CSI basketball teams punch tickets to national tournaments
Both teams win Region 18 championships, first time since 2015
RICHFIELD, Utah (KMVT/KSVT) — The College of Southern Idaho basketball teams looked to make history on Saturday. We take you to Richfield, Utah for a recap of the Region 18 Championships.
We begin with the women’s team, hosting Snow College.
Kaitlin Burgess had 22 points in Friday’s game, she would have 11 by halftime.
Then moments later, Ashlee Strawbridge tough post moves, gets to the bucket, CSI up by 21.
But Snow College not going anywhere, Ashlee Edwards fires from long range, she would have 13 points.
But CSI too dominant, Courtney Stothard would set up from three range, it would be her only points of the night, but good one and the defense just as stifling as the offense, CSI would win big, 83-57.
The bench scored 40 points, leading the way, Kiana Eskelson who had 11 points, while Sierra Davis added 10.
“We wanted to get into the 60s, 70′s and 80′s and I thought we had a pretty good chance of winning it. But I’m really proud of our effort, we got to play everyone, we had kids that hadn’t played much all year that took some big shots for us.”
“Every single time in practice, we talked about winning the Region 18 Tournament and going to Lubbock and we did that. We needed every one of the players tonight,” said Region 18 Tournament MVP Kaitin Burgess who had 11 points, seven rebounds and five assists in the championship.
13 players saw action on Saturday.
Jordan Todd, who led CSI with 15 and made the Region 18 All-Tournament team said, “my team told me they needed me tonight, so I decided to come out and dominate in my field because I knew that they didn’t have their post present as usual.” “So I decided that if I am going to go hard, I’m going to go hard all the way.”
The CSI men’s team would follow, playing their arch rival Salt Lake.
Amoro Lado finds Madit Leeuth who takes it to the hoop for two of his 10 points. CSI up 12-6.
And then Chayce Polynice playing excellent defense, forces a turnover and Daylen Williams takes it coast to coast, but gets hacked on the play.
Then Deng Dut gets the steal, he finds the layup for two of his game-high 31 points, but his bench was more excited for his fadeaway three in the second half. CSI led by 22 with 15:39 left.
Here comes Salt Lake, off the block, Quincy McGriff takes to the hole for two of his 12.
Then CSI forgets how to box out and Bendji Pierre takes advantage, he had 14 points, Bruins down by six with less than a minute to go.
Then here comes KT Raimey and CSI, and the Golden Eagles pull away, winning 94-84 and they are off to the national tournament.
“You talking on the court, it makes everything ‘funner’, Raimey who had 23 points off the bench exclaimed. “Both teams are competing going hard and it makes everything ‘funner’”.”
The first time we played them in conference, Salt Lake had a 16 point lead,” Region 18 Tournament MVP Deng Dut said. “And you know in this league, a 20 point lead, anybody can come back.”
We started speaking with Coach Jeff Reinert, but he got interrupted by one of his players, Eric Grier, who decided to drench him.
He discussed the contributions of Maurice Barnett, “I’m happy about this guy, he deserves it.” Barnett had seven rebounds and just as many assists.
For the first time since 2015, both teams won their Region 18 Championships and are off to their respective national tournaments.
Koto Brewing will be hosting a watch party on Sunday afternoon to find out seeding.
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