Lady Norse win again in playoff race



GRAND RAPIDS — The Lady Norse set themselves up for a shot at the No. 3 spot in the MCAC North Saturday with an 83-42 win over Itasca.

Hibbing’s loss to Central Lakes on Friday and to Northland Saturday moved them into a tie with the Lady Norse at 6-5 in the division. The two teams will meet on Wednesday in Virginia where the winner will take sole possession of third place as the end of the regular season regular season moves ever closer.

In Saturday’s contest, Mesabi Range dominated thanks to the efforts of Madisen Overbye outside and Haley Hansen in the paint.

Overbye finished with a game-high 32 points and knocked down eight three pointers along the way. The 6-foot-2 Hansen finished with the next highest with 27 points coming from down low.

Jordin McCartney led the Lady Vikings with 15 points. Caroline Cheney chipped in with 11.

Lady Norse head coach Brad Matuszak said his team should be excited about the opportunity to play meaningful games down the stretch.

“It’s fun to be playing for something at this time of the year,” Matuszak said Saturday. “With the way the season started with injuries and illness, the girls should be proud of how they’ve been playing lately. That’s just the way our girls are. They’re not going to give up. Now we have everyone back and we’re playing some good ball at the right time.”

The Lady Norse (6-9, 6-5 MCAC North) will host Hibbing on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m.

MRC 21 22 20 20 — 83

ICC 8 18 8 8 — 42

Mesabi Range: Haley Hansen 27, Christianna Monger 2, Hailey Aho 8, Madisen Overbye 32, Jazmine Manning 8, Olivia Suihkonen 6; Three pointers: Overbye 8, Manning 2, Aho 1; Free throws: 8-26; Total fouls: 14; Fouled out: none.

Itasca: Jordin McCartney 15, Maddi Taylor 6, Tayleona Frazier 3, Caroline Cheney 11, Haley Murray 7; Three pointers: McCartney 2, Frazier 1, Murray 1; Free throws: 4-7; Total fouls: 18; Fouled out: none.


Itasca 78,

Mesabi Range 64

At Grand Rapids, Dejsani Beamon put down 20 points for the Norsemen Saturday, but it wasn’t enough as they fell to Itasca, 78-64.

Beamon’s 20 led Mesabi Range College. William Howard added 15.

Brian Pinkney led all scorers with 32 points for Itasca. Terrell Burney finished with 11.

Mesabi Range (3-18, 2-10 MCAC North) will host Hibbing Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.

MRC 24 40 — 64

MRC 41 37 — 78

Mesabi Range: William Howard 15, Dejsani Beamon 20, Mayan White 7, Jaylen Williams 8, Mamoudou Cisse 5, Josue Collazo 4, Taquairius Wair 2; Three pointers: Beamon 1, White 1, Williams 1; Free throws: 17-23; Total fouls: 24; Fouled out: Howard, Wair.

Itasca: Daniel Ricard 3, Brian Pinkney 32, Zion Brown 9, Terrell Burney 11, Nick Grant 8, Tri’Mel Charlton 4, Eric Chenault 6, Samir Brown 5; Three pointers: Pinkney 4, Burney 2, Ricard 1, Z. Brown 1, Chenault 1, S. Brown 1; Free throws: 16-25; Total fouls: 20; Fouled out: none.


Mesabi East 73

Crosby-Ironton 64

At Crosby, the Mesabi East girls’ basketball team used a standout performance from Ava Hill to take down the home standing Crosby-Ironton Rangers.

Hill led all scorers in the contest with 33 points for the Giants. Hannah Hannuksela added 15 for Mesabi East.

Crosby-Ironton was led by Lily Peterson with 18. Jacey Rydberg added 15, Tori Decent finished with 13 and Karli Nixon chipped in with 10.

Mesabi East (18-4) will host North Woods on Monday.

ME 34 39 — 73

CI 34 30 — 64

Mesabi East: Ava Hill 33, Meghan Walker 8, Hannah Hannuksela 15, Kora Forsline 9, Stevie Hakala 4, Mia Mattfield 2; Three pointers: Hill 5, Walker 1, Hannuksela 2; Free throws: 16-19; Total fouls: 9; Fouled out: Hannuksela.

