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Boys Basketball: Basket at buzzer lifts New York Mills past Menahga

The Braves fell to 5-4 in Park Region Conference play with the heartbreaking 70-68 loss.

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Menahga's Connor Korvela (5) put a layup over Parkers Prairie's Jacob Wagner during a game on Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022.
Vance Carlson / Park Rapids Enterprise<br/>

NEW YORK MILLS – Tate Olson’s long 3-pointer at the buzzer gave New York Mills a 70-68 Park Region Conference win over the Menahga boys basketball team on Friday, Jan. 28.

Olson took an inbounds pass, dribbled past midcourt and heaved a shot that banked in for the game-winner as the state’s No. 9-ranked Class A team remained undefeated in conference play.

Nick Wurdock’s jumper, three-point play and 3-pointer along with a pair of baskets by Christian Johnson and layups by Connor Korvela and Alec Aho gave Menahga a 17-10 lead. Two 3-pointers by Johnson, a jumper and a 3-pointer by Knaylor Howard, and two baskets by Wurdock kept the Braves in front 32-30 at the break.

Three-point plays by Aho and Ryan Tolkkinen, a 3-pointer by Korvela, and two jumpers by Wurdock pushed Menahga’s lead to 45-35. NYM responded with a 16-2 run to claim a 51-47 advantage before layups by Aho, Korvela and Tolkkinen and 3-pointers by Wurdock and Korvela tied the game at 65-65. Wurdock’s three-point play gave Menahga a 68-67 lead with 3.5 seconds remaining before Olson hit the game-winner.

Wurdock finished with 26 points and four assists, Johnson scored 11 points and had five steals, Korvela scored 10 points and had eight rebounds, and Aho had eight rebounds and six blocked shots as Menahga fell to 5-4 in the conference and 8-8 overall.

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Olson’s 26 points, 18 rebounds and eight steals lifted NYM to 8-0 in the conference and 14-4 overall. Jonah Johnson added 19 points for the Eagles, who overcame 22 turnovers.

MENAHGA: Tolkkinen 2 1-1 5, Johnson 4 1-2 11, Korvela 4 0-0 10, Wurdock 9 6-6 26, Aho 3 1-1 7, Howard 2 2-2 7, Berttunen 1 0-1 2. Totals: 25 for 64 (FG), 11 for 13 (FT).

NEW YORK MILLS: Noffsinger 4 1-4 9, Olson 9 6-9 26, Ehnert 1 0-0 3, Johnson 8 3-5 19, Hensch 3 2-2 9, Kopveiler 2 0-1 4. Totals: 27 for 56 (FG), 12 for 21 (FT).

Halftime: Menahga 32, NYM 30. Three-pointers: Johnson 2, Korvela 2, Wurdock 2, Howard 1, Olson 2, Ehnert 1, Hensch 1. Team fouls: Menahga 14, NYM 15. Rebounds: Menahga 29 (Korvela 8, Aho 8, Wurdock 5, Johnson 3, Tolkkinen 2, Berttunen 2, Howard 1). Assists: Menahga 12 (Wurdock 4, Howard 3, Aho 2, Tolkkinen 1, Johnson 1, Korvela 1). Steals: Menahga 11 (Johnson 5, Tolkkinen 3, Aho 3). Blocked shots: Menahga 7 (Aho 6, Korvela 1). Turnovers: Menahga 20, NYM 22.

Parkers Prairie prevails

MENAHGA – Parkers Prairie led from start to finish in a 66-56 win over the Braves on Thursday, Jan. 27.

Menahga trailed 17-6 before 3-pointers by Howard and Johnson cut the gap to 23-15. Parkers Prairie led 31-16 before layups by Wurdock, Tolkkinen and Aho, a 3-pointer by Howard, and a jumper by Johnson made it 36-28 at the half.

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Nick Wurdock (12) put up a jumper during Menahga's game against Parkers Prairie on Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022.
Vance Carlson / Park Rapids Enterprise<br/>

The Braves trailed 42-33 before Wurdock’s two 3-pointers and layup and Bodie Berttunen’s 3-pointer closed the margin to 50-47 with 6:59 to play. The Panthers followed with a 15-6 run to put the game away.

Wurdock’s 15 points and eight rebounds; Howard’s 10 points, four steals and three assists; and Aho’s 10 rebounds paced the Braves.

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Christian Johnson (4) dribbled the ball past half court during Menahga's game against Parkers Prairie on Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022.
Vance Carlson / Park Rapids Enterprise<br/>

Mason Arens posted a double-double of 20 points and 12 rebounds while Jacob Wagner (15) and Dylan Debilzen (12) also scored in double figures as Parkers Prairie improved to 9-5.

PARKERS PRAIRIE: Debilzen 4 2-3 12, Guenther 2 0-0 4, Arens 9 1-5 20, Wagner 5 2-6 15, Thoennes 0 4-6 4, Harrington 1 0-0 2, Ruckheim 2 0-0 5, DeBoer 2 0-0 4. Totals: 25 for 56 (FG), 9 for 20 (FT).

MENAHGA: Tolkkinen 1 4-8 6, Johnson 3 2-4 9, Korvela 3 0-1 6, Wurdock 5 2-4 15, A. Aho 3 1-2 7, Howard 4 0-0 10, Berttunen 1 0-0 3, B. Aho 0 0-0 0. Totals: 20 for 59 (FG), 9 for 19 (FT).

Halftime: Parkers Prairie 36, Menahga 28. Three-pointers: Debilzen 2, Arens 1, Wagner 3, Ruckheim 1, Johnson 1, Wurdock 3, Howard 2, Berttunen 1. Team fouls: Parkers Prairie 15, Menahga 21. Fouled out: Tolkkinen, A. Aho. Rebounds: Menahga 30 (A. Aho 10, Wurdock 8, Johnson 5, Korvela 4, Tolkkinen 2, Howard 1). Assists: Menahga 10 (Howard 3, Wurdock 2, A. Aho 2, Berttunen 2, Johnson 1). Steals: Menahga 12 (Howard 4, Korvela 3, Wurdock 3, Tolkkinen 1, A. Aho 1). Blocked shots: Menahga 5 (A. Aho 3, Johnson 1, Korvela 1). Turnovers: Parkers Prairie 22, Menahga 15.

1982 Dawson-Boyd High School graduate
1987 Moorhead State University graduate
Sports reporter for Park Rapids Enterprise since 1987
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