Pirates lose opener to Nezperce
In a battle of defending state champions the Nezperce Indians outlasted the Prairie Pirates 29-37 at Cottonwood Monday, Nov. 29.
It was the season opener for both teams.Beau Schlader drives past a Nezperce defender.
Prairie had trouble from the start hitting their shots as they netted just 2 of 15 attempts in the first quarter as Nezperce jumped out to a 3-9 lead.
Devin Schmidt, Prairie’s only returning starter from last season, hit a shot at the end of the first quarter to cut the lead to 5-9 and then opened the second quarter with a basket to pull the Pirates within 2 at 7-9.
The rest of the second quarter though was all Nezperce as they reeled off 10 straight points thanks in large part to Pirate turnovers as Prairie attempted just 5 shots in the second quarter.
Prairie went scoreless for nearly 7 minutes until Beau Schlader hit a 3-pointer with 45 seconds left. Schlader then picked up his third foul to join Schmidt, who had picked up his third foul earlier in the quarter.
Nezperce score the first 2 points of the second half to take their biggest lead of the game at 10-23.
Prairie then started to climb back into the game. A steal by David Johnson led to a basket by Schmidt. Seth Guyer followed with a pair of free throws to get the deficit under double digits.
Nezperce scored a basket then Prairie ended the third quarter with a 5-0 run to pull within 6. Johnson scored a putback and Schmidt added a free throw and a basket, the last set up by a steal by Brock Heath.
Schlader stole the ball early in the fourth quarter and that eventually led to a basket by him to pull the Pirates within 4 at 21-25. Unfortunately, about 30 seconds later Schlader picked up his fifth foul.
Thirty seconds later Nezperce broke a 7 minute scoring drought with a pair of baskets to push the lead back to 8.
Prairie answered with a 3 pointer by Marcus Higgins and then the defense forced an over-and-back violation that led to a basket by Guyer that pulled the Pirates within 3 at 26-29 with 2:01 left.
Nezperce answered with a basket and then converted free throws down the stretch as Prairie resorted to fouling to try and get the ball back.
Seth Guyer heads for the hoop after a Nezperce turnover. Trailing the play is Justin Schmidt.Nezperce outscored Prairie 3-8 in the final 2 minutes with only 1 basket and 6 free throws. Devin Schmidt hit a 3-pointer for Prairie’s only points in the run.
Schmidt wound up with 12 points to lead the Pirates in scoring with Schlader and Guyer scoring 5 each, Johnson 4 and Higgins 3.
Johnson and Guyer each had 9 rebounds although Nezperce held the advantage on the boards at 32-36.
Schlader and Heath had 3 steals each while Schlader had 4 assists.
Prairie was just 11 for 48 from the field, 23%, and 4 for 10 at the line, 40%. Nezperce was 12 for 35 from the field, 34%, and 13 for 28 at the line, 46%.
In the JV game the Indians broke open a close game in the third quarter and went on to win 21-40.
Nezperce led 3-6 after a low-scoring first quarter that saw each team commit 6 turnovers.
Prairie’s only points came on a 3-pointer by Marcus Higgins.
In the second quarter Prairie limited Nezperce to just 6 shots but 2 of those were 3-pointers as they were unable to gain much ground despite connecting on 5 baskets of their own. Tyler Hankerson scored 4 in the quarter as Prairie outscored the Indians 11-10 to cut the margin to 2 points at the half, 14-16.
Nezperce dominated the third quarter as Prairie was only able to attempt 6 shots due to 7 turnovers, with Seth Chaffee scoring Prairie’s only 2 points. Nezperce scored 13 to take a 13 point lead into the fourth quarter.
Higgins cut the lead to 10 with a 3-pointer to open the fourth quarter but Nezperce scored the next 9 points to put the game away. 
Higgins had 8 points to lead the JV team in scoring with Chaffee and Hankerson scoring 4 each. Troy Lorentz and Chris Hoene scored 2 each and Casey Danly scored 1.
Lorentz led the team in rebounding with 9 while Hoene had 8. Nezperce held the edge on the boards at 28-41.
Lorentz had 3 steals and Hoene had 2 assists.
Prairie was 8 for 44 from the field, 18%, and 1 for 7 at the line, 14%. Nezperce was 17 for 44 from the field, 39%, and 3 for 7 at the line, 43%.
Nezperce 9 12 4 12 -37
Prairie      5   5 9 10 -29
Prairie-Schlader 2-10, 0-0, 5; Guyer 1-8, 3-6, 5; D. Schmidt 5-13, 1-2, 12; Johnson 2-5, 0-0, 4; Heath 0-5, 0-0, 0; J. Schmidt 0-3, 0-1, 0; Lorentz 0-0, 0-1, 0; Higgins 1-3, 0-0, 3. 3-pointers-Schlader, D. Schmidt, Higgins.
Nezperce-C. Riggers 4-12, 5-9, 13; J. Riggers 0-1, 6-10, 6; Wemhoff 0-1, 0-0, 0; Mizer 4-5, 0-2, 8; Wahl 3-6, 1-3, 7; Scott 0-1, 0-0, 0; Zenner 1-1, 0-0, 2; Hill 0-7, 1-2, 1; Olson 0-1, 0-0, 0; Kuther 0-0, 0-2, 0. 3-pointers-none.
Justin Schmidt drives past Nezperce’s Chris Riggers during their game Monday at PHS.
Devin Schmidt puts up a jump shot as Troy Lorentz, 10, and Justin Schmidt, 20, battle for rebound position.

JV games start at 6 p.m., varsity to follow unless indicated
*indicates league game
29-Nezperce, here, lost 29-37
  3-Grangeville, there, Idaho County Shootout
  4-Troy, there
10-Kendrick, here*
13-Orofino, there
14-Lapwai, here
16-Timberline, there
28-Kamiah there
  6-C.V., here*
  7-Deary, there*
11-Genesee, here
15-Potlatch, there, 4 p.m.*
18-Summit, here
20-Grangeville, here
21-Nezperce, there
25-Kamiah, there
27-Highland, here
29-Lapwai, there*
  1-Troy, here*
  8-Genesee, there*
10-Kamiah, here
17, 18, 21, 22 & 24-District at LCSC
26-State Play-in game at St. Maries
March 3-5-State at Caldwell

Games start at 4 p.m. unless indicated
2-Grangeville, here
7-Kamiah, there
9-Orofino, here
14-Summit, there
16-Lapwai, here

Cottonwood, Idaho 83522


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