Crosby-Ironton: Lily Peterson 18, Mya Decent 7, Karli Nixon 10, Jacey Rydberg 15, Tori Decent 14; Three pointers: Peterson 1, M. Decent 1, Nixon 2, T. Decent 2; Free throws: 12-17; Total fouls: 17; Fouled out: none.


Aitkin 68

Virginia 63,

At Virginia, the Blue Devils and the Gobblers played to a 28-28 tie after one half Saturday afternoon, but Aitkin got the last laugh, defeating Virginia, 68-63.

Jayden Bernard led the Blue Devils with 25 points, including seven made three pointers. Joe Hafdahl added 16. Mason Carlson chipped in with 10.

Kade Hopperstad led all scorers in the contest with 31 points for the Gobblers, including seven made threes of his own. Hunter Nissen finished with 15.

Virginia head coach Derek Aho said his team executed their game plan of stopping Mannie Ukutegbe (20 points Friday vs. International Falls) and held him to just five points Saturday. However, they had no answer when the Gobblers ran their offense through Hopperstad.

“We focused so much on [Ukutegbe] after last night. Then we couldn’t do anything with Hopperstad lighting us up on the three point line.”

In addition, the Devils came out sluggish and gave up too many free throws according to Aho.

“We were flat in the beginning. We had to battle back and we got it to an even game at the half which is what we wanted. But it was really physical and it’s tough to give them 28 free throws. They made 18 of them and that’s 18 free points for them.”

Virginia (15-5) will be in Eveleth on Tuesday for a date with the Golden Bears.

AHS 28 40 — 68

VHS 28 35 — 63

Aitkin: Logan Gabrio 8, Jon Blanchette 2, Mannie Ukutegbe 5, Hunter Nissen 15, Owen Hagen 7, Kade Hopperstad 31; Three pointers: Hopperstad 7, Nissen 3, Gabrio 1; Free throws: 18-26; Total fouls: 9; Fouled out: none.

Virginia: Joe Hafdahl 16, Nick Peters 6, Daniel Squires 4, Jack Tomen 1, Jayden Bernard 25, Mason Carlson 10, Kyle Williams 1; Three pointers: Hafdahl 4, Bernard 7, Carlson 2; Free throws: 8-12; Total fouls: 18; Fouled out: none.

Eveleth-Gilbert 74,

Mounds Park Academy 49

At St. Paul, the Eveleth-Gilbert boys’ basketball team picked up a road win Saturday, taking down Mounds Park Academy, 74-49.

Jake Sickel led all scorers in the contest with 18 points for the Golden Bears. Will Bittmann finished with 14. Carter Mavec added 13.

Dhruv Muppidi paced the Panthers with 17 points. Shane Fruchterman finished with 13.

Eveleth-Gilbert (8-12) will host Virginia Tuesday night.

EG 42 32 — 74

MPA 24 25 — 49

Eveleth-Gilbert: Carter Mavec 13, Griffin Krmpotich 1, Andrew Larsen 2, AJ Roen 7, Zach Lindseth 6, Carter Orent 2, Carter Flannigan 4, Josh Creer-Oberstar 5, Jake Sickel 18, Will Bittmann 14, Cameron Peterson 2; Three pointers: Mavec 3, Creer-Oberstar 1, Sickel 2; Free throws: 14-25; Total fouls: 9; Fouled out: none.

Mounds Park Academy: Jay Green 3, Ayoub Mahamoud 2, Austin Lee 2, Shane Fruchterman 13, Dhruv Muppidi 17, Hunter Erickson 4, Alec Nicoski 8; Three pointers: Green 1, Fruchterman 3, Muppidi 3; Free throws: 2-5; Total fouls: 19; Fouled out: none.

Bigfork 65,

Silver Bay 61

At Bigfork, the Bigfork boys’ basketball team picked up a narrow win Saturday, downing Silver Bay 65-61.

