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GIRLS BASKETBALL: Bemidji scores big win over highly ranked Brainerd

The Lumberjacks and Warriors were tied at intermission, but it didn’t stay that way for long. Bemidji outscored Brainerd 39-24 in the second half, more than enough for a 56-41 statement victory.

021622.S.BP.BHSGBB Jackie Johnson.jpg
Bemidji senior Jackie Johnson (13) scores a 3-pointer in the first half against Brainerd on Saturday, Feb. 12, 2022, at Bemidji High School.
Jillian Gandsey / Bemidji Pioneer

BEMIDJI -- The Bemidji High School girls basketball team took off like a rocket in the second half of Saturday’s game against Brainerd at the BHS Gymnasium.

The Lumberjacks and Warriors were tied at intermission, but it didn’t stay that way for long. Bemidji outscored Brainerd 39-24 in the second half, more than enough for a 56-41 statement victory.

The win was one of the Jacks’ best of the season, as the Warriors (16-4) came into the game ranked No. 13 in Class 4A.

The two sides were tied at 17-17 after 18 minutes, but the Bemidji offense warmed up in the second half. The Lumberjacks doubled their output in the final frame, including a string of 18 straight free throw makes to end the game and ice the win.

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Bemidji junior Beth Bolte (23) shoots in the first half against Brainerd on Saturday, Feb. 12, 2022, at Bemidji High School.
Jillian Gandsey / Bemidji Pioneer

Jackie Johnson led Bemidji with 21 points, which featured a 10-for-11 performance at the charity stripe. Jody Pemberton had 14 points of her own, while Kate Hildenbrand pitched in nine second-half points. As a team, the Jacks shot 25-for-31 from the free-throw line, including 22-for-25 in the second half.

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The Lumberjacks have now won four games in a row, improving to 9-10 on the season. They’ll next travel to Hibbing for a 7:15 p.m. showdown on Monday, Feb. 14.

Bemidji 56, Brainerd 41

BRD 17 24 -- 41

BEM 17 39 -- 56

BRAINERD (16-4) -- E. Tautges 9, Stadum 8, O. Tautges 8, K. Johnson 6, Nelson 5, Smith 3, M. Tautges 2.

BEMIDJI (9-10) -- Johnson 21, Pemberton 14, Hildenbrand 9, Bolte 5, Peterson 3, G. Bieber 2, M. Bieber 1, Milbrandt 1.

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