The Argus Leader and USA Today highlights the best boys and girls basketball players of the year with its annual American Family Insurance ALL-USA South Dakota postseason team. See who made the cut below.
Ty Hoglund (player of the year)
Dell Rapids | Senior | 6-3 | Guard
Hoglund, the Argus Leader First Five Player of the Year, electrified the state’s hoops scene with his combination of all-around skills and penchant for delivering in crucial moments. The senior point guard averaged 26.3 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.4 assists and 3.1 steals per game, breaking five program records along the way: career points (1,600), points in a season (604), points in a game (44), career three-pointers (160) and steals (199).
“Ty just took his whole game to another level this season,” said Coach Jason Fersdahl. “He truly stepped into that leadership role. Our team’s success was indicative of how he elevated the level of play.”
The 6-foot-3 point guard will suit up for Dakota Wesleyan next season.
“He is a special player,” Fersdahl said. “But the more important standard he set was for the younger players to follow. Work ethic, sportsmanship, character — all those intangibles that make players a dream to coach. Ty embodied all of those factors.”
Washington | Senior | 6-1 | Guard
The senior point guard’s signature moment came in the waning seconds of the state semifinals against Pierre. Siganos engineered the game-winning shot – a 10 foot jumper in the lane – then stole the inbound pass, drew a foul and iced the game from the free-throw line.
“Like he’s done for so many games, so many years — he just makes plays,” said Coach Craig Nelson. “It was pretty obvious and pretty evident for us what we were going to do — in some form or fashion get the ball in his hands.”
Siganos played an indispensable role in guiding the Warriors to a second consecutive state championship game. On the year he averaged 15.8 points a game (on 52 percent shooting) and connected on 44 percent of three-pointers. He also pitched in four rebounds, 2.5 assists and nearly two steals a game.
“He’s just always been so unselfish,” Nelson said. “We’ve had to beg him to shoot more. He’s content averaging what he does when we know he could be taking twice as many shots.”
No Warrior in program history suited up in more games than Siganos, who will continue his playing career at Concordia-St. Paul in the NSIC.
Watertown | Senior | 6-0 | Guard
Another example of the state’s many riches at point guard, Davis commanded tons of attention from opposing defenses. When teams sent extra help, the 6-foot senior found the open man.
“Nate trusted his teammates a bit more this year. He did a better job of getting others involved, which made life easier for him most of the year,” Norberg said. “Teams couldn’t focus on him as much when he was creating better shots for his teammates.”
This season, Davis averaged 16 points, four rebounds, five assists and three steals per game in leading the Arrows to a 15-5 regular season record.
“If defenders crowded him on the perimeter, he was able to get into the paint off the dribble. If defenders played him off a bit, he would pull up for his shot,” said Coach Brian Norberg. “Combine that with his ability to create in the open court and he was a very tough cover.”
Irene-Wakonda | Senior | 6-6 | Guard/forward
The Northern State basketball recruit did it all for the runner-up Eagles, averaging a double-double with 20.7 points and 10.8 rebounds per game. If not for younger brother Trey, King would also be the team’s leader in assists.
“He made our team go. Kids looked to him to lead,” said head coach and father, Mike King. “We needed a basket, he had the ball. He has been in this position since he was a sophomore. He is a once in a lifetime player for a coach.”
At 6-foot-6, King has an impressive inside game and shot 62 percent from the field – but he wasn’t shy stepping out and shooting 3s. King hit 66-of-154 treys – good for 43 percent.
King has been known to set up open gyms with teammates and even run basketball camps for kids. As Mike King put it, “He lives for basketball.”
“He provides motivation and drive for the younger players,” Mike King said. “He runs camps for the young at no benefit to him. He always has time for everyone, young and old.”
Sioux Falls Christian | Senior | 6-5 | Forward
The best player on arguably the state’s best overall team, Barkema delivered all season long and in the biggest moments.
Barkema’s late-game free-throws sealed the Chargers’ Region 3A championship against Dell Rapids, and the senior forward didn’t stop until the team hoisted a state title. Barkema turned in 23 points, five assists and six blocks in a semifinal win over Chamberlain before adding 19 points, 10 rebounds and three assists in the championship win over St. Thomas More.
“He could have had more gaudy numbers, but on our team we had such good balance and depth, so Chad didn’t have to take 25 shots a night,” said Coach Mike Schouten. “He was really good at finding the open teammate. I think if he’d wanted to, he could have scored 20 a night.”
