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Late run carries Cardinals to 71-64 win over Panthers

The Panthers' Jeff Haas (5) tried to take a rebound away from Staples-Motley's Griffin Webster during Thursday night's game. Vance Carlson / Enterprise

A 9-0 run late in the game carried Staples-Motley to a 71-64 Mid-State Conference and Section 8AA South win over the Park Rapids boys basketball team Thursday night at the Area High School gym.

This game featured four ties and four lead changes in the first half and three ties and four lead changes in the second half before the Cardinals took control at the end.

A pair of 3-pointers by Gabe Bagstad and a basket off a rebound by Jeff Haas gave the Panthers a 10-3 lead with 13:46 to play in the first half before Staples-Motley responded with an 11-2 run as 3-pointers by Josh Lombard, Brayden Losh and Derek Kennedy provided a 14-12 lead at the 10:45 mark.

A layup by Bagstad and a basket off a rebound by Jake Reish were offset by a layup and 3-pointer by Griffin Webster as the Cardinals led 19-16 with 9:25 left in the first half. After a layup and 3-pointer by Lombard gave Staples-Motley at 27-18 lead at the 5:50 mark, the Panthers responded with a 12-1 spurt as a layup by Preston Renneberg, a layup off a steal and a 3-pointer by Bagstad, a 3-pointer by Will Pickar and a layup off a steal by Tristin Persons provided a 30-28 lead with 3:25 left.

A layup by Renneberg and another 3-pointer by Pickar kept the Panthers in front 35-34 at the 1:02 mark before Staples-Motley closed the half with jumpers by Reid Busker and Javier Fernandez to carry a 40-35 lead into the break.

Layups by Persons and Bagstad, a jumper by Jason Haas, two layups by Bagstad, a layup by Persons, a jumper by Jason Haas, and a layup by Reish gave the Panthers a 53-51 lead with 10:18 to play.

Losh hit back-to-back 3-pointers to give the Cardinals a 57-53 lead at the 9:19 mark before a jumper and three-point play by Jason Haas put Park Rapids in front 58-57 with 7:35 remaining.

With the game tied at 59-59 at the 6:41 mark, Losh hit a 3-pointer and Webster scored inside as the Cardinals claimed a 68-59 lead with 1:38 left. Jason Haas hit a jumper and Carter Novak connected on a 3-pointer to cut the gap to 69-64 with 22 seconds left before two free throws by Lombard sealed the win.

Webster scored 24 points while Losh (16), Lombard (13) and Kennedy (12) also hit double figures for the Cardinals, who hit 10 3-pointers in the game. Staples-Motley, which avenged a 59-55 loss to the Panthers on Jan. 11, improved to 4-4 in section play, 4-5 in the conference and 9-13 overall.

Bagstad finished with 23 points and Jason Haas added 13 points (all in the second half) to lead the Panthers, who fell to 7-4 against section teams, 3-6 in the conference and 12-11 overall.

Pequot Lakes (8-2) and Detroit Lakes (7-2) top the conference standings while Perham, Breckenridge and Osakis are ahead of Park Rapids and Staples-Motley in the section standings.

STAPLES-MOTLEY: Lombard 4 2-3 13, Kennedy 3 4-5 12, Busker 1 0-0 2, Webster 7 9-12 24, Losh 6 0-0 16, Fernandez 1 2-2 4. Totals: 22 (FG), 17 for 22 (FT).

PARK RAPIDS: Je. Haas 2 0-2 4, Renneberg 2 0-0 4, Ja. Haas 5 3-4 13, Bagstad 9 2-2 23, Persons 3 0-0 6, Novak 1 0-0 3, Reish 2 1-3 5, Kosel 0 0-0 0, Johnson 0 0-0 0, Pickar 2 0-0 6. Totals: 26 (FG), 6 for 11 (FT).

Halftime: S-M 40, Park Rapids 35. Three-pointers: Lombard 3, Kennedy 2, Webster 1, Losh 4, Bagstad 3, Novak 1, Pickar 2. Team fouls: S-M 13, Park Rapids 19.