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Bemidji's Cody Rutledge drives on Crookston center William Pankow for a basket Tuesday. Pioneer Photo/Monte Draper

Bemidji HS boys basketball team uses speed to beat Crookston

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Jeff Brown wasn't sure what to expect when his Bemidji boys basketball team hosted Crookston Tuesday night.

The Lumberjacks would have an edge in speed and quickness but Crookston's starting cast included 6-9 senior William Pankow, 6-5 senior Tim Desrosier and 6-3 senior Chris Larson.

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"I was worried about their size," Brown admitted. "We tried to counter that by using a variety of presses and zone defenses."

The different defenses worked to perfection as the Lumberjacks roared to a 41-24 halftime edge and coasted to an 86-48 victory. Tuesday's win maintained Bemidji's unbeaten status and the Jacks will take an 8-0 record into Friday's home game against Brainerd.

Ryan Rude's 3-pointer two minutes into the action tied the game at 6-6 and provided the spark that eventually led to a 32-10 advantage.

The Pirates, however, temporarily made things interesting with an 8-0 run but Bemidji held a slight edge the rest of the way and led by 17 at intermission.

"Our defense created many transition opportunities for us during that 20-2 run," Brown said. "But then we were complacent for about four minutes and Crookston was able to creep back into contention.

"That was something we addressed at halftime. We wanted to come out in the second half and play with energy. And that's what we did," the coach said.

Balanced scoring was another key to Tuesday's win as three players reached double figures and 10 Lumberjacks found the scoreboard.

Leading the way was Carey Woods with 23 points. Cody Rutledge added 16 and Ben Hengel scored 11.

"Crookston is a nice club with size and athletic kids but we were able to play our tempo," Woods said. "We always want to force the opponent to play our tempo and Tuesday we were able to do that."

The Lumberjacks won both preliminaries as the junior varsity prevailed 54-38 and the freshman team coasted to a 57-35 win.

Crookston (48): Gregg 2, 1-2, 5; Delage 1, 0-0, 3; Desrosier 2, 2-5, 6; Mykleseth 3, 1-3, 7; Larson 1, 0-0, 2; Maiga 1, 0-0, 2; Panakow 9, 3-5, 21; Remick 1, 0-0, 2. Totals; 19, 7-15, 48

Bemidji (86): Hengel 5, 0-0, 11; Rude 4, 0-0, 9; Kroening 1, 0-0, 2; Rutledge 5, 6-7, 16; Brown 3, 0-0, 6; Woods 9, 1-2, 23; Cervenka 1, 0-0, 2; Vonasek 3, 0-0, 6; Richardson 2, 3-5, 7; Declusin 2, 0-0, 4; Supalla 0, 0-0, 0; Mills 0, 0-0, 0; Fodness 0, 0-0, 0; Sullivan 0, 0-0, 0; Sherk 0, 0-0, 0. Totals: 35, 10-14, 86

Fouls: Crookston 11, Bemidji 17

Halftime: Bemidji 48, Crookston 24

Junior Varsity

Crookston (38): Genereaux 1, 3-4, 5; Hellcraft 5, 2-2, 17; Knaack 0, 1-2, 1; Brewster 2, 1-4, 5; Renick 1, 0-3, 2; Bolke 3, 2-2, 8. Totals: 12, 9-17, 38

Bemidji (54): Baumgartner 0, 0-0, 0; Fodness 2, 1-2, 5; Fairbanks 1, 0-0, 2; Supalla 0, 2-2, 2; Seado 2, 0-0, 4; Kroening 0, 0-0, 0; Cervenka 13, 1-3, 28; Sherk 0, 1-4, 1; McLean 0, 0-0, 0; Huseby 2, 0-0, 4; Declusin 1, 3-4, 5; Misco 0, 0-0, 0; Mills 1, 0-0, 2; Sullivan 0, 1-4, 1. Totals: 22, 9-17, 54

Fouls: Crookston 17, Bemidji 24

Halftime: Bemidji 19, Crookston 12

Freshman Game

Bemidji 57, Crookston 35

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Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

(218) 333-9200
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