On Tuesdays and Thursdays, KBUN Sportsradio presents a “Lumberjack Throwback”, as we recall a memorable Bemidji High School game from recent years through archived highlights and interviews. Bemidji girls basketball will go for the Section championship tonight, so today we remember a thrilling game with Hermantown from last season…
As the 2018-19 season worked toward its conclusion, the Lumberjacks were in the midst of a good overall stretch of play. A three-game losing skid had been followed by three wins in four games entering a home tilt with Hermantown, with only two further games beyond to conclude the regular season. The Jacks had also been playing great on home floor, a place where they would go 10-2 overall once the season ended.
Hermantown was a year away from having one of the top teams in Section 7AAA–a team that is also playing in a section title game tonight against Hibbing–but the pieces were starting to come together and show the potential that they had. Both teams showed their potential with a great game and thrilling conclusion.
Lindsey Hildenbrand, in a sign of things to come, had the hot hand early and often for the Lumberjacks. She buried a pair of triples, and with other deep makes from Macy Flatness and Katie Alto added on, Bemidji built a large 24-6 lead in the opening eight minutes of the game.
Hildenbrand kept things rolling, dropping in yet another triple for her fourth of the half. Despite some offensive pushback from the Hawks, Bemidji still held a sizable 47-34 lead at the break.
The good shooting from beyond the arc kept coming early on in the second half for the Lumberjacks. Hildenbrand sank another three and Mackenzie Nicklason also knocked down a triple in transition as the lead hovered around double-digits early on.
But the Hawks had a big reply. A 9-0 run cut the lead down to 55-54 and the game became a back-and-forth affair the rest of the way with Bemidji leading by slim margins for most of it. Rumer Flatness came up with several tough late buckets, finishing through contact inside on several occasions to maintain a narrow advantage.
Hermantown had answers down the stretch, tying the game at 70 as the teams moved into the game’s final minute. Once again, Hildenbrand came up with a big shot, working down the lane for a runner.
Having her own huge game, the Hawks’ Elly Schmitz scored the last of her 26 points to knot the score again at 72. After a poke out of bounds on the other end of the floor, Bemidji had two seconds to set up a shot for the win. Hildenbrand was the recipient, letting fly from well beyond the arc for her sixth three-pointer of the night–and the dagger.
After scoring the last seven points of the game, Hildenbrand ended with 26 points, while Macy Flatness posted 13 and Rumer Flatness added 10 in one of the most exciting victories of the season for the Jacks.
Bemidji finished the season 1-1 with a win against Cloquet and a loss at Moorhead. The Lumberjacks went on to defeat Sauk Rapids-Rice in the opening round of the 8AAA playoffs and bowed out in the following round against Fergus Falls.
COMING TUESDAY: The most Cardiac moment of all.