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Seth Friesz and the Chamberlain Cubs are the No. 2 seed in the upcoming Class A boys state tournament
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Is it finally ok to start talking about Chamberlain as a legitimate title contender
Mar 8, 2017

By Rich Winter

I've had a little burr under my saddle all season in regards to the Chamberlain Cubs boys basketball season and said burr was firmly planted on or around Dec. 1. Having finished 4th in 2016 and with a returning cast that played some elite basketball this summer, and with a group of big guys that exploded on the gridiron this fall, I dared utter the words, "Chamberalin is my pick to win the Class A state title."

 

Of which I promptly got booed to the sidelines with  the typical reverberation of 'oh, they're not that good or they aren't big enough or they aren't deep enough.' Seemed like the South Dakota pollsters kinda had some doubts and reservations about the Cubs failing to rank Chamberlain until very late in the season. 

 

Well, it's the middle of March and while the 'expert' and 'officianados' may have HAMMERED on the Cubs all season, Chamberlain, 19-3 will be the No. 2 seeded team in Class A when the state tournament tips in Sioux Falls next Thursday. 

 

The Cubs punched that ticket for a return trip to the A's with a 71-57 win over Crow Creek in Tuesday's Sweet-16 contest played in Pierre. 

 

It was the court savvy duo of 1000 points scorers, Seth Friesz and Tiegen Priebe who dropped a combined 50 on Crow Creek with Friez netting 30 of those points on 11-23 shooting. 

 

But, it's Chamberlain and the Cubs get contributions from different guys in different areas on different nights

Dodge Knippling added 11 points but delivered a monstrous 14 rebounds. 

 

On Tuesday, Chamberlain looked like a returning state team. Pulling ahead late after a terrific effort from Crow Creek and manning up at the line, converting 20-23 free-throws in the win.

 

Only three losses for Nelson's group this year: Dell Rapids, Sioux Falls Christian and Madison. Christian and Madison are in the A tournament and all three of those losses were on the road.

 

Depite the pollsters, and others, ignoring the Cubs, there they are, smack dab in the middle of the conversation.

 

A few props from Crow Creek coach Billy Joe Sazue on Facebook today after his Chieftains took a tough loss.

 

"You gotta tip your hat to Chamberlain. They've been great all year. Good luck to them at State."

 

Ahhhh state, with Sioux Valley getting knocked out of the tournament last night by an upstart Dakota Valley team suddenly the A tournament is filled with some top-heavy favorites and some interesting in-the-weeds teams like Dakota Valley and Tri-Valley. 

 

Visited with Mount Vernon/Plank coach Eric Denning this afternoon and he was in awe of the depth of this year's tournament calling it the deepest Class A field he's ever seen, and a field loaded with eight teams, of which Dennings says any of those eight teams could win the title.

 

All that fodder aside, I picked em in December, and I'm sticking to my guns....Go CUBS!


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