WEST FARGO—West Fargo seniors Ahmed Aden, Creighton Pfau and Tyson Jelinek stood out in the Packers' Eastern Dakota Conference boys basketball victory over Fargo Shanley on Thursday.
It was their night after all, as seniors were recognized prior to West Fargo's 71-61 win over the Deacons at West Fargo High School.
Seniors accounted for 86 percent of the Packers' points Thursday and leading the way was Aden, who poured in 27.
"It was a really fun atmosphere," Aden said. "The seniors were playing their last home game of the year and we knew we had to give it all we could. No one was selfish and we all played as a team."
The North Dakota Class A, No. 3-ranked Packers trailed 30-27 at halftime, but came out strong to start the second half.
Aden, who also had 21 rebounds, fueled an 11-0 run in the opening minutes of the second half by hitting three 3-pointers. His third 3-pointer during that stretch gave West Fargo 44-34 lead with 13 minutes, four seconds left to play.
Jelinek and Pfau each added 16 points for the Packers (16-2, 16-1 EDC). West Fargo has now won 12 straight games, tying a single-season record which has been done three different times in program history. The program's longest winning streak is 13 games which spanned over the 1991-92 and 1992-93 seasons.
West Fargo head coach Josh Downey said his seniors have bought into their roles this season, but on Thursday turnovers spoiled the fun at times.
"We had 24 turnovers, which is by far a season high," Downey said.
West Fargo shot 57.1 percent (16 of 28) from the floor in the second half, an improvement from 28.6 percent in the first half. The Packers also won the rebounding battle 51-34.
"We made some mental mistakes early, but we played a lot smarter in the second half and that helped us gain the lead," Pfau said.
Sophomore forward Jake Kava posted a team-high 23 points for the Deacons (10-6, 9-6). Junior Jake Reinholz added 22.
"Early on when we were playing well we let them hang around by them getting offensive rebounds, but that's sort of been their trademark lately," Shanley head coach Shane Alderman said. "In the second half they started to shoot better. (Ahmed) Aden is such a good shooter and he had a great half shooting the basketball."