.
As a team, Pierre shot just 28 percent from the field.
“It was one of those things where our kids really bought into those two weeks of practice that we had,” Mayer said. “Dana Bigge did a great job with our kids, getting them to buy into contesting shots and defensive rebounding and a lot of those things that I think we incorporated into that game.”
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