S.D. Newspaper Services, Inc.
MAR 3 H 2008
Some people asked me what I did last weekend, since 1 didn't have a state tournament to attend for a change.
The answer was quite simple. 1 still watched South Dakota-flavored basketball, this time on the TV screen, in the person of Mitchell's Mike Miller, his Florida teammates and the other seven teams in the Elite Eight of the NCAA tournament.
Now it's down to the Final Four this coming weekend and Miller and Co. of Florida are among them. Actually, the term Miller and Co. would be a misnomer of sorts because Florida's bench is extremely deep and substitutes get numerous playing minutes. I think I heard that the starters average only 29 minutes of playing time, or maybe that was the per-game average of each of the top 10 players on the team.
But Mike "Skinny" Miller certainly seems to be the go-to guy down the stretch In close games! That's not bad for a guy who played his high school career In a Com Palace. And that Corn Palace even got some publicity from the TV announcers, complete with a little video clip.
They most certainly don't pay me to scout high school basketball playersl I remember predicting that after his freshman year Miller would be back playing at Northern with his brother.
Heck. I was wrong on both accounts. Miller didn't transfer to Northern and his brother didn't even last out the entire basketball season In a Wolves' uniform this year.
Larry Olson of rural Ipswich got to see Miller in a regular season game down in Florida this season and even got to visit with him after the game. Olson said that Miller seemed particularly pleased to be able to visit fellow South Dakotans.
Speaking of college basketball players. 1HS graduate Jennifer DeGroot Is working her way up through the ranks on the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology women's basketball team. The sophomore got off a couple of shot attempts in her team's second-round loss to the top-seeded team of the NAIA Division II national championship in Sioux City. Iowa earlier this month.
Her team competed in that tourney during the same time that her sister Josie and her Ipswich Lady Tiger teammates were competing in the State A volleyball tourney, ironically, held in Rapid City, home of SDSM&T.
But, Jennifer had driven to Ipswich so she could watch the IMS volleyball team win their Region 1A title match over Milbank, then made the long trip back to Rapid City.
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