Jared Lovdahl finished with 20 points for the Huskies. Liam Prato added 14. Jackson Lovdahl finished with 12.

Mason Ollman led all scorers in the contest with 37 points for the Mariners.

Bigfork (6-14) will host Cromwell-Wright on Tuesday.

SB 27 34 — 61

BHS 29 36 — 65

Silver Bay: Caleb Krech 3, Mason Ollman 37, Cash Williams 7, Riley Tiboni 9, Izzac Hoffman 2, Manor Ollman 2; Three pointers: Krech 1, Mas. Ollman 6, Williams 1, Tiboni 1; Free throws: 6-11; Total fouls: 21; Fouled out: none.

Bigfork: Ben Heinle 7, Jackson Lovdahl 12, Jared Lovdahl 20, James Rauzi 3, Liam Prato 14, Jhace Pearson 9; Three pointers: Heinle 1, Jac. Lovdahl 2, Jar. Lovdahl 2, Pearson 3; Free throws: 11-20; Total fouls:13; Fouled out: none.



Virginia/MI-B 5,

Proctor 1

At Proctor, the Blue Devils scored five times on their way to a dominant 5-1 win over Proctor Friday night.

Keegan Ruedebusch got the scoring started with a goal just 1:28 into the contest on the assist from Ben Ervin and Elijah Carlson. Brady Seppala then made it a 2-0 game later in the first on the goal assisted by Ryan Scherf and Tom Nemanich. That goal came at 12:31 in the period.

Scherf found the back of the net just seconds into the second period on an unassisted goal that came at 0:12. Dillon Drake then put one past Rails goalie Cody Urie to make it 4-0. Drake’s goal came at the 7:14 mark and was assisted by Scherf and Brennan Peterson.

Virginia led 4-1 heading into the third where Carlson grabbed the last goal of the contest in the closing seconds. On the pass from Ervin, Carlson’s goal at 16:50 made it a 5-1 game, giving the Blue Devils the win.

Ian Kangas got the win in the net for Virginia, stopping 27 shots. Urie stopped 30 for the Rails.

Virginia/MI-B will take on Hibbing at home on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

VMIB 2 2 1 — 5

PHS 0 1 0 — 1

First Period

1, V, Keegan Ruedebusch (Ben Ervin, Elijah Carlson), 1:28; 2, V, Brady Seppala (Ryan Scherf, Tom Nemanich), 12:31.

Second Period

3, V, Scherf (unassisted), 0:12; 4, V, Dillon Drake (Scherf, Brennan Peterson), 7:14; 5, P, Connor Pavlowich (unassisted), 16;49.

Third Period

6, V, Carlson (Ervin), 16:50.

Penalties-Minutes: VMIB 1-2; P 4-8.

Goalie saves: Ian Kangas, V, 7-8-12—27; Cody Urie, P, 12-10-8—30.



At Nashwauk, the Virginia Area Wrestling team picked up one win and dropped two matches Thursday at the GNK quadrangular meet.

The Blue Devils picked up a win in their last match against the Titans, 57-9, but fell earlier in the day to Mille Lacs, 48-28, and Deer River, 36-30.

“I felt we wrestled well the entire night” said Devils head coach Dennis Benz. “The kids seem to be ready for the subsection team meet next Tuesday.”

In the opening match, the Devils took an early 28-3 lead over Mille Lacs but that lead evaporated quickly as Virginia was forced to forfeit at a few weight classes and then dropped matches following their wins.

The Devils fought close with Deer River, according to Benz, but again struggled with losses at the higher weight classes in addition to more forfeits.

Their last match with GNK was a success. The Titans only wrestled the Devils at five weight classes with Virginia coming out on top in four of those matches.

“We just need to keep practicing hard and continue to get ready for the section meets. We have a tough section with three top 15 teams in the state with Foley being the No. 4 team. Nothing is going to be given to any of our wrestlers and they know it.”

The Devils will wrestle Tuesday in the subsection meet. They earned a No. 3 seed and will face Hibbing in their first match.


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