On the season, Barkema averaged 16.4 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.2 steals a game. Those numbers are good, but don’t tell the whole story.
“Some of our locker room talks before games, Chad would step up and say something that would really resonate with the team,” Schouten said. “Some of those things maybe go a little bit unnoticed, but were huge in the success of our team.”
Pierre T.F. Riggs | Senior | 6-4 | Forward
Basketball isn’t even Kaiser’s best sport – he’s headed to Vermillion in the fall to play football – but the Pierre senior was still invaluable to his team. At 6-foot-5 and with plenty of athleticism to spare, Kaiser obviously did a lot of work inside.
He averaged 17.1 points and 8.2 rebounds a game, but his relentless motor also led to 39 steals and 32 blocked shots. Kaiser also had no trouble locating the open player and tacked on 2.4 assists per contest.
“Brevin has always had a great competitive fire. It’s not a surprise that he became our school’s all-time leading rebounder, because his motor keeps going continually,” said Coach Terry Becker. “We always felt like we had a chance to win because he competes hard and perseveres every night.”
Rapid City Stevens | Junior | 5-11 | Guard
Archambault did a lot of the heavy lifting for the Raiders, who returned to state and powered through to a third-place finish. The steady guard wore many hats for Stevens, evidenced by his 16.3 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.5 steals per game this season.
“He can make other guys on the team better, and in particular over the last month that’s what he was doing,” said Coach Chris Stoebner, alluding to the team’s 7-1 finish to the season. “Not only was he creating his own shot – and shooting the heck out of the basketball — but he really started getting other guys involved.”
The junior point guard developed a more confident long range stroke as the season progressed. Stoebner said that Archambault connected on over 50 percent of his 3-pointers over the last month of the season. For the year, he connected on 71-of-170 treys (41.8 percent).
Warner | Senior | 6-10 | Center
The Monarchs won their first state championship in 22 years and leaned heavily on their 6-foot-10 center. Rogers finished the year with 14 points and seven rebounds a game, and was even more impactful as a shot-blocker, tallying 89.
“If players did get around us and get to the rim, Mike either blocked their shots or made them alter their shot,” said Coach Derek Hoellein. “He made it very difficult for people to score against us.”
The Warner senior was also the team’s spark plug.
“Mike had numerous dunks on the season – even four in one game,” Hoellein said. “When Mike would dunk, it would just take our team energy to the next level and our Monarch fans enjoyed it as well.”
Rogers surpassed 1,000 career points in the state ‘B’ championship game, where he had 14 points, 11 rebounds, four blocks and two assists in the Monarchs’ 60-43 win over Irene-Wakonda.
Roosevelt | Senior | 6-5 | Forward
Unquestionably the state’s most dominant rebounder, Teichmeier took a big step forward in his senior season. His offensive skills continue to evolve – he averaged 17 points a game and even stepped out to go 20-for-49 from 3-point range, good for 41 percent – but on defense he’s already a proven commodity. Teichmeier’s 13 rebounds per game and ability to block shots made him a valuable piece for the Riders.
“We played him twice, and he might have been the best post player we played against all year,” said Rapid City Stevens coach Chris Stoebner. “Just tenacious off the boards, long and athletic. He was one of those kids where you know what you’re going to get — he’s a double-double guy.”
Next year, Teichmeier will suit up for the University of Sioux Falls.
Flandreau | Sophomore | 6-4 | Guard
When everybody knows you’re going to try to score, and they can’t stop you, odds are you’re a great player. That was Dylan LeBrun last season. The talented Flandreau sophomore averaged 21.7 points a game – hitting 54 percent from the field, rare for a guard – to go with a 42 percent mark from beyond the arc. What’s more, he tacked on 7.3 rebounds a game.
“I’d say the best words to describe him are, ‘Crazy efficient,’” said Coach Brendan Sheppard. “And everything is off the dribble and contested. He’s not getting leak out easy buckets. Every basket he made, the defense was set, and it’s not like there were a bunch of other big-time options on our team – it was him.”
Ciara Duffy (Player of the year)
St. Thomas More | Senior | 6-1 | Forward
The Argus Leader First Five Player of the Year was like a Swiss Army Knife for a talented Cavaliers squad that capped a third straight Class A state title. Simply put, there wasn’t anything she couldn’t do.
