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Perham downs Fergus Falls on late Johnson 3-ball

Katie Johnson sinks a three with five seconds remaining to start the season with a big win over the Otters.

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Perham's Stella Raser battles for position in the post with Fergus Falls' Ainsley Hansen during the Yellowjackets' home opener Friday night at The Hive. Submitted photo

Perham’s Katie Johnson drained a 3-point basket with five seconds remaining in regulation to lift the Yellowjackets to a 66-63 Section 8AA girls basketball victory over Fergus Falls at The Hive Friday, Jan. 15.

Johnson’s 3-pointer was her fourth of the night and came shortly after Fergus Falls’ Ellie Colbeck tied the game at 63 on a steal and a layup.

Colbeck got one last look at the buzzer to tie the game but her shot hit off the side of the rim.

The Yellowjackets had four players finish in double figures in the victory. Mya Morris led all Perham scorers with 20 points. Johnson added 14 points, while Grayce Mickelson and Willow Thiel finished with 10 points each.

Fergus Falls held a slim 23-20 lead at the break after Morris sank a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to cut the deficit.

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After shaking off the first half nerves, both teams caught fire in the second half.

Perham used a 9-0 run to turn a 49-44 deficit into a 53-49 lead. Johnson hit a pair of 3-pointers during the run, helping Perham grab its biggest lead of the night.

The Otters answered quickly and regained the lead.

After multiple lead changes, Perham built back up to a six-point gap, following a 3-pointer from Sydney Anderson, which came after a rebound on a missed free throw.

As time wound down, the Otters answered with a 3-pointer from Colbeck and eventually cut it to two on a basket by Colbeck.

Her steal and layup erased the lead, before Johnson sank the game-winner.

Perham outscored the Otters 46-40 in the second half.

Colbeck led the way for the Otters with 22 points, while Ainsley Hansen added 13 and Paige Pearson finished with 10 points.

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The Yellowjackets (1-0) host the Heart O’Lakes conference opener against Frazee (1-0) at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 21. The Hornets opened the season with a home victory over Park Rapids Area 54-42 .

Perham 66, Fergus Falls 63

FER 23 40 - 63

PER 20 46 - 66

FER-Ellie Colbeck 22, Ainsley Hansen 13, Logan Strom 9, Tori Ratz 8, Anna Anderson 1, Paige Pearson 10

3-pointers: Colbeck, Strom 3, Ratz 2. Free Throws: 9-12. Team Fouls 12.

PER-Mya Morris 20, Stella Raser 5, Willow Thiel 10, Sydney Anderson 7, Katie Johnson 14, Grayce Mickelson 10

3-pointers: Morris 6, Anderson 2, Johnson 4, Mickelson 1. Free Throws: 7-12. Team Fouls: 8.

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