Ram Katie Borowicz keys two Ram runs that make the difference.

College football’s bowl season is officially upon us, with the first of who knows how many strange bowls named for weirdly obscure sponsors kicking off on Dec. 20. So in that spirit, maybe it’s best to label the latest high school girls’ basketball game pitting the Crookston Pirates versus the Roseau Rams as the “Borowicz Bowl,” since in recent years it’s been a chance for Borowicz siblings on the Pirate squad to take on their relatives sharing the same last name on the Rams.

Thursday night’s game in Roseau was no run-of-the-mill Borowicz Bowl, however, as both teams came into the contest with a combined record of 13-0, with many of their victories coming in blowout fashion.

Something had to give, right? And on this particular occasion, it was Crookston who gave, losing 74-65 to the same team that defeated them in the Section 8AA championship game last March, leaving the Pirates one win short of the state tournament. The Pirates hung tough in both halves with the Rams in the Roseau gym Thursday, but a couple of timely runs by the Rams, one in each half, widened their leads and kept the Pirates at bay. Then the Rams made their free throws down the stretch to seal the win.

The Pirates were led by Emma Borowicz and her 14 points. She was followed in the box score by Gretchen Theis with 13 points, Halle Winjum with a dozen points and seven rebounds, and Dani Boyle with nine points. Rounding out the Pirates scoring were Hayden Winjum with six points, Kasey Cwikla and Abby Borowicz with four points each, and Emma Boll with three.

When Roseau needed to make a run, they turned to junior guard Katie Borowicz, who poured in 29 pounds and dished 11 assists.

The Pirates are now 7-1 on the season, and the win pushes Roseau to 7-0. Crookston is off for a week; they’ll travel to the Fergus Falls tournament on Dec. 27 to take on the Hawley Nuggets. In other Thursday action, the Pirate JV team defeated Roseau in a nailbiter, 53-52, and the Pirate “C” team won by the narrowest of margins as well, 43-42.

Pirate Head Coach Darin Zimmerman said he thought the Pirates competed well and gave themselves plenty of opportunities, but they were done in by too many mistakes and gave the Rams too many clean scoring looks. “Katie Borowicz is a great player so she will take advantage of that,” he said.

If there’s anything positive to take from the loss, Zimmerman said the Pirates showed poise against a tough opponent in their gym. The Pirates just need to show that poise for a full 36 minutes, he added. It might have been a different story had the Pirates been able to bury some of their good looks in the paint. “Even making one-third of those shots would have had a major impact on the game, so we will work on finishing,” Zimmerman said.

With Christmas next week, he said he’s going to lighten the practice load so the girls can rest up a bit and enjoy time with family. Zimmerman said he and the team are looking forward to the Fergus Falls tourney. After the Nuggets, Crookston will take on either Coon Rapids or the host squad, he said.

When they do practice in the coming days, Zimmerman said the focus will be on finishing possessions and staying aggressive on defense.