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Girls basketball: Agates fall in second-half swoon

Two Harbors senior Tori Bott brings the ball up the court past Moose Lake-Willow River's Ella Rhoades in the Agates' 78-59 loss Monday, Feb. 18, in Two Harbors. (Jamey Malcomb/News-Chronicle)1 / 3
Two Harbors coach Chris Lemke draws up a play in the first half of the Agates' 78-59 loss to Moose Lake-Willow River on Monday, Feb. 18. (Jamey Malcomb/New-Chronicle)2 / 3
Two Harbors sophomore Morgan Beardsley (left) drives to the basket past Moose Lake-Willow River's Elliana Schaumburg. (Jamey Malcomb/New-Chronicle)3 / 3

Two Harbors played one of its best first halves of the season against Moose Lake-Willow River, but a slow start to the second half led to a 78-59 loss for the Agates at home Monday, Feb. 18.

The teams battled back and forth in the first half, with Two Harbors jumping out first to a small lead and the Rebels responding with a small run of their own.

The only difference in the score was a late shot by ML-WR's Ella Rhoades gave the Rebels a 35-33 lead at halftime.

The second half was a different story, though. The Rebels went on a 14-4 run to open a 12-point lead with about 15 minutes to play.

Senior Tori Bott tried to keep the Agates in the game, leading all scorers with 24 points, but ML-WR would continue to stretch the lead over the final few minutes.

The game was the third straight where the Agates have turned out a strong first half, only to see the game slip away in the second half. The Agates held leads against South Ridge and Virginia last week, but sluggish second halves cost Two Harbors in those games as well. The Agates held an eight point lead over Virginia Feb. 15 at halftime and led South Ridge by three at the break Feb. 14. In each game, Two Harbors struggled to score later in the game, managing just 13 points against Virginia and 19 against South Ridge.

After another loss Tuesday, Feb. 19 — 78-46 to Mesabi East in Aurora — Two Harbors fell to 10-10 with just two games left in the regular season.

The Agates were scheduled to play McGregor on Thursday, Feb. 21; results weren't available by presstime. They next play Duluth Denfeld at 7:15 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25, in Two Harbors.

Moose Lake-WR 35-43—78

Two Harbors 33-26—59

Moose Lake-Willow River — Elliana Schaumburg 7, Charis Blacklock 10, Natalie Mikrot 14, Dallis Kukuk 2, Monica Mikrot 8, Ella Rhodes 22, Meghan Granquist 5, Maci Kukuk 10. Totals 30 12-20 78.

3-point goals — Schaumburg, N. Mikrot 2, M. Kukuk 3.

Two Harbors — Kate Thomasen 7, Jada Larson 1, Laura Erickson 13, Morgan Beardsley 4, Elise Poe-Johnson 8, Tori Bott 24, Isabell Schottenbauer 2. Totals 23 10-20 59.

3-point goals — Erickson 3.

Jamey Malcomb

Jamey Malcomb has been a reporter for the Pine Journal since October 2018. He previously worked as a reporter for the Lake County News-Chronicle from 2015-2018. Malcomb is a native of North Carolina and holds a bachelor's degree in English and history from the George Washington University and a master's degree in education from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. Malcomb moved to Minnesota in July 2012 and worked as a sports clerk and news assistant at the Duluth News Tribune. 

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