WATERTOWN, S.D. -- A fast start by St. Thomas More and a tough shooting night for Vermillion made for a bad combination at the Cavaliers handled the Tanagers 44-26 in a Class A state opener here Thursday.

The Cavliers, four-time defending Class A state champions, held a 14-5 lead after the first quarter. Vermillion began the game shooting 1 of 14 from the field, with the lone make a 3-pointer from Haleigh Melstad.

Offense vanished for both teams in the second quarter as each scored four points. St. Thomas More stretched its lead to 30-18 after three quarters.

Vermillion shot just 24 percent for the game on 9 of 38 from the field. The Cavaliers were not a lot better at 38 percent, but they did go 12 of 18 from the free throw line.

Vermillion was led by Melstad's eight points and Lexi Plitzuweit added six. STM's Haleigh Timmer had 12 and Aislinn Duffy added 11 points and 10 rebounds.

The Tanagers will play a 1:45 p.m. consolation game tomorrow.