Duffy’s combination of length, strength, athleticism and smarts was a recipe for mismatches and her production backed it up. Duffy averaged 19.1 points, 6.3 rebounds, two assists and 2.7 steals per game this season and averaged a state tournament high 23.3 points a game (on an incredible 61 percent shooting).
“Ciara is probably one of the most versatile players I’ve ever had,” said Coach Brandon Kandolin. “With her size and strength, and ability to play insie and outside, it just made her that more lethal. It caused mismatches everywhere, and with her willingness to get better, she could defend anybody. It didn’t matter if it was a small, quick person or a big inside — she wanted to take on that challenge.”
Next season Duffy will join older sister, Caitlin Duffy, at the University of South Dakota.
Sanborn Central/Woonsocket | Junior | 6-2 | Guard/forward
Selland unsurprisingly lands on the First Five after being the lone sophomore on last year’s squad. At 6-foot-2, Selland doesn’t just do work near the basket — she’s the ultimate package. This season she averaged 23.8 points a game in spite of constant double (and triple) team attention. Selland also tacked on 8.4 rebounds, 3.8 assists, 3.1 steals and 2.3 blocks per game.
At the state tournament, Selland scored 34 points — hitting 5-of-9 3-pointers — and added 14 rebounds to lead the Blackhawks past Avon 48-42 in overtime for a third-place finish.
Selland’s older sister, Shelby — a First Five honoree in 2014 — plays for Augustana. Myah appears destined for the Division I ranks, and should draw major instance from around the region. By the time she graduates, she’ll have over 2,000 points, 900 rebounds and 500 assists.
Washington | Senior | 6-0 | Forward
Goodhope’s senior season cemented her status as a great all-around player. When it came to attacking the basket, Goodhope — a North Dakota State basketball recruit — might have been the state’s very best.
“Anna’s size and athleticism is a very unique combination,” said Coach Jamie Parish. “She can put the ball on the floor and is then able to raise up over several smaller defenders. She caused defensive mismatches for opponents.”
Goodhope led the runner-up Warriors, who fell just short of a third straight Class AA championship, with 16.4 points and 6.6 rebounds per game. A threat from inside and out, Goodhope shot 40 percent from the field (94 for 233) and was even more efficient from long range — making good on 41 percent of attempts. In the title game against Aberdeen Central, she finished with 28 points, six rebounds and three assists.
“At a young age, Anna stood out as a player with great potential. I deliberately use the word potential because I want it to be very clear that results you saw were not easy for Anna to achieve,” Parish said. “It took a great deal of hard work, dedication, and willingness to be coached on Anna’s part to get where she is today.”
Aberdeen Central | Senior | 5-9 | Guard/forward
Kusler was instrumental in the Golden Eagles’ quest for their first state title, even if she never settled into an exact position. The Aberdeen Central senior took the point, attacked inside, slid out to the wing and had a knack for earning extra opportunities at the free-throw line. Kusler did it all.
“Brianna is the ultimate competitor,” said Coach Dawn Seiler. “She is always the hardest worker and her leadership skills make her teammates try to get to her level.”
Kusler averaged 15.3 points a game on an efficient 52 percent shooting from the field, and pitched in an additional eight rebounds, three assists and three steals per contest.
One of Kusler’s signature moments this season came in the state semifinal against O’Gorman. A hard fall Kusler’s face bloodied. After trainers put on a bandaid, Kusler leapt over the line of folding chairs next to the court and played out the remaining two minutes of the half.
“The trainers wanted to stitch up her chin right away, but she told them they would have to wait until halftime,” Seiler said. “The trainers put in three stitches over halftime and she was ready to go. She has always been physically strong, but her mental toughness is extraordinary.”
Lincoln | Junior | 6-0 | Guard/forward
Brecht earned a reputation as a dangerous shooter during her sophomore campaign, and took her game to new levels as a junior. Brecht battled her way to the basket and often earned opportunities at the line — where she went 138-for-162, good for 85 percent. Add in range from deep and a crisp jump shot, and it’s easy to see why Brecht was a headache for opposing defenses.
“The only word that keeps popping into my head when thinking about her progress is ‘proflific,’” said Coach Matt Daly. “She’s a prolific scorer. Had we made the state tournament I think more people would compare her junior year to that of Macy Miller because of her ability to put points on the board quickly.
