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Panthers use balance, top W-DC 76-71

     Strong finishes to the first half and second half gave the Park Rapids boys basketball team a 76-70 Mid-State Conference win over Wadena-Deer Creek Tuesday night at the Century School gym.

     W-DC jumped out to a 14-4 lead and led 29-20 before the Panthers closed the half with a 16-5 run to carry a 36-34 lead into the half.

     The Wolverines trailed 60-59 with 4:27 to play before the Panthers closed the game with a 16-11 run to seal the win.

     Three-pointers by Jared Reintiz and Blake Connell and a pair of three-point plays by Dylan Dumpprope gave W-DC a 14-4 lead with 13:53 to play in the first half.

     The Panthers countered with 3-pointers by Wyatt Derman and Tyler McCollum and two baskets by Rilee Johnson to cut the gap to 22-16 at the 9:02 mark before a 3-pointer by Reintiz gave the Wolverines a 27-18 advantage with 7:20 to go in the first half.

     Two 3-pointers by Tyler McCollum, a jumper and 3-pointer by Jordan McCollum, and baskets by Derek Porozinski and Johnson gave the Panthers a 36-34 lead at the break.

     After Dumpprope opened the second half with a three-point play to give W-DC a 37-36 lead, baskets by Zach Jewison and Johnson gave the Panthers a 40-37 advantage with 16:20 to play. Park Rapids would not trail again.

     A basket by Porozinski, a 3-pointer by Tyler McCollum, baskets by Jewison and Johnson, a three-point play by Bryce Brovitch, and baskets by Jordan McCollum and Johnson gave the Panthers a 56-44 lead with 9:28 to go.

     W-DC used a 3-pointer and jumper by Reintiz and two baskets by Jacob Goeden to cut the gap to 60-59 with 4:27 remaining before a 3-pointer by Derman, a three-point play by Jonson and a basket by Porozinski pushed Park Rapids’ lead to 68-59 with 3:12 left.

     Reintiz hit a jumper, a 3-pointer and two free throws as W-DC cut the gap to 72-70 with 34 seconds remaining before Derman, Johnson and Tyler McCollum hit a free throw each down the stretch to preserve the lead.

     The Panthers had four players score in double figures, led by Johnson’s 23 points and Tyler McCollum’s 13 points. Derman scored 11 points and Jordan McCollum added 10 points. Porozinski led the way with nine rebounds while Johnson had five assists and joined Jordan McCollum with three steals as the Panthers improved to 3-1 in conference play and 8-3 overall.

     Reintiz had 29 points and Dumpprope added 15 points for the Wolverines, who fell to 0-4 in conference games and 3-9 overall.

WADENA-DEER CREEK: Connell 4 1-2 10, Goeden 3 0-1 6, Laughlin 3 0-0 6, Reintiz 9 7-12 29, Dumpprope 5 4-6 15, Quincer 0 1-2 1, Redfield 1 2-2 4. Totals: 25 (FG), 15 for 25 (FT).

PARK RAPIDS: Derman 2 5-6 11, Johnson 9 5-7 23, J. McCollum 4 1-3 10, Porozinski 4 0-0 8, Jewison 3 0-2 6, Massie 0 0-0 0, T. McCollum 4 1-2 13, Brovitch 2 1-1 5. Totals: 28 for 59 (FG), 13 for 21 (FT).

Halftime: Park Rapids 36, W-DC 34. Three-pointers: Connell 1, Reintiz 4, Dumpprope 1, Derman 2, J. McCollum 1, T. McCollum 4. Team fouls: W-DC 17, Park Rapids 21. Fouled out: Goeden, Jewison. Rebounds: Park Rapids 34 (Porozinski 9, T. McCollum 7, J. McCollum 5, Johnson 4, Brovitch 3, Jewison 3, Derman 2, Massie 1). Assists: Park Rapids 14 (Johnson 5, J. McCollum 3, T. McCollum 2, Porozinski 2, Massie 1, Derman 1). Steals: Park Rapids 11 (Johnson 3, J. McCollum 3, Derman 2, Brovitch 2, Jewison 1). Blocked shots: Park Rapids 1 (Porozinski). Turnovers: Park Rapids 14.