Lake Region State College men's basketball team one win away from region title game
Royals, who are 15-8 this season, take on North Dakota Science for a berth in the region title game
The college basketball season in North Dakota isn’t over.
For Lake Region State College, a lot remains on the line as the Royals are a win away from playing for the NJCAA Division I Region XIII men’s basketball title.
Lake Region will play at North Dakota Science on Thursday night for a berth in the title game.
The Royals reached the semifinal round of the Region XIII tournament with an 81-73 win over Bismarck State College on Tuesday night.
Lake Region has had a successful season, posting a 15-8 record. The Royals also have won seven in a row.
“It’s been a really good year for us,” said Lake Region coach Jared Marshall, now in his sixth season. “With the limited practices we’ve had and the condensed season, we’re really happy with this team. We’re starting to click at the right time.”
The Royals’ roster has a lot of local flavor as well.
Three starters come from the Red River Valley -- 6-foot-3 freshman guard Carson Henningsgard from Hillsboro-Central Valley, 6-5 freshman guard Ben Hoverson from Grand Forks Central and 6-7 sophomore forward Beau Feltman from Grafton.
Henningsgard is averaging 12 points per game while Hoverson is averaging 9.4 points and Feltman 5.0 points.
“We rely a lot on those kids,” said Marshall, who recently won his 100th game at Lake Region.
Henningsgard is responsible for a lot of the team’s success, added the Lake Region coach.
“He’s a natural leader and guys really respond to him,” said Marshall. “He finds ways to impact the game positively.”
Science comes into the regional semifinal with a 15-6 record. The Wildcats and Lake Region played three times this season, with Science winning twice. Lake Region won the third meeting, 67-55, coming March 7 in Wahpeton.
“It’s going to be a game of contrasting styles,” said Marshall. “They’re one of the top scoring teams in the nation. They want to get up and down the court.
“We’re a top 25 defensive team in the nation. We like to slow it down and grind it out. Wahpeton prefers the game to be in the 80s or 90s and we’d like it in the 60s or 70s.”
Lake Region is a young team this season, with only three sophomores.
The Royals have signed area four players for next season, including Jagger Worley from Langdon-Edmore-Munich, Blayne Anderson from Benson County, Noah Fredrickson from Powers Lake, which reached the North Dakota state Class B tournament this season; and Gage Pollestad of Drayton/Valley-Edinburg.