Luverne with Section 3AA win over Fairmont |  News, Sports, Work

Luverne with Section 3AA win over Fairmont | News, Sports, Work

DOUBLE BLOCK — Fairmont’s Logan Junkermeier (left) and Oliver Tordsen (30) combine to block a shot by Luverne’s Jaden Johnson (13) during the sectional 3AA basketball opener Saturday night at Cardinal Gym in Fairmont. (Photo by Greg Abel)

FAIRMONT — Luverne head basketball coach John Sichmeller is adapting a page from Hickory High School coach Norman Dale’s fictional practice plan as he prepares to face Fairmont in the Section 3AA playoffs.

Carter Serr made a game-best five 3-pointers to fuel his game-high 22-point performance, while Gavin DeBeer had a double-double of 18 points and a game-high 14 rebounds to power No. 5 Luverne to a 65-57 victory over No. 4 seed Fairmont on Saturday night in Fairmont.

Luverne (12-12) advances to face No. 1 South seed Redwood Valley (17-10) in the quarterfinals at 6 p.m. Thursday night in Windom. Redwood Valley earned a first-round bye.

Fairmont finished its season 13-14 overall.

“With their size advantage (6-foot-7 starters Oliver Tordsen and Logan Junkermeier), we knew Fairmont was going to play a zone (defense) against us tonight,” Sihmeller said, “so that’s all we did during the week – we worked on our passing in close proximity.

“We knew we had to use short quick passes and a lot of bounce passes to find some seams in the lane.”

DeBeer used his 6-2 frame and exceptional vertical leap to carve out chunks of space in the paint, with Connor Bose and Jaydon Johnson feeding him passes to help build a 21-12 lead with 9 minutes left in the the first half.

When Fairmont relaxed to help DeBeer, the astute Serr took advantage, hitting four 3-pointers in the first half to help Luverne eventually grab a 36-25 halftime advantage.

“He (Sehr) is probably the best perimeter shooter I’ve ever coached, so we ran a lot of sets on him and tried to get him open looks from behind the (3-point) arc.” Sihmeller said. “Fairmont made a defensive adjustment to open the second half, but we got big contributions from Gavin and Landon (Arendt) down the stretch.”

Logan Junkermeier sparked a 9-0 Fairmont run in the first 4 minutes of the second half to cut Luverne’s lead to 38-34.

Levi Pooley hit a 10-footer in the lane, Pooley fed Tordsen for a low-post layup and Pooley knocked down a 3-pointer off a layup by Hadan Toomer.

Junkermeier’s traditional 3-point play later pulled Fairmont within 46-43 with 12 minutes left before Joseph Hackett spotted Harmon Schrunk for a low block. Hackett’s 10-foot putback basket set up the first of five straight lead changes over the next 6 minutes.

The two sets of Cardinals traded the lead back and forth before the section rivals tied the game for the final time at 56-all on Junkermeier’s putback basket and Thordsen’s low post with 3:38 left in regulation.

Bose put away his only basket of the night on a layup sparked by one of Sehr’s three steals to serve as the catalyst behind Luverne’s 9-1 run to close out the playoff game.

Sehr cashed in on Ahrendt’s pass for a reverse baseline before Junkermeier’s solo free kick broke the rebound.

DeBeer made a perfect layup and layup with Bose for a 62-57 lead with 36 seconds left before DeBeer nailed a dunk to help close out the win.

Arendt, who hit three 3-pointers, contributed 15 points in Luverne’s victories.

Pooley closed out a prolific prep basketball career with a team-best 13 points and three steals, while Tordsen scored 12 points to go with a team-best eight rebounds, five steals and four blocks for Fairmont.

Junkermeier had 10 points for Fairmont, while Hackett had eight points and three assists off the bench for the hometown Cardinals.

Luverne avenged a 62-59 regular season loss to Fairmont on Feb. 1.

Luverne 36-29-65

Fairmont 25-32-57


Logan Junkermeier 4-7 2-3 10, Blaze Geiger 0-2 1-2 1, Oliver Tordsen 6-10 0-4 12, Hadan Toomer 3-9 0-0 7, Levi Pooley 5-17 1-2 13, Harmon Schrunk 2-5 0-0 4, Joseph Hackett 3-5 0-0 8, Nolan Schulze 0-5 0-0 0, Trevor Maakestad 1-3 0-2 2. Totals 24-63 4-13 57.


Connor Bowes 1-4 0-0 2, Carter Zehr 8-15 1-2 22, Jayden Johnson 2-7 2-2 6, Gavin DeBeer 9-15 0-0 18, Landon Arendt 5-10 2-4 15, Elijah Woodley 0-0 0-0 0, Coy Tone 1-1 0-0 2. Total 26-52 5-8 65.

3-pointers: Luverne 8-17 (Zerr 5-9, Arendt 3-5, Johnson 0-3); Fairmont 5-19 (Hackett 2-2, Pulley 2-9, Toomer 1-5, Schulze 0-3). Foul out: None. Rebounds: Luverne 37 (DeBeer 14); Fairmont 31 (Tordsen 8). Assists: Luverne 15 (Bose 6, Johnson 3); Fairmont 9 (Hackett 3). Steals: Fairmont 12 (Tordsen 5, Pulley 3); Luverne 5 (Many 3). Blocks: Fairmont 5 (Tordsen 4).

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