No. 1 Thompson upends No. 3 Hillsboro-CV, 43-36

HILLSBORO, N.D. -- Finding a parking spot and an open seat Friday night was just as difficult as finding an open look from the floor once the game started.

Thompson's Chance Danner looks toward a teammate as Hillsboro-Central Valley's Jacob Heinitz defends during their game Friday in Hillsboro. Korrie Wenzel, Grand Forks Herald

HILLSBORO, N.D. -- Finding a parking spot and an open seat Friday night was just as difficult as finding an open look from the floor once the game started.

No. 1 Thompson’s lengthy defenders smothered the No. 3 Hillsboro-Central Valley shooters, holding the two-time defending North Dakota Class B state champions to 13 first-half points en route to a 43-36 win in the Hillsboro gym.

“We held a good basketball team to 36 points,” Thompson coach Brandy George said. “We got stops when we needed them and forced them into tough shots.”

Burros junior guard Carson Henningsgard, a first-team all-state selection last season, finished with 16 points -- with 11 of those coming in the second half.

“Henningsgard is one of the best in the state, and he got loose on us a couple of times,” George said. “But most of the time, we were pretty good defensively.”


After a back and forth first quarter, Thompson led the rest of the way but could never fully put away the Burros until late.

Thompson started to build some breathing room in the fourth quarter behind the play of Clay Odenbach, who comes off the bench as the Tommies’ sixth player.

Odenbach, a 6-foot-6 junior, hit a key basket for Thompson midway through the fourth quarter. His reverse lay-up, where he was fouled and completed a three-point play, gave the Tommies a 36-28 lead with 4:25 remaining.

Odenbach, the fill-in hero of the North Dakota 9-man state championship game after coming in at quarterback and leading the Tommies to three second-half touchdown drives, finished with 10 points.

Odenbach was the only Thompson player in double figures. Marcus Hughes had nine and Hayden Overby finished with eight.

“Good battle between two hard-nosed teams that get after it on the defensive end,” H-CV coach Elliot Rotvold said. “To hold them to 43, I’ll take that most nights against them.”

The Burros would trim the lead to as few as three points from there -- on a pair of Henningsgard free throws to make it 39-36 with 32 seconds left.

But Thompson, who made just 12-for-26 from the foul line, made just enough free throws down the stretch to hang on.


“When you hold team in the 30’s, that’s pretty good,” Odenbach said. “Our defense was working pretty good. Our size really helps.”

Cadyn Schwabe, Thompson’s quarterback in the fall who was injured in the state title game, has yet to play this season. He was dressed against the Burros but didn’t play.

“He was cleared to play today,” George said. “He’s only done non-contact stuff for the past two weeks, so we’ll work him in slowly but that’s going to obviously add to our team. We’re excited to get him back.”


Thompson 43,
Hillsboro-CV 36 THO 9 11 10 13 -- 43

HCV 8 5 13 10 -- 36

Thompson -- Marcus Hughes 9, Jacob Dick 6, Pierce Cooper 7, Clay Odenbach 10, Chance Danner 3, Hayden Overby 8

Hillsboro-Central Valley -- Jacob Heinitz 5, Patrick Limke 3, Carson Henningsgard 16, Oscar Benson 4, Travis Doeden 4, Colton Anderson 2, Landen Reed 2


Miller has covered sports at the Grand Forks Herald since 2004 and was the state sportswriter of the year in 2019 and 2022.

His primary beat is UND football but also reports on a variety of UND sports and local preps.

He can be reached at (701) 780-1121, or on Twitter at @tommillergf.
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