Rorman powers Blue Earth Area past Fairmont cagers

MANEUVERING — Fairmont post player Taylor Crissinger (21) looks to maneuver around Blue Earth Area defender Caitlin Rorman (11) during Big South Conference basketball action Friday night at Cardinal Gym in Fairmont. (Photo by Greg Abel)

FAIRMONT — Fairmont and Blue Earth Area’s first Big South Conference girls basketball clash of the new season contained the makings of a Minnesota Rise AAU reunion on Friday night.

Bucs’ senior hybrid forward Caitlin Rorman and Cardinals’ senior post player Taylor Crissinger each produced double-double performances, while their summertime hoops mentor and current Gustavus Adolphus College associate head women’s basketball coach Dan Wolfe watched closely from the Cardinal Gym bleachers.

Rorman delivered a game-high 27 points to complement 10 rebounds, a game-best six steals and three assists to help power Blue Earth Area to a 52-41 league triumph over Fairmont in the Bucs’ season-opener.

“A typical first game of the season,” said Bucs’ assistant coach Travis Armstrong, who was serving as the interim head coach with mentor Al Cue in Florida until Thursday. Cue is in training to become a standardized test giver for area high schools. “It took the first three minutes for us to get used to the fast pace right off the opening tip.

“I thought the girls responded well after starting the game down 7-0.”

Fairmont freshman Rayah Quiring converted Lexi Lunn’s assist into the game’s initial points out of the opening jump sequence. Quiring then made a perfect low-post lob pass to Crissinger for two of her team-best 15 points before Crissinger pulled down one of her game-best 11 rebounds and hit a solo free throw.

Bryn Miller then crashed the offensive glass for two of her nine points to extend the Cardinals’ early lead to 7-0 before the home team went cold from the field en route to a 14-minute scoreless drought.

“We experienced the same kind of stretch against Tri-City United in our season opener,” said Fairmont head coach Sara Junkermeier. “We did, however, get off to one of our best starts ever, but just didn’t maintain it.”

After Callie Stevermer hit the back end of a two-shot foul to end the Bucs’ opening scoreless span, Rorman erupted for 13 of Blue Earth Area’s ensuing 24 consecutive points to build a 25-7 lead.

Miller finally broke Fairmont’s scoring silence with a pair of free throws with 1:10 remaining before Rorman nailed a left-corner 3-pointer at the 24-second juncture to stake Blue Earth Area to a 28-11 halftime edge.

Crissinger hit a putback basket and converted Madysen Allen’s low-post assist into a lay-in off a press-break before Quiring drained the Cardinals’ only 3-pointer of the game to whittle the Bucs’ lead to 30-20 with 14 minutes left in the second half.

Rorman, however, answered with the third of her four trifectas and Hannah Johnson supplied two free throws to re-establish a 12-point lead.

Miller’s solo free throw, Maggy Totzke’s runner and Lunn’s charity tosses inched the Cardinals within 39-31 with 5:30 left in regulation, but this time it was Hannah Johnson nailing a 3 to counter for the Bucs.

Rorman and Johnson then combined for Blue Earth Area’s next seven points to put the game out of reach.

Hannah Johnson finished with 12 points and seven rebounds for the Bucs.

Fairmont (0-2, 0-1 Big South) travels to Windom Area on Tuesday night, while Blue Earth Area (1-0, 1-0) plays host to nonconference opponent Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial on Monday night.

B.E. Area 28-24–52

Fairmont 11-30–41

B.E. AREA (52)

Rorman 10-22 3-7 27, Ripley 1-5 2-2 4, H. Johnson 3-9 4-4 12, Stevermer 2-5 1-3 5, Armstrong 0-1 2-4 2, A. Howard 1-3 0-0 2, K. Johnson 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 17-45 12-20 52.

FAIRMONT (41)

Crissinger 7-11 1-2 15, Miller 3-5 3-6 9, Quiring 2-9 0-0 5, Allen 1-4 0-0 2, Lunn 0-9 4-4 4, Totzke 1-4 0-0 2, Becker 2-3 0-0 4, Murphy 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 16-47 8-12 41.

3-pointers: B.E. Area 6-13 (Rorman 4-9, H. Johnson 2-4); Fairmont 1-10 (Quiring 1-5, Lunn 0-4, Allen 0-1). Fouled out: None. Rebounds: B.E. Area 30 (Rorman 10, H. Johnson 7); Fairmont 26 (Crissinger 11, Becker 6). Assists: B.E. Area 11 (Rorman and A. Howard 3 each); Fairmont 7 (Allen and Lunn 3 each). Steals: B.E. Area 11 (Rorman 6); Fairmont 8 (Crissinger and Quiring 3 each).

Natalie Tonne delivered 14 points to power Fairmont to a 51-16 triumph over Blue Earth Area during B-squad action Friday night.

Cadence Becker produced seven points for the Cardinals (2-0), Brittney Mosloski and Kaitlyn Scott each netted six points, while Emma Gudahl and Maggy Totzke chipped in five points apiece.

Claire Nemmers scored 12 points and pocketed five steals to help pace Fairmont’s 41-16 victory over Blue Earth Area during C-squad action Friday night.

Carissa Saxton tallied eight points and garnered five rebounds for the Cardinals (2-0), while Lauren Davis also netted eight points.

Sami Lenort contributed six points, three assists and three steals to the winning effort, while Emily Frank chipped in four points and six rebounds.

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