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DL boys' hoops take 2 in a row

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Snapping a three-game losing streak, the Detroit Lakes boys' basketball team strung together two wins in a row to climb back to .500 with a record of 12-12.

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The home season finale ushered the Laker seniors out in style, as DL dominated visiting Mid-State foe Wadena-Deer Creek 84-53.

It was the senior show of guards Kirk McLeod and Derek Long, as the duo combined to score 31 points.

Long rang up 17 and McLeod 14 points. Other seniors who played their last game in Ralph Anderson Gym included Nick Groth (two points), Karter Smith (seven) and Austin Eiter (one).

The Lakers also picked up a big road victory in Grand Rapids Saturday, as DL came back from a 30-26 halftime deficit to down the Thunderhawks 55-50.

Unfortunately for the previously state-ranked Thunderhawks, they lost their all-star forward due to a broken hand that he suffered a couple of weeks ago in practice.

"I thought we played a little lackadaisical in the first half, but were able to turn it around in the second," said DL head coach Robb Flint. "Christian Hedstrom had two steals to start the second half and from then on, we were more aggressive and played unselfishly on defense."

That resulted in the Lakers holding Grand Rapids to 20 points in the second half, while scoring 29 themselves.

Long led the way with 19 points and seven rebounds, which included three treys, while McLeod dumped in 16 points. Sophomore guard Ryan Cihak contributed 11 points, which included a crucial put-back late in the game.

"We played well enough to win, but I thought we definitely could have played better," Flint said.

With only two games remaining in the regular season, Flint said the Lakers will more than likely have the No. 4 seed for the upcoming Section 8-3A playoffs and play at No. 1 Fergus Falls (15-9) in the opener.

The Lakers will first try and finish above .500 for the season when they play at Staples-Motley (9-15) Thursday and at Bemidji (2-21) Friday.

The DL basketball program will also host its major fundraiser Saturday, a youth tournament held at the DLHS, which attracts 48 teams.

Laker results

Wadena-Deer Creek at Detroit Lakes, Tuesday, Feb. 26.

Wolverines 53

Lakers 84

Scoring (2-3-ftm-fta-pts) - DL: Kirk McLeod 4-2-0-0-14; Corbin Duncan 0-1-0-0-3; Christian Hedstrom 3-1-3-4-12; Jackson Lyngaas 0-2-2-2-8; Nolan Singer 1-0-0-0-2; Derek Long 3-2-5-5-17; Ryan Cihak 2-1-0-0-7; Sam Champa 2-0-1-1-5; Nick Groth 0-0-2-2-2; Karter Smith 3-0-1-2-7; Austin Eiter 0-0-1-2-1; Trey Lyngaas 3-0-0-0-6. TOTAL: 21-9-15-18-84.

Detroit Lakes at Grand Rapids, Saturday, Feb. 23.

Lakers 26 29 - 55

Thunderhawks 30 20 - 50

Scoring - DL: McLeod 2-3-3-4-16; Jackson Lyngaas 0-1-0-0-3; Long 4-3-2-3-19; Cihak 3-0-5-6-11; Champa 1-0-2-2-4; Groth 0-0-0-2-0; Eiter 0-0-2-2-2. TOTAL: 10-7-14-19-55.

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Brian Wierima
Detroit Lakes Newspapers Sports Editor for the last 15 years. St. Cloud State University graduate, who hails from Deer Creek, MN. 
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