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GIRLS BASKETBALL: East Grand Forks edges Bemidji 52-50

Bemidji senior Cheyenne Woods, right, drives into the middle for two points in the second half against East Grand Forks on Friday night. Monte Draper | Bemidji Pioneer

BEMIDJI — All season Bemidji girls basketball coach Rick Kehoe has been preaching defense and Friday at the BHS gym his players put those lessons into practice.

The stingy Lumberjacks continually thwarted East Grand Forks and the home team owned the lead much of the way.

Down the stretch, however, the Green Wave managed to crack the defense just often enough to down Bemidji 52-50.

“I liked our defensive effort,” Kehoe said.

“And I liked our effort the entire game. We got after it defensively Friday night.”

The defensive effort enabled BHS to open a 5-4 lead early in the action after a pair of Casey Palmer free throws and eventually build a 29-23 advantage at intermission.

A typical sequence occurred late in the opening stanza when the Jacks forced East Grand Forks to work the ball around the defense for a full 95 seconds and the Green Wave came up empty on the possession as it missed an awkward shot.

“We were bringing it Friday night,” Kehoe said.

The visitors found a few cracks in Bemidji’s defensive armor in the second stanza and seven minutes into the half they used an 8-2 run to tie the game 38-38.

The lead exchanged hands four more times down the stretch but with 40 seconds to play East Grand Forks fashioned a 3-0 spurt to open a 51-50 cushion.

The Lumberjacks missed a shot on their next possession and the Green Wave added a point to its lead with a free throw with 16 seconds to go.

In the final few seconds BHS missed an open shot inside and was off target with a three-pointer the buzzer.

Friday’s loss dropped the Lumberjacks to 3-14. Their next game will be Feb. 8 at home against Alexandria.

East Grand Forks 52, Bemidji 50 East Grand Forks (52): Skyberg 5, 0-0, 12; Schlenk 3, 4-6, 11; Arroyo 2, 0-0, 4; Potter 7, 3-4, 17; Schnathorst 1, 0-0, 2; Westrem 1, 4-6, 6. Totals: 19, 11-16, 52

Bemidji (50): Ricci 0, 0-0, 0; Leif 1, 0-0, 2; Chadwick 1, 0-0, 2; Greendahl 4, 1-2, 9; Olson 4, 0-0, 10; Woods 3, 4-4, 10; Serratore 1, 0-0, 2; Sagedahl 1, 0-0, 2; Smith 1, 2-2, 5; Palmer 1, 5-6, 8. Totals: 17, 12-14, 50

3-point FG: EGF 3, Bemidji 3 (Olson 2, Smith 1)

Fouls: EGF 11, Bemidji 12

Halftime: Bemidji 29, EGF 23

Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

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