Pirates defeat Royals 67-50 in Holiday Classic Championship

Natalie Dillon
Crookston Times

the Crookston Pirates girls’ basketball team won the Fergus Falls Holiday Classic with a 67-50 win over Watertown-Mayer Wednesday, December 29.  

The first half was an even match, but the Pirates broke away in the second for the victory. 

Coming into the game, the Royals were ranked 28 in Quality Results Formula (QRF) standings with a 54.7 average, while Crookston was ranked 53 with a 41.4 average. The QRF is a formula used by Minnesota-Scores.net that considers the outcome of the game, the opponent’s wins and the opponent’s class. It does not factor in scoring margin. 

The Royals got out to an early 5-2 lead, but back-to-back buckets from Emma Osborn gave the Pirates the 6-5 lead. They extended it to 8-5 with a pair of free throws from Halle Winjum.  

Watertown-Mayer worked their way back with free throws and three-pointers to retake the lead 13-11. Hayden Winjum tied it at 13, but the Royals took over on the next possession. 

The Pirates took a timeout to regroup, and it paid off, as Emma Gunderson tied the game in response. The two teams tied it up again at 20, but Libby Salentine broke it with a bucket. From that point on, the Pirates didn’t relinquish the lead. 

Crookston took the 27-34 lead into the half. 

The Pirates opened the second half with an 8-2 run to extend their lead to 35-26. The Royals worked their way back to get within four, however, causing another Crookston timeout.  

Halle Winjum flipped a switch out of the timeout, sparking a 10-0 run. Carly Killian fouled her behind the arc, and Halle made all three of her free throws. Osborn sunk a three and Ally Perreault followed with a two-pointer. Halle finished the run by making both of her bonus free throws.  

Osborn maintained the double-digit lead with two three-pointers, while Halle Winjum went on to make four more free throws. She was 12-13 from the charity stripe the entire game.  

In the final seconds of the game, Ellie Nesseth came off the bench and went 1-2 from the line to secure the 67-50 victory. 

Halle Winjum and Osborn were the leading scorers for the Pirates yet again, as they put up 23 and 18 points, respectively. Borowicz added 7, while both Gunderson and Perreault had 6. Hayden Winjum, Salentine and Nesseth put up the remaining points. Hayden Winjum and Perreault led the team in rebounds with 11 and 7, respectively, while Halle Winjum had a team-high 6 assists.  

The Pirates improve to 6-2 on the season. They take almost a full week off before playing again at Roseau on Tuesday, January 4 at 7 p.m. 

Ally Perreault matched her season best 7 rebounds against Watertown-Mayer.
Emma Osborn (14) had her seventh consecutive double-digit scoring game.
Halle Winjum was 12-13 from the free-throw line for a total of 23 points.
Emma Gunderson had 6 points off the bench.
Hayden Winjum had a season best 11 rebounds in the Holiday Classic championship game.