Kingsland’s Josh Bradley goes up for a shot in a crowd of Bulldogs.  CHRISTINE VREEMAN/SPRING VALLEY TRIBUNE
Kingsland’s Josh Bradley goes up for a shot in a crowd of Bulldogs. CHRISTINE VREEMAN/SPRING VALLEY TRIBUNE
With three losses against two teams last week to end the regular season, Kingsland will now begin Section 1A competition on Thursday at Lanesboro.

The Kingsland boys basketball team began and ended the week with games against a strong Plainview-Elgin-Millville Bulldog team on Monday and Friday. The Knights also travelled to St. Charles on Tuesday night to take on another conference opponent in the Saints. The state-ranked Bulldogs were able to roll over the Knights in both contests while the Saints came from behind to steal a win from the visiting Knights.

Plainview-Elgin-Millville 76, Kingsland 49

Kingsland (6-18, 4-14) opened the week on Monday at home against the class AA 10th ranked Plainview-Elgin-Millville Bulldogs (18-5, 12-1). The Bulldogs took control early and never looked back, as they never trailed in the game.

Senior guard Jordan Meskill led the Knights in scoring in the first half, shooting two for three from the field and two for two from the free throw line for six points. The next highest scorer in the half for Kingsland was Nick Niemeyer who chipped in five points and added three rebounds. Quinn Larson stuffed the stat sheet in the opening period; the sophomore guard recorded two points, three rebounds, one steal and one assist.

PEM jumped out to an early 6-1 lead and stayed in control for the remainder of the game. The Knights were able to climb to within three points when a basket by Marcus Plaehn, assisted by fellow forward Julius Wolf, made it 10-7. That would be as close as Kingsland would get however, as the Bulldogs closed the half on a 39-15 run to take a 49-22 lead into the locker room.

The scoring disparity didn't continue into the second half. Each team scored 27 points in the final period, preserving the Bulldogs' 27-point lead. Plaehn led the Knights in scoring during the second half, scoring six of his game-high 10 points. Niemeyer added four second half points and Meskill connected on a three pointer, giving each nine points for the game.

Ultimately, the Knights were unable to overcome their 20 turnovers and 30 percent shooting from the field. PEM only committed eight turnovers in the game and was able to get to the free throw line effectively as the Bulldogs coasted to victory.

Points: Plaehn 10, Meskill 9, Niemeyer 9, Rindels 7, Larson 5, Friemuth 5, Moore 3, Bradley 1

Rebounds: Bradley 7, Wolf 7, Niemeyer 6, Larson 6, Rindels 4, Plaehn 2, Bubany 1, Gillespie 1, Meskill 1, Moore 1

Assists: Bubany 1, Rindels 1, Larson 1, Friemuth 1, Meskill 1, Plaehn 1, Niemeyer 1, Wolf 1

Kingsland 60, St. Charles 65

Kingsland (6-19, 4-15) travelled to St. Charles on Tuesday night to take on a Saints team that defeated the Knights by 37 points earlier in the season. The Saints (17-7, 12-7) weren't able to duplicate their previous dominance of the Knights on this night, however, as Kingsland held the lead for most of the game.

The Knights jumped out to an early 15-5 lead thanks in part to two buckets each from forwards Plaehn and Wolf. St. Charles was able to respond, storming back to take their biggest lead of the half, 17-21. Kingsland erased the deficit almost immediately and reclaimed the lead. The Knights closed the half on an 11-2 run during which senior Jacob Rindels scored four of his game-high 15 points. Rindels also recorded three of his four steals in the first half. Kingsland limited its turnovers and capitalized on opportunities from the free throw line (5/6) in the first half as the Knights led by five at the intermission.

Scoring opened in the second half with senior guard Lenny Moore parlaying a steal into two of his 10 points in the game. Kingsland continued to impress in the second, leading for a majority of the half and by as many as nine. St. Charles refused to give up, though, as the Saints tied the game back up at 51 on a three-point basket late in the second half. Another Saints three-point basket minutes later put the home team on top, 58-61. A pair of free throws by guard Isiah Bubany pulled the Knights to within one and gave Bubany eight points. Those would be the last points Kingsland would score, however, as St. Charles closed the game with consecutive buckets to complete the comeback win.

Points: Rindels 15, Wolf 11, Moore 10, Bubany 8, Larson 6, Plaehn 6, Meskill 4

Rebounds: Rindels 9, Larson 6, Wolf 6, Plaehn 5, Meskill 3, Moore 2, Bubany 1, Niemeyer 1

Assists: Moore 2, Rindels 1, Bubany 1

Kingsland 47, Plainview-Elgin-Millville 74

Kingsland (6-20, 4-16) concluded the week on Friday with its second game of the week against the class AA 10th ranked PEM Bulldogs (20-5, 14-1). Each team scored two points less than they did on Monday night, resulting in the same 27-point margin in favor of the Bulldogs.

Despite their previous struggles against the Bulldogs, the Knights began the game looking poised, taking an early 16-10 lead on the road. Rindels and Wolf sparked the early scoring, recording seven and six points respectively during Kingsland's opening surge. PEM wouldn't trail for long, however. The Bulldogs closed the half on a 25-13 scoring run and led by six at half, 29-35. Rindels went on to score 12 of his 14 points in the first half; the guard also contributed three rebounds, one assist, one steal and one block in the half.

PEM opened the second half of play on a 21-2 run and never looked back. Larson and Niemeyer tied for the team lead in points during the second half with four each. Larson also added two of his four assists in the second period. The Knights were limited to only six made field goals on 24 attempts in the second half while Plainview used a 26-15 rebounding advantage to pull away.

Points: Rindels 14, Larson 7, Bubany 6, Meskill 6, Wolf 6, Niemeyer 4, Plaehn 2, Junge 2

Rebounds: Rindels 7, Plaehn 6, Bradley 3, Wolf 3, Larson 2, Friemuth 2, Schwarz 1, Meskill 1, Niemeyer 1

Assists: Larson 4, Rindels 1, Meskill 1, Niemeyer 1, Wolf 1

Section 1A tourney

Kingsland travels to Lanesboro on Thursday to open the Section 1A tournament. The fifth-seeded Knights will take on No. 4 seed Lanesboro at 7 p.m. The 14-6 Burros haven't played the Knights yet this season.

The winner will likely face No. 1 seed Rushford-Peterson on Tuesday, Feb. 25, at Mayo Civic Auditorium. The Trojans open the tournament with a contest against either No. 8 seed Schaeffer Academy or No. 9 seed Houston, which were to play Tuesday. The Section 1A East title game is Saturday, March 1, at 11 a.m. at Mayo Civic Auditorium.

Kingsland had been playing in Section 1AA in previous years, but joins conference foe Wabasha-Kellogg in the Section 1A tournament. Rushford-Peterson and Fillmore Central are two Three Rivers Conference teams that have been previously competing in Section 1A. The rest of the section is made up of Southeast Conference teams.