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Park Rapids' Scott Wolff (42) blocked a shot by Nevis' Matt Gustafson during Thursday night's game.

Tigers hit free throws down stretch to hold off Panthers

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Poor offensive showings in the first half led to a pair of losses for the Park Rapids boys basketball team.

The Panthers were held to 14 points in the first half in a 45-40 loss at Nevis Thursday night and scored only 18 points in the first half in a 63-51 Mid-State Conference loss to Staples-Motley at Staples Friday night.

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Park Rapids fell to 1-13 on the season.

Free throws seal Nevis' win

Taylor Chase and Gerald Beckerleg combined to hit 10 free throws down the stretch to preserve Nevis' win over the Panthers Thursday night.

Two baskets by Chase gave Nevis a quick 9-2 lead before two inside baskets by Chris Goplerud and a pair of jumpers by Scott Wolff helped the Panthers carry a 14-13 lead into the break.

A 3-pointer by Becker and jumper by Bryon Schuldt gave the Tigers an 18-14 lead at the start of the second half. Three baskets by Matt Gustafson and two field goals by Jake Keranen gave the Tigers a 30-26 lead with 9:13 to play. Kyle Goplerud hit three field goals for the Panthers during that stretch.

A jumper by Andy Waller pulled the Panthers to within 32-30 with 5:49 left before Chase hit five free throws and Beckerleg hit two free throws to give the Tigers a 42-32 advantage with 1:21 remaining.

Baskets by Kyle Goplerud and Tyler McCollum made it 42-36 with 1:03 showing before Beckerleg's two free throws with 47 seconds remaining sealed the win.

Becker and Chase scored 11 points each while Chase led the way with seven rebounds. Schuldt added six rebounds and three steals while Gustafson had six steals and three assists. Becker also chipped in three steals as Nevis improved to 5-7 on the season.

"Park Rapids' size really seemed to bother us as we just couldn't' get any shots to drop in the first half," said Nevis head coach Scott Kramer. "We were able to get things going early in the second half. Making a few baskets allowed us to get into our press, which gave them some trouble and we were able to convert a few of these into easy baskets."

McCollum had 11 points and seven rebounds, Kyle Goplerud scored 10 points, Chris Goplerud pulled down 10 rebounds and had four assists, and Wolff blocked three shots to lead the Panthers.

PARK RAPIDS: K. Goplerud 4 2-6 10, Peterson 0 1-2 1, C. Goplerud 4 0-0 8, Waller 2 0-2 4, McCollum 5 0-0 11, Long 0 0-0 0, Bergquist 0 0-0 0, Ridlon 0 0-0 0, Wolff 3 0-0 6. Totals: 18 for 50 (FG), 3 for 10 (FT).

NEVIS: Gustafson 3 0-4 6, Schuldt 1 0-0 2, Becker 4 2-3 11, T. Chase 2 7-11 11, Keranen 4 1-2 9, Hine 0 0-0 0, C. Chase 0 0-0 0, Beckerleg 1 4-4 6, Feder 0 0-0 0. Totals: 15 (FG), 14 for 24 (FT).

Halftime: Park Rapids 14, Nevis 13. Three-point field goals: McCollum 1, Becker 1. Team fouls: Park Rapids 19, Nevis 16. Fouled out: Waller. Rebounds: Park Rapids 35 (C. Goplerud 10, McCollum 7, Wolff 6, K. Goplerud 5, Waller 3, Ridlon 2, Bergquist 1, Peterson 1). Assists: Park Rapids 11 (C. Goplerud 4, Peterson 3, Ridlon 2, K. Goplerud 2). Steals: Park Rapids 5 (K. Goplerud 1, C. Goplerud 1, Waller 1, Wolff 1, McCollum 1). Blocked shots: Park Rapids 4 (Wolff 3, McCollum 1). Turnovers: Park Rapids 16.

Cardinals hold on for win

A 14-0 run starting late in the first half sparked the Cardinals past Park Rapids for the second time this season.

Four baskets by Wolff and a 3-pointer by McCollum kept the Panthers within 19-18 with 2:12 to play in the first half before Staples-Motley closed the half with an 8-0 run for a 27-18 advantage.

Staples-Motley opened the second half with a 6-0 run before Seth Auger's 3-pointer gave the Cardinals a 39-22 advantage with 12:32 to play.

The Cardinals maintained a 56-41 lead before 3-pointers by McCollum and Mason Long cut the deficit to 59-48 with 2:26 showing.

Park Rapids managed only a free throw by Wolff and a layup by Jordan Bergquist the rest of the way in falling to 1-5 in conference games.

Auger led a balanced attack with 13 points as the Cardinals improved to 2-3 in the conference and 2-11 overall.

McCollum had 16 points and eight rebounds while Chris Goplerud pulled down 13 rebounds and had four assists and three steals to lead the Panthers.

PARK RAPIDS: K. Goplerud 3 0-0 6, Peterson 0 0-0 0, C. Goplerud 2 4-6 8, Waller 1 5-9 7, McCollum 7 0-1 16, Otterness 0 0-0 0, Long 1 0-0 3, Bergquist 1 0-0 2, Ridlon 0 0-0 0, Gartner 0 0-1 0, Wolff 4 1-3 9. Totals: 19 for 56 (FG), 10 for 22 (FT).

STAPLES-MOTLEY: Janssen 3 3-5 9, Huber 2 1-4 5, Vasquez 1 0-0 2, Auger 4 2-3 13, Longbella 4 0-0 8, Wick 1 4-6 6, Schmitz 2 0-0 4, Parker 1 0-0 2, Busker 4 0-1 8, Coughlin 1 0-0 3, Borders 1 1-5 3. Totals: 24 (FG), 11 for 24 (FT).

Halftime: S-M 27, Park Rapids 18. Three-point field goals: McCollum 2, Long 1, Auger 3, Coughlin 1. Team fouls: Park Rapids 19, S-M 16. Rebounds: Park Rapids 35 (C. Goplerud 13, McCollum 8, Waller 4, K. Goplerud 3, Wolff 3, Peterson 2, Long 1, Gartner 1). Assists: Park Rapids 11 (C. Goplerud 4, Long 2, McCollum 2, K. Goplerud 1, Waller 1, Wolff 1). Steals: Park Rapids 8 (C. Goplerud 3, Peterson 2, McCollum 2, Gartner 1). Blocked shots: Park Rapids 1 (Wolff). Turnovers: Park Rapids 18.

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