In the first half of the opening game of the North Dakota Region 2 boys basketball tournament, Thompson 6-foot-6 forward Hayden Overby went up for a dunk and was stuffed by the rim.
"I didn't get quite high enough," Overby said. "That happens."
To start the second half, Overby went high again and this time successfully threw down the jam.
Overby's two plays summarized the overall play of the Tommies against North Border, too: Shaky in the first half, flashy in the second half.
No. 1 Thompson waded through early struggles before taking off to a convincing 67-47 win over No. 9 North Border in the quarterfinals of the region tournament Monday afternoon at Betty Engelstad Sioux Center.
"We came out slow and North Border played great defense," Overby said. "We found a way around it and played a lot better in the second half."
Thompson (21-1 and ranked No. 1 in the state) plays the winner of Larimore and Hatton-Northwood at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the semifinals
The Eagles, who were ranked ninth in the region and had to beat Mayville-Portland-Clifford-Galesburg to reach the Betty, hung around late in the second quarter and even led 14-13 after the first quarter.
North Border freshman Kyler Moore scored five consecutive points, including a shot clock-beating 3-pointer to cut the Thompson lead to 24-23 in the second quarter.
But the Tommies cranked up the fullcourt defensive pressure and closed the half on an 8-0 to spread the lead out to 32-23 at halftime.
"Defensively, I thought we were really good in the second half," Thompson coach Brandy George said. "I thought (North Border) was doing a really good job of preventing us from getting the ball inside. Their 2-3 zone was really good but Marcus (Hughes) hit a couple of threes and that opened it up a bit."
Thompson was led by Overby's 16 points, while Hughes added 12 and Cadyn Schwabe had 12.
North Border was paced by Matthew Greendahl's 12 points. He was the only Eagle in double figures.
North Border 47
NOR 14 9 11 13 -- 47
THO 13 19 18 17 -- 67
North Border-Jaxen Johnson 6, Jaden Lee 9, Cole Hipsher 5, Reed Karel 4, Colton Willits 2, Jacob Johnson 4, Kyler Moore 5, Matthew Greendahl 12
Thompson-Marcus Hughes 13, Cadyn Schwabe 12, Jacob Dick 6, Pierce Cooper 5, Clay Odenbach 4, Nicholas Reck 3, Chance Danner 8, Hayden Overby 16