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Chris Murphy, Published March 09 2013

Perham holds on, withstands last rush by Pelican Rapids

MOORHEAD – Perham boys basketball coach Dave Cresap said two words in his head many coaches have said before him when the free throws don’t fall in the final minutes: “Oh, no.”

Up nine points on Pelican Rapids with less than two minutes to play, Perham hit just 9 of 17 free-throw attempts to spark a Vikings’ 10-3 rally in the final minutes. The Yellowjackets were able to hold on for a 57-53 victory in the Minnesota Class 2A, Section 8 sub-section semifinals Saturday at Memorial Auditorium.

“You miss your first couple and then it becomes a mental game,” Cresap said. “We hit the ones we needed to though. It was a great win for this group of boys. This team is all new to the floor, the gymnasium and to the situation. It showed we can play with the best.”

Down 52-43 with less than two minutes to play, Pelican Rapids (19-9) went on a 10-3 run behind five points from Ryan Bruggeman, a 3-pointer from Devin Schell and a layup from Devon Hensch to pull within two with 12.5 seconds left. Tyler Glines sank two free throws for two of his 10 points to seal it for Perham (21-7) and make it back-to-back seasons in which the Yellowjackets ended the rival Vikings’ season.

“We’ve had a rivalry with them the past few years,” said Perham guard Josh Nordick, who had a team-high 21 points. “It is nice beating Pelican, especially my senior year, but we have a lot of work to do for Tuesday.”

Perham will play No. 2-ranked Hawley on Tuesday for the sub-section championship at Memorial Auditorium.

“They only have one loss for a reason,” Nordick said. “We’re going to have to play perfect basketball all night.”

P (21-7): Beachy 3 1-2, 9, Salathe 3 5-7 11, Hein 3 0-1 6, Nordick 9 1-2 21, Glines 2 4-7 10.

PR (19-9): Bruggeman 8 5-6 23, Schell 2 0-0 5, Haugen 6 0-2 13, Forsgren 4 2-2 10, Hensch 1 0-1 2.

Half: P 27, PR 22. 3-point goals: Bruggeman 2, Haugen 1, Schell 1, Beachy 2, Nordick 2, Glines 2. Total fouls: P 13, PR 16. Rebounds: P 18 (Hein 8), PR 24 (Bruggeman 10). Turnovers: P 4, PR 11.

Hawley 72, Barnesville 53

The last time Hawley forward Devon Pekas was on the floor at Memorial Auditorium, he was walking off it when the Nuggets starters were subbed out in a loss to Perham to end last season in the sub-section semifinals.

Pekas wasn’t going to let that happen again, as he poured in 25 points to lead No. 2-ranked Hawley over Barnesville 72-53 in the Class 2A, Section 8 sub-section semifinals Saturday at Memorial Auditorium.

“As soon as I saw (Barnesville) take out their players, I thought about how it was that same bench that that happened to us last year,” Pekas said. “It was good to be on the other end of that.”

Hawley (25-1) took a 28-22 lead into the half and led just 38-36 early in the second half, but the Nuggets slammed the door with a 24-9 run. Ben Ellefson scored 16 of his 22 points in the second half to help the Nuggets move on.

H (25-1): Harms 4 0-0 9, Ellefson 7 6-6 22, Pekas 10 2-4 25, Crompton 4 0-2 8, Teeples 1 2-2 4, Stoa 1 0-1 2, Regnier 0 2-4 2.

B (18-8): A. Martz 7 2-5 17, B. Sauve 1 0-1 2, Strand 3 5-5 12, K. Martz 4 4-6 13, Holland 1 2-2 5, P. Sauve 1 0-0 2, Ishaug 0 2-4 2.

Half: H 28, B 22. 3-point goals: Strand 1, K. Martz 1, A. Martz 1, Holland 1, Harms 1, Pekas 3, Ellefson 2. Total fouls: H 22, B 15. Rebounds: H 30 (Stoa 6), B 20 (A. Martz 6, Ishaug 6). Turnovers: H 8, B 13.


Chris Murphy at (701) 241-5548