The Crookston Pirates Girls Basketball team had 26 steals in the game and cruised to a 54-27 victory over the Thief River Falls Prowlers in a Section 8AA matchup played at the Crookston High School gymnasium. 

Crookston picked up their defensive intensity and forced Thief River Falls into six turnovers in their first six possessions of the game. The Pirates scored the first five points of the game with an Abby Borowicz free throw, followed by a steal and a layup from Hayden Winjum, and a steal and a layup from Halle Winjum and Crookston led 5-0.  Thief River Falls didn’t turn the ball over for the first time during an offensive possession and they scored their first points of the game when Breanna Myers made a three-pointer from the top of the key to bring the Prowlers within a 5-3 deficit with 14:43 left in the half. 
Crookston responded with a 12-0 run that was sparked by an Emma Borowicz three-point play.  Ally Perreault kept the run going with a basket in the paint, Emma Boll made two free throws, and Halle Winjum had a steal that led to a layup which she followed by a three-point play to give the Pirates a 17-3 lead seven minutes into the game. “We came out with a lot of intensity tonight,” said Pirate Coach Darin Zimmerman. “We played outstanding defense and really played well on that end of the floor.”
Thief River Falls settled in and started taking better care of the ball and went on a 7-4 run over a seven-minute span to get within a 21-10 deficit with 4:35 left in the half.  Crookston settled back in on the offensive side, mostly because of their suffocating defense, and finished the half on a 14-5 run to take a 34-15 lead at halftime.  Crookston had 19 steals in the first half and even though the Pirates had a comfortable lead at the half, they missed a lot of shots in the paint. “Some of it came down to execution and finishing in traffic,” said Coach Zimmerman. “We were floating the ball up there and we were kind of going through the motions a little bit.  We were happy with the lead and how we played on defense, but we struggled finishing on the offensive end.”

Crookston started the second half on an 18-2 run. The run started with an Emma Borowicz three-pointer, Hayden Winjum (on a steal and layup), a Halle Winjum basket, and an Emma Boll basket in the paint for a 43-15 lead over three minutes into the half.  After a Prowler basket, Crookston responded with a three-point play from Hayden Winjum, a basket from Halle Winjum, Emma Boll scored on a nice move in the paint and Hayden Winjum had her ninth steal of the game and scored on a layup for a 52-17 lead halfway through the half.  “We played better offensively in that stretch,” said Coach Zimmerman. “Our defense got us going and led to some baskets, but we were finishing a little bit better.”  The 35-point lead with nine minutes left in the game started the running clock.  Crookston cleared the bench and got everybody in for the final eight minutes of the game.  Thief River Falls scored for the second time in the half with a Kendal Rantanen three-pointer with 6:38 remaining.  The Prowlers added two more points with Jeanne Olson making two free throws to get within a 52-22 deficit.  Crookston held on for the 54-27 victory.  “It was a good win for us tonight,” said Coach Zimmerman. “We had everybody contributing in the win and everybody played well tonight.”

Crookston improves to 13-3 on the year and will wrap up the regular season on Friday when they host the East Grand Forks Green Wave.  Thief River Falls drops to 2-14 on the year. 

  1st  2nd  Final
Thief River Falls 15 12 27
CROOKSTON 34 20 54


For Crookston Points Rebounds Assists/Steals
Hayden Winjum 13 9 9 steals/5 assists
Halle Winjum 13 3 5 steals/5 assists
Emma Borowicz 11 4 assists/4 steals
Emma Boll 8 5
Ally Perreault 4 4
Amelia Overgaard 4 2 steals
Abby Borowicz 1 4 3 steals


For Thief River Falls Points
Sydney Reierson 7
Breanna Myers 5
Kendal Rantanen 3
Josie Johnson 3
Trista Spears 3
Maren Espe 2
Jeanne Olson 2
Olivia Hawkins 2