by Brenda Erdahl, Sports Editor: Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa handed the Irish girls basketball team its fourth loss of the season, Thursday, Jan. 4 when Maple Lake went on the road to take on the Jags. B-B-E jumped to an early 12-3 advantage and never gave up the lead to cruise to a 63-49 win. After a time-out the Irish were able to regroup and went on an 8-2 run to pull within three, 11-14 in the first half, but that was as close as they would get. Meanwhile, the Jags were red hot from the floor, shooting nearly 50 percent of the game and connecting on five three pointers in the first half alone, and eight for the entire game. The Irish struggled to match B-B-E’s offensive fire power and went into the break down 35-20. Maple Lake came out with some full court pressure to start the second half, and went on an 8-2 run to cut the Jags’ lead to just nine. From there, the Irish kept pace with the Jags, but the 15-point deficit was too much to overcome. The loss bumped their record to 7-4 overall. They are also 2-2 in the Central Minnesota Conference. Linsey Rachel created offense with her defense with seven steals and seven rebounds. She also had 15 points for the Irish. Grace Heying fought her way to 13 points, five rebounds and three blocks. Calli Maki returned to the lineup with a strong performance as well, scoring 12 points and three steals. “We played pretty well, but we needed our best. We struggled to defend the three and they were on fire (8 of 16 on three-point shots for the game),” coach Adam Ronnenberg said. “This is the second game in a row we have been out rebounded and we now see how important it is.” Maple Lake shot 40 percent from the floor compared to B-B-E’s 48 percent. Turnovers were nearly even, but the Irish were outrebounded 34-28. Maple Lake was scheduled to host Paynesville on Tuesday, Jan. 9. On Friday, Jan. 12, the girls will host Holdingford at 7:15 p.m.