SIOUX FALLS – There was a shared characteristic among the players selected to the Class AA Boys first team All-State team: They were all remarkably strong shooters.
Selected by the South Dakota Basketball Coaches Association, all five players were remarkably strong shooters, with four of the five shooting north of 48 percent from the field and the fifth registering a 42-percent mark.
Player of the Year Matt Cartwright of O’Gorman headlined the team. He was joined by Rapid City Stevens’ Mason Archambault, Pierre’s Brad Dean, fellow Knight senior JP Costello, Brookings’ Josh Mohs and Aberdeen Central’s Cole Bergan.
Cartwright and Costello, the lone first-team selections to come from the first team, served as the battery for the AA champion Knights.
Cartwright accumulated 505 points (second most in program history) and made 68 3-pointers, matching Mitch Begeman’s single-season record at O’Gorman.
For the year, the 6-foot-1 guard shot over 55 percent from the field.
“There’s no question he’s going to go down as the most decorated player we’ve ever had to wear a Knights uniform,” O’Gorman coach Derek Robey said of Cartwright. “And we’ve had some really good ones. Just his scoring and shooting ability and the run we’ve had here – he’s very deserving of all the awards coming his way.”
Costello, a 6-foot-6 forward, was a force inside throughout the year, averaging 13.7 points and five rebounds per outing.
He overcame an injury-riddled finish to the regular season and did a little bit of everything in the state championship game against Aberdeen Central, logging 27 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, three blocks and two steals.
“The big difference in the second half was we got the ball inside to JP Costello,” Robey said after the game. “He just had a great night, a great tournament. He’s a great kid.”
The focal point of the opponent’s defense every time he stepped onto the floor, Archambault still poured in 18 points and 3.2 assists per game for Rapid City Stevens.
He was a highly-accurate shooter from the field, posting a 48-percent mark from the field and a 41-percent mark (50-for-122) from behind the arc. The 6-foot-1 guard also led the All-State selections from the free throw line, where he shot 88 percent (89-for-101).
“The big thing with Mason is he knows teams are going to be out to stop him, so he’ll get other guys going,” Stevens coach Chris Stoebner said. “But when the game is on the line, he’s going to take control and try to win it for you.”
The Govs’ leading scorer at 19 points per game on 42 percent shooting, Dean passed Nic Hogan for the school’s single-season 3-point record with 77 on the season.
The 6-foot guard graduates with the second-most 3-pointers made in program history, behind only Lance Severyn.
“Bradley is one of the best shooters to ever come out of Riggs High School,” coach Terry Becker said. “In our program, he displayed an exceptional work ethic, a flare for the dramatic, and tremendous success, all while demonstrating such humility.”
Mohs, a 6-foot-1 guard, averaged 13 points per game on 48 percent shooting for the Bobcats.
A multi-faceted threat, he also averaged five rebounds, four assists and over a steal per game for Brookings, which finished seventh at the state tournament.
Mohs was one of four all-state selections who recorded over 100 free throw attempts.
“Josh worked extremely hard during the offseason to improve his game,” coach Travis Engebretson said. “His unselfish leadership was key to our success. He was willing to sacrifice his game at times to find better opportunities for his teammates.”
The lone non-senior to be named to the first team, Bergan anchored the Aberdeen Central frontcourt in 2016-17. For the year, the 6-foot-7 center averaged 16.3 points and seven rebounds per game.
He shot 51 percent from the field overall, but posted a 59-percent conversion rate on shots from inside the arc. Defensively, he blocked about a shot per game.
“Cole's ability to score and pass out of the post was a huge part of our offense this year,” Brent Norberg said. “He is an unselfish player who enjoys getting other people shots as much or more than scoring himself.”
Members of the second team were: Matthew Mors, a 6-6 eighth-grade center from Yankton; Peyton Zabel, a 6-6 junior forward from Pierre; Brennan Carlson, a 6-3 guard/forward from Brookings; Tye Evers, a 6-5 senior forward from Huron; Spencer Waege, a 6-4 senior forward from Watertown; and Jack Talley, a 6-4 senior forward from Sioux Falls Washington.
Class AA All-State Boys’ Basketball Team
Chosen by South Dakota Basketball Coaches Association
Matt Cartwright, Sioux Falls O’Gorman, 6-5, Sr., Guard/Forward (21 ppg, 2.5 apg, 68 3-pointers).
Mason Archambault, Rapid City Stevens, 6-1, Sr., Guard (18 ppg, 2.8 apg, 3.2 apg).
Brad Dean, Pierre T.F. Riggs, 6-0, Sr., Guard (19 ppg, 41 steals, 77 3-pointers).
JP Costello, Sioux Falls O’Gorman, 6-6, Sr., Forward (13.7 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 20 blocks)
Josh Mohs, Brookings, 6-1, Sr., Guard (13 ppg, 5 rpg, 4 apg).
Cole Bergen, Aberdeen Central, 6-7, Jr., Center (16.3 ppg, 7.3 rpg, 1.2 bpg).
Matthew Mors, Yankton, 6-6, 8th, Center (20.1 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 33 blocks).
Peyton Zabel, Pierre, 6-6, Jr., Forward (17 ppg, 9.1 rpg, 1.2 bpg).
Brennan Carlson, Brookings, 6-3, Sr., Guard (12.4 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 1.1 spg).
Tye Evers, Huron, 6-5, Sr., Forward (13.2 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 2.6 apg).
Spencer Waege, Watertown, 6-4, Sr., Forward (12 ppg, 7 rpg, 2 apg).
Jack Talley, Sioux Falls Washington, 6-4, Sr., Forward (10.4 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 1.0 bpg).