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Bombers duo dominates Rebels

Rayna Klejeski and Allison Marine combined for 50 points in leading the Barnum girls basketball team to a 65-36 victory over next-door neighbors and rival Moose Lake/Willow River Monday night in Moose Lake.

"Allison and Rayna are two of the best post players and it is fun to see how they have started to work together," said Barnum coach Mariah Minkkinen. "They are tough to guard and tonight they played very well for us."

Klejeski led all scorers with 27 points and Marine tacked on 23 points for the Bombers.

"Rayna can score on anyone and then when we stopped her, they dumped off to Marine and that's just tough to stop," said Rebels coach Zak Mathson. "They just know how to play off each other."

Despite the loss, Mathson continues to work on building experience and maturity with a team that's still learning.

"We have a lot of inexperienced girls who we are teaching to play hard, and they are getting better," Mathson said. "We are focusing on the speed of the game and trying to work on not turning the ball all over as much as we have so far this season. A lot of that is just playing and being calmer with the ball. I thought tonight (Monday) was our best game of the season."

The Bombers raced out to a 39-20 halftime lead and then outscored the Rebels 24-16 in the second half to notch the victory.

Kendra Jurek added nine points for Barnum, Janaya Jurek added five and Ella Heaton scored a point.

"The Jureks are kind of our unsung hero-type players," Minkkinen said. "They are both solid guards and they are awesome shooters for us. As a team I am impressed with our patience, and we seem to be maturing as a team. I like where we are and how we are progressing."

Moose Lake/Willow River had nine players get onto the scoreboard. The Rebels were led by the 10 points of Hannah Roach. Madison Wasche chipped in with seven points, and Lexi Klininski scored five. Adelyn Szczyrbak, Shannon Granquist and Ellie Nielson each had three points. Alivia Menton and Jenna Beck scored two points each and Maddie Volk finished with a point.

"We are getting better, and the goal is to improve every day and play every play hard," Mathson said of his Rebels. "We will live with the outcome as long as we keep improving. Game by game and practice by practice we will, and are, getting better."

The win improved the Bombers to 5-1 on the season while the loss drops the Rebels to 0-5 on the season.