Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.
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Cody Rutledge scored 21 points and Ryan Rude added 17 to lead the Bemidji boys basketball team to a 61-47 victory Saturday at Alexandria. "This was a high-quality win for us against a very good team," said BHS coach Jeff Brown.
The season ended for the Bemidji girls hockey team Saturday as North Wright County wore down the Lumberjacks, scoring four unanswered in the third period and downing the Jacks 8-2 in the quarterfinals of the Section 8AA tournament in Monticello. BHS and the River Hawks were tied 2-2 midway through the second period but the home team started to take control in the waning stages of the stanza as it scored 10:56 and 16:45 into the session. The trend continued in the third period as NWC found the net four more times. Bemidji opened the scoring 2:46 into the contest when Allie Heifort tallied a
Hockey coaches always preach putting pucks on the net because the path of the puck is unpredictable and bad bounces or mishandled shots by the goaltender can occur at any time. Saturday night at The Sanford Center the Bemidji boys hockey team was the recipient of one of those bounces and the result was a 3-2 overtime victory over Warroad. After regulation the teams were deadlocked 2-2 and prepared for the 8-minute overtime.
Alex Johnson pinned Theo Wurst 1:16 into the heavyweight match to cap a 44-32 Bemidji win over St. Cloud Tech Friday in Moorhead and the Lumberjacks cruised past Rocori 51-21 to finish the regular season with an 18-9 record. Prior to the campaign BHS coach Rance Bahr challenged his wrestlers to double last year's dual-meet victory total of six.
The Bemidji boys hockey team will shoot for an undefeated home campaign 5:15 p.m. today when it hosts Warroad at The Sanford Center. BHS is 8-0-1 at its three home venues and 19-2-2 overall. Warroad will bring a 16-7 record into tonight's contest. The girls hockey team faces a win-or-go-home scenario today as it battles North Wright County in the quarterfinal round of the Section 8AA tournament in Monticello. Both BHS basketball teams will be in Alexandria today as the girls take on the Cardinals at 6 p.m.
Another second-half rally by the Bemidji girls basketball team came up short as the Lumberjacks dropped a 55-45 decision at Alexandria Saturday. BHS trailed 32-12 at intermission but battled back to a seven-point deficit with three minutes to play. A series of turnovers, however, prevented the Lumberjacks from closing the gap any further and the home team finished with a 10-point triumph. "In the second half we started to play the way we are capable of playing and we took care of the basketball," said Bemidji coach Rick Kehoe.
During the pre-season practices the Bagley boys basketball players decided that this year's goal was to finish the season undefeated. They felt that their experience and talent could take them all the way to a state championship and that winning every game was possible. That goal, however, proved unattainable as Bagley lost 65-60 to Ulen-Hitterdal in its season opener. "The players felt bad after losing the first game because they wanted to go undefeated," said Flyers coach Chuck Anderson.
Duluth East headed to Bemidji Thursday night ranked No. 9 in the state Class 4A division and all who seriously follow Minnesota high school basketball have heard of the Greyhounds' star player Johnny Woodard. The Lumberjacks, led by Carey Woods, have had a successful campaign as well and entered Thursday's contest rated eighth in the Class 3A poll. Fans were expecting a see-saw battle Thursday and for 12 minutes that's what they enjoyed.
The Bemidji girls hockey team is headed to Monticello Saturday for its Section 8AA quarterfinal contest as the Lumberjacks were given the seventh seed while North Wright County was ranked second. BHS will tangle with the River Hawks at 7 p.m. Saturday's other quarterfinal matchups send No. 8 River Lakes to No. 1 Roseau and No. 5 St. Cloud to No. 4 Sartell in the upper bracket and No. 6 Moorhead to No. 3 Brainerd-Little Falls in the lower bracket. Saturday's winners will lock horns 7 p.m. Tuesday at the homes of the higher seeds and the Section 8AA championship game will be 7 p.m.
The Bemidji wrestling team will close its regular season today as the Lumberjacks tangle with St. Cloud Tech at 5 p.m. and Rocori at 6:30 p.m. at Moorhead. Originally the Lumberjacks were also scheduled to face the Spuds but the coaches decided to cancel that meet because the teams already squared off Jan. 29 at Fergus Falls. When the season started BHS coach Rance Bahr was hoping that the Jacks could double last year's victory total of six.