The Wadena-Deer Creek Wolverines fell behind early and tried to come back, but fell short 64-61 in a girls basketball non conference game in Park Rapids on Feb. 18.

The Wolverines trailed by as many as 14 points as another slow start ultimately doomed the Wolverines.

Kennedy Gravelle led the Wolverines with 27 points, while Madison Carsten finished with 17 points.

The Wolverines will now turn their focus on the Section 8AA playoffs. The Wolverines earned the No. 8 seed in the South Subsection of 8AA, showcasing the strength of the subsection. Eight of the nine teams finished with winning records. The Wolverines will need to pick up their second Section 8AA win if they hope to continue their season. The Wolverines were just 1-8 against section opponents. One of those eight losses was against their opponent in the Section 8AA play-in round, Staples-Motley. The Cardinals defeated the Wolverines 64-47 in the season-opener, but both teams have gone in different directions since that game. The Cardinals finished the 2019-20 season with a record of 7-19, while Wadena-DC is 14-12.

In their season finale, the Wolverines struggled to slow down Rilee Michaelson, Tori Weaver and Paige Johnson. The trio combined for the majority of the points for Park Rapids Area. Michaelson finished with 19 points, Weaver added 15 and Johnson finished with 14.

The Wolverines trailed 36-27 at the end of the first half. They outscored the Panthers 34-28 in the second half, but couldn’t complete the comeback bid.

The Wolverines return to action at 7 p.m. on Feb. 21 at the Wadena High School gymnasium against the Staples-Motley Cardinals in the Section 8AA play-in game. The winner will take on Fergus Falls on Feb. 27 in Fergus Falls. The Otters earned the No. 1 seed in the South.

WDC 27 34--61

PRA 36 28--64

WDC- Madison Carsten 17, Madison Packer 2, Hailey Wiederich 3, Kennedy Gravelle 27, MacKenzie Carsten 6, Lauryn Gravelle 6

3-pointers: Mad. Carsten 2, Wiederich, K. Gravelle 3, Mack. Carsten 2. Free Throws: 9-11. Team Fouls: 15. Fouled Out: Mack. Carsten

PRA-Holly Johnson 2, Abby Morris 9, Katie Burlingame 4, Tori Weaver 15, Paige Johnson 14, Rilee Michaelson 19

3-pointers: Morris, Weaver 3. Free Throws:12-18. Team Fouls: 14. Fouled Out: None