The Owatonna girls' basketball team closed the first half of Friday's game at Faribault on a 15-2 run to grab a 34-30 halftime lead. The Huskies led throughout the second half on their way to a 56-55 win, but the injury-depleted Falcons kept it close the whole way.

The Falcons started the game strong, hitting several three pointers and forcing numerous OHS turnovers to build a nine-point lead on two occasions. Owatonna sophomore Sara Anderson drilled three consecutive treys in the Huskies' comeback. Senior Jenna Zeman drained a pair of three pointers as Owatonna went 7-for-15 from beyond the arc in the first half.

Faribault focused their defense on Owatonna's all-time leading scorer Sydney Schultz and held her to one first-half field goal and six free throws. She ended the night with 13 points to lead Owatonna. Zeman scored ten. Anderson had nine. Bria Wachowiak had eight points, including several crucial free throws down the stretch.

Owatonna extended their four-point halftime lead to six several times in the second half. But Faribault closed the gap to one point several times. With Owatonna up 2 and time running out, Faribault's Abby Van Ryn made a daring dash up the lane and was fouled with :00.7 showing on the clock. She made the first free throw but missed the second. Owatonna cradled the rebound for the victory.

Faribault's five starters were the only players to score, led by Van Ryan and Grace Amacher with 14 apiece. Lauren Isaacson scored 13 and Megan Gehrke added ten. Faribault (5-8, 4-6 Big Nine) is missing senior guard Bre Bresnahan, who should be back soon from an ankle injury. The Falcons play at Rochester Century Tuesday, January 16.

Owatonna (9-5, 8-2) will host Austin Tuesday on Teacher Appreciation Night. Coach Lindsey Hugstad-Va says each player can invite a special guest from the school district who has made a difference in their lives.

The Huskies won the ninth-grade game Friday night 43-19. The Falcons took the junior varsity contest 32-23.

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