Pelican Rapids’ Oakley Kress led all scorers with 25 points as the Vikings beat Staples-Motley 69-58 in a section 8AA playoff game played at Staples.

Pelican Rapids led 30-28 at the break and they were able to hold off the Cardinals in the second half for the upset over the 4th seed in the section.

“We were very proud of the effort our guys put forth in this game,” head coach John Gullingsrud commented. “We played with confidence and were able to hold the lead from start to finish in a tough environment on the road. Defensively, we really made the Cardinals leading scorer Gavin Smith work for his points, which was a big key for us.”

Kress’ points came on 5 field goals, 3 three pointers and 6 of 8 free throws during the game. Pelican Rapids also got 15 points and 13 rebounds from Jacob Gottenborg and 9 points and 6 assists from Hayden Christenson.

Staples-Motley was led by Gavin Smith, who had 21 points, but shot 8-31 from the field. Overall, the Vikings were 20-46 (43%) shooting and made 7-16 (44%) threes. They were also 20-30 (67%) from the free throw line.

“Staples-Motley cut our lead to two points on a few occasions during the game, but we never gave up the lead and let them have that momentum,” coach Gullingsrud said. “This is a very big win for our program as we have been making strides this year in the right direction, so it was nice to see the hard work by our guys pay off in this one.”