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Bemidji HS girls basketball: second-half rally falls short

Brainerd defenders smother Bemidji's Jess Yost as she puts up a shot Thursday. Pioneer Photo/Monte Draper

A second half surge delivered by the defense enabled the Bemidji girls basketball team to stage a comeback but the Lumberjacks couldn't maintain the pace in the final few minutes and dropped a 50-46 home decision Thursday to Brainerd.

BHS did little right in the opening half and trailed 27-13 at the break. In the second stanza, however, the Jacks turned their fortunes around as the defense kept the Warriors off the board for almost five minutes and the offense was able to take advantage of the opportunities.

Cori Treat's bucket from the right corner with 9:12 to play tied the game 29-29 but the visitors responded with Kayla Kraemer's basket 22 seconds later to give Brainerd a 31-29 advantage. And the Warriors maintained a lead the rest of the way.

"We played 10 minutes of solid basketball," said BHS coach Rick Kehoe, "and that came at the start of the second half.

"But we played very poor basketball in the first half. We had 19 turnovers in the first half and that was against a zone defense."

The second-half surge began with baskets by Summer Monsrud and Jess Yost. After Brainerd connected from the lane to take a 29-17 lead, however, Bemidji's defense went to work.

During the next five minutes the Warriors succumbed to Bemidji's pressure by committing five turnovers, missing three shots and being called for three charging fouls.

The Lumberjacks offense, on the other hand, fared much better as it forged a 12-0 run fueled by a pair of baskets by Yost and buckets courtesy of Monsrud, Maren Erpelding, Jenna Sagedahl and Treat.

BHS stayed within reach until the final four minutes when Brainerd manufactured an 8-0 spurt to grab a 48-38 lead.

And another Jacks rally came up short.

No Lumberjacks reached double figures. Yost finished with nine while Monsrud and Caitlin Hadrava had eight.

Bemidji, 4-8, is off until Tuesday when it travels to Little Falls.

Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

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