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Girls basketball: PA prevails in undefeated showdown with SWC

EDGERTON -- In a matchup between two undefeated, state-ranked girls basketball teams, Pipestone Area mounted a late surge to defeat Southwest Christian 54-50 on Tuesday in Edgerton. In a recent poll, PA (10-0) was ranked No. 9 in Class 2A, while SWC (9-1) was ranked No. 6 in Class 1A.

The game was tied going into the final minute, when Pipestone Area forced a turnover and scored to take a 52-50 lead. Then, Southwest Christian fouled the Arrows, who made both free throws to reach the final score of 54-50.

Pipestone Area forced the Eagles to play at their pace, slowing down the usually high-scoring SWC with a possession-oriented half-court offense.

The Eagles’ lowest score of the season prior to Tuesday was 70 in a blowout defeat of Adrian in mid-December.

“We pressed them and tried to speed up the pace,” Southwest Christian head coach Denise Nerem said. “They just wanted to slow it down. They minimized our possessions and we were not able to play at our tempo.”

Rachel Skyberg led PA with 17 points, Shelby Bloemendaal scored 13 and Zoe Velde scored 10.

Hannah Nerem had 15 points, three rebounds and two steals for SWC. Jazlyn Prins scored nine points and added five rebounds and four steals.

Pipestone Area hosts Redwood Valley on Friday. Southwest Christian plays at Fulda on Thursday.

Pipestone Area 32 54Southwest Christian 28 50Worthington 55, Luverne 38

LUVERNE -- Worthington played the way it wants to play as it put on the defensive pressure and forced turnovers in its victory over Luverne.

“We came out and were aggressive and scored off turnovers,” Worthington head coach Eric Lindner said.

The Trojans led 32-19 at halftime and came out of the break firing on all cylinders as it scored the first six points of the second half.

The Worthington coach said his team did a good job attacking the boards and getting rebounds, despite Luverne having a taller lineup. Alangy Chan led the Trojans with 16 rebounds, and scored six points.

Emma Thuringer led the Trojans with 16 points, Ahmitara Alwal scored 11 and emily Shaffer scored 8.

Kami Sawtelle led the Cardinals with eight points.

Worthington (8-5) hosts Windom Area on Friday. Luverne (4-8) plays at Heron Lake-Okabena on Friday.

Worthington 32 55Luverne 19 38WORTHINGTON (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) -- Othow 0-1-0-2, Sauerbrei 0-1-0-2, A. Alwal 2-2-3-11, Thuringer 1-6-1-16, R. Alwal 0-3-1-7, Shaffer 1-2-1-8, Chan 0-3-0-6. Totals 4-19-5-55

LUVERENE (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) -- Schmuck 0-2-3-7, Remme 0-1-0-2, Anderson 0-2-1-5, Sawtelle 0-3-2-8, Sweeney 0-0-2-2, Petersen 0-1-1-3, Hustoft 0-1-3-5. Totals 0-12-14-38.