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Rapid City Stevens' Connor King is guarded by Rapid City Central's Dylan Hay during their game Friday at Carold Heier Gymnasium in Rapid City.

Testing, one, two, three.

Just checking to see if this blog still works.

At any rate, just a note or two on some recent basketball that has been played in Rapid City.

Big kudos to the area hoops fans. In my five-plus years that I have been here at the Journal, I don't believe I have witnessed the crowd I saw at last Friday's Rapid City Central-Rapid City Stevens boys' basketball game.

Online reports have the attendance at just short of 4,000 fans to see the then No. 2 Raiders hold off the then No. 1 Cobblers 57-53.

I'd say that is just short of awesome. No, I would say that it is awesome.

I've been told that Carold Heier Gymnasium has filled up before. It was the first time for me to see it and I was impressed.

What a fun atmosphere, and of course, the game lived up to its billing.

By the way, the Raiders have leapfrogged, as expected, to No. 1 with Central now No. 2. Both teams have a tough chore to stay that way by the time they meet again Feb. 15 as they'll face a couple of Sioux Falls teams this weekend — Lincoln and Washington.

Regardless, the two teams will meet again next week at the smaller Naasz Gymnasium, and I doubt that I'm going out on a limb in predicting that there won't be a seat left by tip-off.

Tuesday night there was a full house to watch the doubleheader between the South Dakota School of Mines and Black Hills State University men and women. The official attendance was 1,126, which is about what Goodell Gymnasium can hold.

Yet another rivalry game and yet another great atmosphere. As someone who has been through the Mines-BHSU rivalries as a student, it is good to see some of that coming back.

The game in Spearfish was also very well attended with over 1,200 in attendance.

The thought occurred to me Friday night at the Stevens-Central game that maybe this rivalry should be played in the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center.

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Of course, the Black Hills Stock Show was there nullifying the opportunity.

But I'm thinking that if people knew there would be more room, maybe there would be bigger crowds?

Mines and BHSU have played in the Civic Center before, and probably if you took all of the people in attendance Tuesday night you would have had the same attendance in the Civic Center in last year's Rapid City games.

But it's not the same. There's something about a packed house, even if the house isn't as big as it could be.

So, never mind on moving all of the big games to the Civic Center.

One, the teams will lose a little bit of their home-court advantage and that is part of these rivalries.

Two, the louder the better and the closer to the court the better for all of the team's students and fans.

That's what makes these rivalries the best.

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Sports Editor

Sports reporter for the Rapid City Journal.