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Sauk Centre takes the Grand8 title, Perham finishes third

Perham's Gabby DeBoer and Lisa Meader tie up the ball against Holdingford's Rachel Hellmann during Perham's 45-39 victory over Holdingford. Jason Groth/FOCUS

The Perham Yellowjackets used a dominant first nine minutes of the game and held on for a 45-39 victory over the Holdingford Huskers in the third place game of the Grand8 Holiday Classic in Perham.

The Yellowjackets stormed out to a 22-3 lead in the first nine minutes of the game, only to see the Huskers respond with a 13-0 to close out the first half.

“It was a good win. Holdingford has been coming to our tournament for three years and every year they have brought a better team,” Perham head coach T.J. Super said. “I was a little worried about our energy, but we didn’t lack any energy. We came out with all cylinders firing and jumped out to a really hot start. Something happened in the middle where things slowed down a bit, I really can’t pinpoint what it was, but we gutted it out and got out with a nice victory.”

Lacy Richter works inside for a basket against Holdingford.

Lacy Richter led the way for the Yellowjackets. She finished the game with 17 points. She hit four 3-pointers. She helped spark the Yellowjackets in the second half when the offense went cold. According to Super, it wasn’t just her scoring that was key in the victory over Holdingford.

“Lacy played a really good game. It was just her shooting, she handled the ball really well,” Super said. “She really defended well and did a lot of good things. She was really active tonight. When you put the ball in the basket, that helps too.”

The Yellowjackets may have turned the corner at the free throw line. It was a season long struggle, but the Yellowjackets hit on nine of their 11 attempts, a day after hitting on 14 of 16 attempts. Super said it can be attributed to the girls putting an added emphasis on it in practice.

Aixa Kolofale drives to the basket against Holdingford.

“We haven’t been shooting up to what our expectations are and what I think the girls can do,” Super said. “It was ready for the tide to turn on that. Hopefully, that’s how it is going forward. The girls have been working hard on that and focused on it. That’s a part of the game that we know we needed to improve, so it was nice to see.”

The Yellowjackets scored the first 14 points behind strong shooting and excellent defense. The Yellowjackets spread the ball around in the early going and stretched the lead to 22-3 after a 3-pointer from Kolbey Bormann. Richter had eight of her 17 points coming in the first few minutes, hitting an inside jumper and a pair of 3-pointers.

However, the Huskers rallied back behind Grace Gerads and Marissa Gerads. They combined for 23 of the team’s 39 points. Grace finished with 13 points, while Marissa added 10 points.

Perham stretched the lead back to 11 points, but the Huskers cut it down to five points, however, they could not get any closer in the final minutes of the game.

The Yellowjackets improved their season mark to 5-3 overall with the victory. They return to action on Tuesday, Jan. 2 when they take on Pequot Lakes at 5:45 p.m. in Pequot Lakes.

Holdingford 22 17--39

Perham 28 17--45

HLD-Rachel Hellmann 4, Grace Gerads 13, Marissa Gerads 10, Courtney Thielen 8, Carolynn Becker 4

3-pointers: M. Gerads, Thielen. Free Throws: 8-10. Team Fouls:16. Fouled Out: None

PER-Kolbey Bormann 3, Lacy Richter 17, Gabby DeBoer 9, Mesa Schultz 7, Aixa Kolofale 6, Rachel Muer 3

3-pointers: Bormann, Richter 4, Muer. Free Throws: 9-11. Team Fouls: 10. Fouled Out: None

Sauk Centre 80, Roseau 70

It was a measure of revenge for the top-ranked Sauk Centre Mainstreeters when they captured the Grand8 Holiday Classic Championship with an 80-70 victory over the Roseau Rams on Dec. 28 in Perham.

It was a rematch of last year’s Class AA Championship which was won by the Rams, but there would be no denying the Mainstreeters in the rematch of the two outstate powerhouses. Sauk Centre built up an 18 point first half lead and had an answer for the Rams in the second half whenever they tried to surge back.

A balanced offensive attack led by four players in double figures gave the Rams fits on the defensive end. Kelsey Peschel finished with 20 points, while Tori Peschel added 18. Maesyn Thiesen was deadly from the 3-point line, hitting five of them. She finished with 19 points. Many of Thiesen’s 3-pointers were of the dagger variety. Whenever Roseau made a run, Thiesen countered with a key triple. Julia Dammann added 12 points as well for the Mainstreeters.

Leading the way for the Rams was ninth grader Katie Borowicz. She finished with a game high of 26 points. She hit five 3-pointers and played a key role in the Rams trying to mount a second half comeback. She scored 16 of 26 points in the second half. She was strong offensively, but played a big role on the defensive end as well. Kacie Borowicz added 14 points in the loss for the Rams.

The Mainstreeters pressure defense helped spark a big first half run. They turned a 9-7 deficit into a 28-15 lead quickly turning defense into quick offense in transition.

The Rams cut the lead down to 12 points, but could never get it into single digits in the second half as the Mainstreeters picked up their 10th win of the season. The loss moves Roseau to 6-4 overall on the season.

Roseau 26 34--70

Sauk Centre 44 36--80

ROS-Victoria Johnson 7, Kacie Borowicz 14, Julia Braaten 4, Katie Borowicz 26, Haley Ostgaard 2, Emma Waling 7, Mya Hough 4, McKayla Christianson 6

3-pointers: Kacie Borowicz, Katie Borowicz 5, Waling. Free Throws: 7-10. Team Fouls: 16. Fouled Out: None

SKC-Hannah Dammann 2, Kelsey Peschel 20, Kenzie Schmiesing 7, Tori Peschel 18, Maesyn Thiesen 19, Julia Dammann 12, Michaela Dammann 1

3-pointers: K. Peschel 4, Schmiesing, Thiesen 5

Jason Groth

 Groth is a Minnesota Newspaper Association award-winning Sports Editor of the Perham Focus and the Wadena Pioneer Journal. Groth worked in Grand Rapids as the Sports Director at KOZY/KMFY radio for two years and prior to that he was the Sports Editor/Writer for the Grand Rapids Herald-Review for seven years. 

(218) 346-5900 x223
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