Brecht led Class AA in scoring with 23.9 points a game — only Pine Ridge’s Shaylene Richards (25.2 ppg), in Class A, posted more. The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay commit will be back to lead the Patriots next season.
“I don’t think we’ve even scratched the surface with Anna,” Daly said. “But I really think the element that separates herself from others is her overwhelming confidence as a spot-up jump shooter.”
Aberdeen Central | Sophomore | 6-0 | Forward
For as good as Kusler was all season for the state champion Golden Eagles, Burckhard was the team’s rock inside. Burckhard led Aberdeen in points (17.4), rebounds (10) and blocks (2) per game, and her combination of back-to-the-basket moves and finishing ability led to 62 percent shooting from the field.
That Burckhard is only a sophomore – and a young one at that, she won’t turn 16 until this summer – demonstrates her ability.
“Paiton is a great athlete,” said Coach Dawn Seiler. “She loves to play and is eager to expand her game beyond playing with her back to the basket. She is a good shooter and ball-handler, so combined with her ambition of playing outside of the paint, I am sure she will be quite versatile.”
With two years left in an already bright career, the sky is the limit for Burckhard. Her parents, Kevin Burckhard and Chris (Swanhorst) Burckhard, were Aberdeen standouts who went on to decorated careers at Northern State.
McCook Central/Montrose | Sophomore | 6-1 | Center/forward
Efficient on the offensive end, tenacious on defense and confident enough to handle the ball like a guard. And, just a sophomore. That’s Morgan Koepsell. The 6-foot-1 forward paced the Fighting Cougars this season with 21.4 points (on 57 percent shooting), 9.1 rebounds, two assists and a hardy 5.6 blocks per game.
“Morgan is a very versatile player,” said Coach Doug Durfee. “She can score in a lot of ways. She gets a majority of her point sdown low, but she is also a very good mid-range shooter and even stepped back and hit a few 3s this year.”
Whether the Fighting Cougars needed a big shot or stop, or just to break a defense’s press, Koepsell was called upon, and more often than not, she delivered.
“She has worked very hard to get where she is and I believe her ceiling is as high as she wants it to be,” Durfee said.
Viborg-Hurley | Senior | 5-8 | Guard/forward
The Augustana recruit led the Cougars with 23.2 points, 9.4 rebounds, 4.4 assists and 3.6 blocks a game and surpassed the 2,000-point career scoring mark.
Hora also has range to her attack. In six varsity seasons in Viborg-Hurley she’s averaged 38 percent from beyond the arc, and this season Hora connected on 50-of-130 from 3-point range – good for an astounding 48 percent.
“Playing point guard on the varsity in seven really helped her to learn the game at a young age,” said Coach Bill Hansen. “Over time, playing that position helped her develop a better understanding and maturity for the game.”
One of Hora’s season highlights came in posting 33 points in a win against Sanborn Central/Woonsocket, while fellow first-team all-state selection Myah Selland dropped 34.
“Abby was a true leader and positive teammate for the Viborg-Hurley program,” Hansen said.
Washington | Senior | 6-0 | Center
Arrington’s combination of strength, toughness and post polish helped make her a force inside for the Warriors over four years of varsity action. This season, Arrington averaged 13.7 points and 5.3 rebounds per game as part of a deep and balanced Warriors attack.
The Washington senior presented serious matchup pains in the post and was one of the team’s unquestioned leaders. Arrington was a major player for Warrior teams that earned three straight state championship appearances.
“Syd’s impact on the program was great on the floor but perhaps even greater off the floor,” said Coach Jamie Parish. “She was a great leader and did a great job of forming relationships with our younger players. … She was a true Warrior in every sense of the word.”
Mt. Vernon/Plankinton | Senior | 6-3 | Center
Bultsma is arguably the state’s best rim defender. At 6-foot-3, Bultsma has made life near the basket difficult for opposing defenses. Bultsma registered 82 blocks this season to go with 8.1 rebounds a game.
“Megan dominates the game defensively unlike anyone else I’ve ever seen,” said Coach Bill Marquardt, “and her offensive improvement since last year is immense. She forces changes to the game plan for every team we play, is constantly faced with double and triple teams, yet always keeps her composure and focus.”
The South Dakota State recruit averaged 17 points a game – on an impressively efficient 73 percent shooting.
“Megan has great anticipation of when and where to post up and to cut,” said Coach Bill Marquardt. “She never takes a bad shot, and most of the good ones she gets.”