May-Port-C-G's Satrom sisters relive Class B State Tournament

Mar. 12—MAYVILLE, N.D. — If Raina and Rylee Satrom would play a 1-on-1 basketball game, their competitive spirit would come out.

"She would probably win," Raina said. "I blame it on her height."

Thankfully for the May-Port-C-G girls basketball team, the pair of senior twins' competitive drive has all been focused in the same direction for the last four months.

The Satrom sisters were a part of MPCG's 2024 state championship team. The pair have played varsity minutes since their freshman year. Rylee has played 98 games for the Patriots while Raina has played 1,800 minutes across 80 games.

"Rylee is a great player because of her speed and her natural athleticism," Raina said. "She's a good shooter and maybe even better defensively. When Rylee guards me in practice it usually can turn into a fight for me and she just laughs at me."

Rylee accounted for 1,575 points for an average of 16.03 points per game. The senior made 489 rebounds, 390 steals and 392 deflections in her 2,445 minutes played. She has been named to the All-Region team four times.

"During free time I like to go up to the high school gym with my dad and he's my rebounder," Rylee said. "He makes me practice doing fast breaks and my free throws cause those are shots that are all in my control.

"Raina and I train together when we have time," she said. "When we get to be together we like to play shooting competitions, 1v1 and anything else that will get us to improve our game. We get very competitive with each other. It's all fun and games but it brings the excitement."

Raina has adopted more of a point guard role for the Patriots. The senior ball-handler has scored 418 points and made 265 rebounds. She dished out 287 assists and has made 215 steals.

"Raina is aggressive on defense," Rylee said. "She doesn't care about the amount she scores when she knows the amount of assists she has each game is the true factor of our success. Playing with Raina has been so much fun. It's like we know where each other is on the court at all times."

The Satrom twins began playing basketball in third grade when they got signed up for a 3-on-3 basketball league.

While Rylee has been all in from the start, it took Raina a little bit longer to find a passion for the game.

"I didn't stick with basketball and didn't plan on continuing playing," Raina said. "Growing up I also played hockey while playing basketball. I played basketball until seventh grade but in eighth grade I decided to play high school girls hockey."

Raina's plans were disrupted by a global pandemic.

"Mayville has a co-op with Crookston, Minnesota, for girls hockey so I traveled about an hour every day for practice and even further for games," Raina said. "When ninth grade came around and COVID was happening, Minnesota didn't know if there was gonna be a hockey season so I made kind of an impulse decision to go back to basketball."

It turned out to be a great decision.

"I really did enjoy hockey and do miss it but it was great to be able to come back and play basketball with my sister and friends," Raina said. "It was hard being away from home and missing out on the basketball memories."

Finishing out her career winning a state championship with her twin was a pretty way to cap off all of her prep basketball memories.

Coming into the state tournament, May-Port-C-G was the No. 1 seed. The Patriots faced off against eighth-ranked Kenmare/Bowbells in the first round of the tournament. May-Port-C-G lived up to its No. 1 seeding, defeating the Honkers 64-43.

The following day, in the semis, the Patriots dispatched third-ranked Central McLean 62-35.

"Nervous and excited were definitely how I was feeling before the first two games," Raina said. "The first game is the most important because it gets you into the winning bracket. After the games, I felt a little relieved but the nerves came back every day.

"I get nervous before every game," she said. "It felt like more pressure coming in as the No. 1 seed. My teammates and I would talk and we felt like the only option was to win the basketball state championship."

May-Port's last appearance at the state tournament came in 2001. The team's lone state championship came in 1975.

"With it being so long since MPCG won a state basketball state championship, we knew it had to be our year," Raina said. "Bringing it back to the community makes it even better. They get just as excited as the players."

MPCG matched up against sixth-seeded Edgeley/Kulm-Montpelier in the Class B title game.

"Emotionally we were thrilled to be in the state championship," Rylee said. "Knowing that the state title was just one game away made us want it even more. We weren't able to sit still all day, we just wanted to go play.

"There was some nerves but mostly we knew as seniors it was going to be our last game, so with that in mind, we wanted to have as much fun as possible," she said. "We came in loose and determined."

May-Port defeated the Rebels 55-41.

When the final buzzer sounded, Rylee looked toward the sidelines and caught Raina's eye.

"Unfortunately, I was on the bench because I fouled out with 12 seconds left but it was a surreal feeling," Raina said. "That feeling that I had after the final buzzer was a relief but also made all the years and long and hard practices all worth it for sure. Truly no better feeling."

Since accepting their state championship trophy, the Satrom twins have had a couple of weeks to digest and glory in the culmination of 10 years' worth of work.

"The whole tournament was such a positive experience and having all our families there was truly something I'll never forget," Rylee said. "These memories are what us seniors will look back on first when remembering our high school careers.

"We've had so many compliments from our community and everyone is just proud of us, it's been great since we made it home," she said.