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Bearcats girls fall to EGF Green Wave, defeat Northern Freeze

By Mark Johnson, coach
KCC 97 – EGF 101 2 OT
It was a wild one at the Kittson Central gym Monday, Feb. 5. KCC hosted the EGF Green Wave in a rematch of a heavy weight battle on Dec. 15. The two teams battled to the buzzer that night with the Green Wave getting the 84-79 win. This time around, the two teams battled to three buzzers with the final one coming at the end of double overtime.
The Bearcats got off to a quick start, scoring off the opening tip and kept the offense producing for the entire evening. The Bearcats never trailed in the first half. KCC and EGF kept exchanging punches in the opening stanza and the Bearcats held a 47-44 lead at the break.
The second half continued to be a battle. EGF took a lead early, but the Bearcats did not waver. KCC kept attacking the basket and produced points either on made baskets or at the free throw line. The Bearcats held a three-point lead late in regulation when the Green Wave knocked down a contested three-point shot to knot the game at 79-79. The Bearcats got the final shot of regulation but couldn’t get it to fall. The two teams battled through the first overtime period exchanging baskets. Every time one team took the lead the other team had an answer. KCC had the ball in their hands for the final shot of the first overtime period just like regulation but weren’t able to tip the scoreboard in their favor.
The battle continued into the second overtime period. A banked in three-point shot by the Green Wave late in the extra period gave EGF just enough separation to escape with a 101-97 win.
We obviously showed our ability to put the ball in the basket. We also showed that we will never back down. Anyone who made it to the game got their money’s worth.
Scoring leaders: McKinley Folland 23, Morgan Turn 19, Greta Kuznia 16, Lily Peterson 14, Kaydence White 14, Aliyah Vig 4, Berlyn Strege 3, Afton Lindgren 2, Ellen Hilman 2
Rebound leaders: Folland 14, Peterson and Kuznia 4 each
Assist leaders: Strege 7, Folland 5

KCC 65 – NF 63
The Bearcats returned to action on Friday, Feb. 9 in Lancaster to host the Northern Freeze. The Freeze took the first matchup of the season in early January. The Bearcats were looking to even the score.
The Bearcats struggled early in the game trying to get inside the 3-2 zone of the Freeze. The Freeze opened an early 8-2 lead and had the Bearcats looking up hill. KCC responded and started to attack the basket on the offensive end, and defensively cranked up the pressure. The Bearcats made up the difference and took the lead at 13-12. The two teams exchanged a few leads and then the Bearcats started to build a bit of a working margin to push the lead to 31-26 at the break.
KCC played with the lead for most of the second half, but the Freeze tied up the game at 52-52 with 6:25 left to play. The game remained a single possession game for the next 5 minutes of play with the Freeze holding the advantage.
With 1:21 left in the game, the Bearcats knocked down a corner three-pointer to tie the game at 61-61. KCC got a defensive stop and followed it up with a good possession and a basket from the low block to go up two, 63-61. Another defensive stop and a pair of free throws put the Bearcats up 65-61 with under 25 seconds to play. The Freeze had the final possession of the game with 3.5 seconds left and no timeouts. KCC conceded the final score of the game and let the clock expire for the 65-63 win.
It was an important win for the girls. It will eliminate head-to-head as a tie breaker when it comes to tournament time and evens the score with a pretty good basketball team.
Scoring leaders: Greta Kuznia 21, Morgan Turn 15, Hanna Warnke 6, Kaydence White 6, McKinley Folland 6, Lily Peterson 4, Berlyn Strege 3, Ellen Hilman 2, Aliyah Vig 2
Rebound leaders: Folland 9, Turn 5
Assist leaders: Warnke and Turn 3 each


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