Prep report: Hawks' Soumis bombs Bemidji with 55 points

Jan. 16—BEMIDJI — Abe Soumis stole the show on Tuesday night at the BHS Gymnasium.

The Bemidji High School boys basketball team had rallied from a 15-point first-half deficit to lead Hermantown 69-59, placing the Lumberjacks on the precipice of perhaps their best win this season. But Soumis wouldn't let it happen.

The Hawks' senior sensation scored 20 of Hermantown's final 29 points, powering a surge that dragged the Hawks to an 88-81 victory. He finished the night with 55 in all, resetting Hermantown's single-game school record for the third time in his high school career.

"It's a little disheartening to lose tonight when we played as well as we did," BHS head coach Steve Thompson said to the Bemidji Pioneer. "But when a player goes off for 55, it's tough. I don't know how many shots he even missed in the second half. I know he didn't miss a free throw. He had a night."

Soumis poured in 28 points in the first half, carrying Hermantown (11-5) to a 47-39 halftime advantage. But his star turn really took center stage in the second half, when he delivered bucket after bucket in crunch time as the Hawks retook the lead and held off the Lumberjacks late.

Bemidji's Jaxon Boschee matched Soumis for much of the game and finished two points shy of his career high with 31.

Visiting Esko edged out the Hunters despite 37 points from Denfeld's Marnaries Ferguson on Tuesday night, Jan. 16 in Duluth.

Finnley Powell added 16 points and Ethan Starstead 15 for Denfeld.

The Raptors collected probably the best win of their new merged era on Tuesday night, Jan. 16, as four players scored in double figures for a Polar League road victory at Cromwell-Wright.

The Raptors (8-3) took a 38-32 lead into the half and did even better offensively in the second period. Luukas Korpela finished with 19 points and Jackson Korpela 17 in the win, while Sam Ojibway chipped in 15.

The Cardinals' (8-6) scoring came from fewer sources, as Brady Dahl led all players with 23 points and Dylan Nyberg 22.

The Tigers allowed just 10 first-half points to put their Heart O'North Conference road game away early on Tuesday, Jan. 16.

Tyler Nelson drilled six treys in the win, while Boden Teal posted a double-double of 12 points and 12 boards as the Tigers (9-5) extended their three-way tie in the league standings at 7-1 ahead of a meeting with one of the other joint leaders, Cumberland, in Maple on Friday night.

The Rebels put up 47 points in the first half, which was more than enough cushion to get past the Mercuries on Tuesday, Jan. 16 in Willow River.

Nolan Nelson led the way with 24 points, but the 10-3 Rebels also got 18 from Adam Neumann and Luke Dewey.

The Polar Bears couldn't keep up with their visitors on the defensive end on Tuesday, but Jonah Spindler set a school record by sinking 10 3-pointers as part of his 39-point effort for Floodwood (0-10).

Tommy Larson led Littlefork-Big Falls with 33.

Anna Westby drilled six 3-pointers as the Wolverines, ranked No. 10 in the state in Class AAA in the most recent Minnesota Basketball News poll, rolled to a road victory in Hermantown.

Westby finished with a game-high 34 points, Maija Lamppa scored 18, Emma Lamppa 16 and Lexi Lamppa 10. Rock Ridge (14-1) made 14 triples as a team.

For Hermantown (4-11), Olivia Johnson had a team-best 15.

The Rails took control of this one early, outscoring the Bluejackets 42-12 in the first half.

Chloe Carlson led the way on the offensive end, scoring 20 points as the Rails (13-3) made it eight wins in a row. Peyton Walker added 11 points and Lily Smith 10.

Tara Hertling scored 12 for Hibbing (2-12).

Four Tigers scored in double figures led by 15 points from Faith Zganjar as Cherry (5-8) extended a home winning streak to three games.

The Rebels prevailed on the road in Mora on Tuesday, Jan. 16, grinding out the win in a defensive second half.

MLWR, which protected a 28-22 halftime lead, was led by 13 points from Tyler Orvedahl. Madison Wasche and Piper Nielsen scored 10 apiece.

