PHOTO OF THE DAY: JUST BEFORE TIPOFF
Craig Cassens and Jo Auch come together just prior to the Class B state championship game at the Barnett Center in Aberdeen Saturday night, March 20. Cassens and Auch both have ties to the Menno and Freeman communities; Craig, today the principal at Faulkton High School and a member of the South Dakota High School Activities Association board of directors, was teaching at Freeman Public 20 years ago while Auch was a longtime teacher and coach at Menno before stepping in as assistant executive director of the SDHSAA in 2008. Both helped oversee the state tournament, which saw top-seed De Smet win the title after defeating No. 7 Aberdeen Christian 59-43 in front of a raucous crowd of 2,000. Also competing in Aberdeen the past three days were Canistota and Viborg-Hurley; the Cornbelt Conference representatives placed seventh and fourth, respectively, with the Hawks losing their first two before beating Lyman 59-44 on Saturday. The Cougars, meanwhile, won their first game on Thursday 53-45 over Lyman before dropping their final two Friday and Saturday.