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Park Rapids' Morgan Olson drove to the basket during Friday night's game against Staples-Motley.

Staples-Motley's defense clamps down on Panthers

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Staples-Motley's defense sparked two impressive runs as the Cardinals opened the Mid-State Conference girls basketball season with an 83-20 win at Park Rapids Friday night.

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The Cardinals, who forced 41 turnovers in the game, used a 38-9 run to build a 46-13 halftime lead before opening the second half with a 39-0 spurt.

Nicole Price's layup at the 17:36 mark gave the Panthers a 2-0 lead before 3-pointers by Jasmine McGillvray and Kelli Pearson sparked Staples-Motley to an 8-2 advantage with 113:16 to play in the first half.

A jumper by Katie Klein made it 8-4 at the 12:48 mark before the Cardinals went on a 21-3 run to take control. Pearson and Mikayla Wing hit 3-pointers and Mackenzie Holst scored twice inside to give the Cardinals a 29-7 edge with 6:08 to play in the first half.

After Hope Johnson hit two free throws for Park Rapids, the Cardinals closed the half with a 17-4 run. Pearson hit another 3-pointer and the Cardinals hit 10 free throws down the stretch to carry a 33-point lead into the break. Tori Lauderbaugh's layup with 2:48 to play led the Panthers.

Park Rapids, which had 24 turnovers in the first half, turned the ball over 16 more times at the start of the second half as the Cardinals capped a 43-0 run by scoring the first 39 points after the intermission. Seven different players scored on layups while McGillvray and KyAnn Nyhus hit 3-pointers as Staples-Motley led 81-13 with 3:23 to play.

The Panthers ended that run on Johnson's three-point play with 3:06 to play. Layups by Morgan Olson and Megan Grimes concluded the scoring for the Panthers.

Pearson (18), Nyhus (12) and Holst (11) hit doubles figures for the Cardinals, who had 11 different players score. The win lifted Staples-Motley to 2-0 on the season.

Johnson (5), Klein (4), Grimes (3) and Lauderbaugh (3) combined for 15 points for the Panthers, who fell to 0-2.

STAPLES-MOTLEY: Beachy 2 5-6 9, Wing 4 0-1 9, Pearson 7 1-2 18, McGillvray 2 0-0 6, Mathe 0 0-2 0, Holst 3 5-6 11, Peterson 1 0-0 2, Wolhowe 3 2-2 8, Nyhus 3 5-6 12, Zetah 1 0-0 2, Eagletail 1 0-0 2, Edin 2 0-0 4. Totals: 29 (FG), 18 for 25 (FT).

PARK RAPIDS: Grimes 1 1-2 3, Isaacson 0 0-0 0, Booge 0 0-0 0, Ridlon 0 0-2 0, Price 1 0-2 2, Rittgers 0 1-2 1, Olson 1 0-2 2, Johnson 1 3-4 5, Klein 2 0-0 4, Lauderbaugh 1 1-6 3, Hanson 0 0-0 0, Hilmanowski 0 0-0 0. Totals: 7 (FG), 6 for 20 (FT).

Halftime: S-M 46, Park Rapids 13. Three-point field goals: Wing 1, Pearson 3, McGillvray 2, Nyhus 1. Team fouls: S-M 16, Park Rapids 20.

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