Jameson Duell was the overtime hero for the Thunderhawks on Tuesday night, Jan. 16, at Northwoods Credit Union Arena.

However, his moment came as a result of a power-play goal by Rapids' Bauer Murphy with 41 seconds left in regulation, a goal that spoiled the storybook ending of the night for Karson Young, who gave CEC a brief lead with his power play goal scored with 3:16 remaining.

Murphy also scored on the power play in the first period to cancel out an early goal for CEC's Ethan Kilichowski.

Carter Casey made 26 saves for Rapids, while Jacob Iallonardo stopped 25 shots for the Lumberjacks.

The Cardinals dealt an early-round blow to the visiting Spartans, scoring three times in the first period to take control of their game on Tuesday night, Jan. 16 in Chippewa Falls.

Superior already trailed 1-0 when Andrew Johnson and Mason Johnson scored 44 seconds apart for ChiHi, and the hosts added a fourth goal before Brady Haroldson's power-play goal put Superior on the board in the last minute of the second period.

Lucas Williams added a consolation goal in the third period for Superior (7-7-1), which was outshot 37-21 and got 32 saves from Trent Peterson.

River Freeman recorded a hat trick as the Hawks cruised to victory over the Bluejackets at Hermantown Arena on Tuesday night, while Josh Kauppinen added a goal and three assists.

Jaxsyn Schmidt's power play goal 6:21 into the third period proved decisive as the Rebels claimed a home win over the Rails on Tuesday, Jan. 16 at Riverside Arena.

There were opportunities all over the ice, as the teams combined for 85 shots on goal over 51 minutes, with Eli Gilbertson making 34 stops on the winning side.

Joe Olson had a goal and two assists for Moose Lake Area (5-9-0).

Grady Dimberio and Kasey Lamppa both had five-point games as the Wolverines routed the Storm on Tuesday night at Eveleth Hippodrome.

Both had a full house, of sorts: Dimberio with a hat trick and two assists and Lamppa with two goals and three assists.

Goalie Wyatt Jonassen made 21 saves for the Wolverines (13-2-1).

The Spartans got a sour taste of the upper end of Minnesota AA girls hockey, as Mercury Bischoff scored four times in the first two periods for the Lightning on Tuesday, Jan. 16 at Yanmar Arena in Grand Rapids.

Grand Rapids/Greenway's first two goals came 24 seconds apart in the third minute of the game. Adalyn Benson and Autumn Cooper scored for Superior, but Bischoff finished her hat trick 12:03 into the second period and added her fourth goal, shorthanded, less than two minutes later to make it 6-2.

Opal Anderson bagged a pair of goals for GRG (13-7), which got 27 saves from Riley Toivonen.

Kaulie Nault made 22 saves for Superior (17-2), while Michaela Geissler recorded a goal and two assists.

The Lumberjacks busted the game open quickly in the third period, scoring four times in barely eight minutes at Hibbing Memorial Arena.

Erin Loeb started the onslaught at 1:48 of the period, followed by Paiton Plante, Brayley Merrier and Allie Jones. Gwen Lilly had a pair of assists.

Aune Boben and Heidi Rasch scored for the Bluejackets (5-16-1), who got 45 saves from goalie Grace McDowell.

Avery Moore made 16 saves for CEC (8-11-0).

Superior held off a challenge from Rock Ridge to finish first with a 431-374 margin in a four-team boys swim meet on Tuesday, Jan. 16 in Superior.

Proctor/Esko had 219 and Chisholm 215.

Joe Duzell had a great day for the Spartans, winning the 200-yard freestyle in 1 minute, 57.96 seconds, and the 100 free in 52.83.Gunnar George won the 50 free (22.05) and 100 butterfly (53.85) for Rock Ridge and participated on two winning relays, while Gabe Aagenes performed a unique double, taking first in the 100 breaststroke (1:05.59) and 1-meter diving (243.9 points).

The Bemidji Pioneer's Christian Babcock contributed to this story.