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Justin Glawe / Forum News Service, Published March 08 2013

Pelican Rapids clips Crookston in Minnesota girls section title game

BEMIDJI, Minn. – Alyssa Huseby stood under the basket, her hands on her hips.

Breathless, panting, stunned.

The 17-year-old Pelican Rapids senior had, just seconds before, found herself wide open under the basket for an easy lay-up. It went in, and the buzzer sounded.

Or so half the crowd at the John S. Glas Fieldhouse thought.

“I just wanted it to go in,” she said. “I thought ‘That’s so in, that’s so in.’ And everyone just went ballistic.”

It went in, but the ball sailed through the goal mouth right after the backboard lit up with a red glow. The Minnesota Class 2A, Section 8 girls basketball championship between Pelican Rapids (21-6) and Crookston (22-6) would head to overtime, and the Vikings would eventually prevail in a 61-56 win.

As the Pelican Rapids bench emptied after Huseby’s shot, and fans leaned forward in preparation for a court-storming, three officials gathered near the right key.

Their decision: no goal.

Crookston coach Lon Boike held his own celebration near mid-court following the call. Then, it was back to the bench.

The overtime period was one of ball control for the Vikings. Time and again Mackenzie Korf (12 points) held the ball above the key. More than 45 seconds went by with almost every Vikings possession, and more than a few ended with a frustrated Crookston player fouling the opposition.

“We just wanted to run the clock,” Huseby said.

If you wanted story lines, there was no shortage Friday night. The two teams brought with them a glut of tales to be told.

Neither had met in competition this year.

Both entered Friday night’s game on five-game win streaks.

Three sophomores started the game for Crookston.

Pelican Rapids, with a trio of fast but small forwards – Mackenzie and Madison Korf and Sommer Haugrud – staved off a Wadena-Deer Creek with Cinderella dreams Tuesday night.

After realizing her easy layup would not be the shot to send her team to the state tournament, it was back the bench for Huseby, and back to work for her team. Overtime would provide four minutes of chances.

“Four minutes. We got four minutes to go,” she said. “Coach always says ‘Don’t look back. Always look forward.’”

Half: C 27, PR 22

End of regulation: C 50, PR 50

PR: Mac. Korf 12, Haugrud 11, Haiby 11, Weinrich 10, Huseby 9, Mad. Korf 8.

C: Brekken 2, Desrosier 2, Demarais 5, Klatt 11, Simmons 8, Boike 14, Heggie 14.

Glawe writes for the Bemidji Pioneer