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Robert Williams / Forum News Service, Published February 07 2014

Hawley sweeps season series against Perham in boys hoops

PERHAM, Minn. – Dillon Omberg sealed Perham’s fate from the line in the waning seconds, as Hawley swept the season series from Perham with a 62-58 victory in Heart O’ Lakes Conference boys basketball Friday night.

Hawley’s defensive zone forced a crucial four-minute gap in Yellowjackets scoring late in the second half and the Nuggets went on a 7-0 run to break a 44-all tie to lead 51-44 with five minutes to play.

Chris Kenntemich scored to bring Perham within two points with 13.9 seconds remaining after Ben Ellefson missed 3 of 4 free throws in the final minute.

Omberg gave Hawley a four-point cushion 60-56 with two free throws in the final 10 seconds. Tyler Glines drove the basket to make the score 60-58, and Omberg stepped up to the line with 2.8 seconds left and sunk two more free throws to seal the game.

“I was really nervous,” Omberg said. “Just got to stay confident.”

Hawley has won two games since last week’s locker room troubles and has reached the .500 mark overall at 9-9.

Three of the four Hawley players who quit the team last week were back and dressed for Friday’s game, including former starter Jordan Harms. None of the trio saw any game time and were not participating in warmups but were vocal and supportive in bench roles.

“It’s a team win,” said Ellefson. “It doesn’t matter who is doing what. It’s just a good team win. Hopefully, we can keep it going.”

The 1-3-1 and sagging 2-3 half court defensive zones utilized by Hawley wore out the Yellowjackets and forced the Perham offense to score from outside. It also kept Perham off the free throw line.

Perham attempted only four free throws, making all of them, compared to a 17-for-25 effort by Hawley.

Nick Bahls, Glines and Kenntemich combined for 12 3-pointers. Bahls was 7-for-16 on 3s and scored all 21 of his game-high points from behind the arc.

Ellefson led Hawley with 20 points, while Philip Teeples added 17. Omberg and Aaron Regnier each scored 10.

“It was a good team win for us,” Ellefson said. “It was a lot of hard work both offensively and defensively. We just came out to play. Down the stretch Dillon (Omberg) made some big free throws.”

“We’ve just got to stay focused, keep getting better every day in practice, work hard and come together,” said Omberg.

There were four lead changes in the second half, and the score was tied three times, the final tie being at 44 points. Hawley led the final six minutes after Teeples scored and was fouled for a 47-44 lead.

Hawley did much of the same in the first half, breaking a 16-all tie and holding on to the lead for a 30-29 advantage at the break.

The loss prevented Perham from taking sole possession of first place in the HOL. Pelican Rapids moves into the lead at 7-3. Perham, Barnesville and Hawley are all a half-game back at 6-3.

Half: H 30, P 29

H: Ellefson 20, Teeples 17, Omberg 12, Regnier 10, Olson 2, Leaf 1.

P: Bahls 21, Glines 11, Kenntemich 10, Salathe 10, Muer 6.

Williams is the sports editor for the Perham Focus