Teddies not kind to the Scots

Prologue
Highland Park Wall Mural
Its another Monday night at St. Paul Highland Park, thankfully the WIFI works since the cell service is dead.  Tonight's opponent for the Scots is #4AA Minneapolis Roosevelt.  Nice short non-conference trip for the Teddies.  The walking taco is outstanding with Sprite as always.  Light crowd for this one.  Arione Farrar comes off the bench and no Rob Mestas running Roosevelt tonight. 

Number of Teams I've Seen: 132 (49 courts)

Beverage Consumption Counter: 1128.9 ounces (68 days, 97 games, 2 scrimmages added on)
  • Pepsi: 560 ounces
  • Coke: 172 ounces
  • Dr. Pepper: 36 ounces
  • Sprite: 128 ounces
  • Sierra Mist: 12 ounces
  • Barq's Root Beer: 20 ounces
  • A&W Root Beer: 24 ounces
  • Red Powerade: 80 ounces
  • Red Gatorade: 80 ounces
  • Water: 500 ml
Hot Dog Counter: 12

Song of the Day
Natalie Merchant - Wonder

Game Time:
Highland Park gets off to a start with Eddie McGrew knocking down a 3 and 2 free throws.  7-2 Scots when Farrar finally enters at the 12:22 mark.  The shooting is ice cold from both sides.  Elijah Hannah knocks down a 3 and Farrar comes off a ball screen and banks his own 3 from straight away.  9 all at 10:30.  Frosh Josh Aune with a 3 point play at 10:24 and the Scots keep a 12-9 lead.  But Roosevelt's 2-3 zone holds them to 1 field goal in almost the next 10 minutes.  Meanwhile Farrar runs for a layup, Hannah drives for 2 free throws, London Cobbs with 2 freebies of his own and makes one of his few shots of the night on a kickout for 3.  Farrar ends the 21-5 run by getting out for another layup.  A late Scots 3 cuts the margin to 30-20 Roosevelt at the half.

Farrar starts the 2nd half and he has it going right away.  A jumper and a floater off a ball screen.  Then he turns a turnover into 2 free throws and then makes a pullup jumper.  Then he'll extend the range with a 3 ball.  43-25 Roosevelt pulling away with 14:08 left.  Farrar with 11 of those.  Hannah for 3 and a Farrar 3 point play.  Junior Martez Rodgers to the rack for 2 and the lead is 24, 53-29.  The rest of the game is no contest.  Roosevelt rolls to a 71-49 victory.

Post Game
Highland Park gets 10 guys in the scorebook but nobody in double figures.  Jitterbug Emanuel Murphy leads the Scots with 8 points.  Enough bad turnovers and not making shots against the zone will do you in.  Then no answer for 8 Roosevelt 3s.  The Scots are now 4-14 overall, 3-3 in the down St. Paul City Conference.  The schedule is busy with trips to St. Paul Washington and SPA on Friday and Saturday.  Then its a non-conference showdown with Minneapolis Southwest at Target Center next Monday night.  An interesting sidenote there is Highland Park coach Jon DePerry's son plays for Southwest.

Roosevelt improves to 15-3 with their 9th straight win.  They are 5-2 and in 2nd place in the Minneapolis City.  Their last loss was an 8 point loss to league leader Minneapolis North (no Hannah for that one) just before the holiday break.  They host South on Thursday.  Then a 3 game league road swing to North, Henry and Edison.  They'll end the season with a big home game against #8AA Breck.  Arione Farrar scores 17 of his 27 in the 2nd half and sat a large chunk of that half.  Elijah Hannah 13 points with 3 3s.  (I'm sticking with my scoresheet instead of the hub on those).  London Cobbs had a bunch of quality looks but only was able to shoot 1-10.  Have to like what's going on in the Minneapolis City right now with North and Washburn arguably the favorites in sections 4A and 6AAA.  Then add in Roosevelt who would be no shocker to come out of section 4AA

January 25, 2015 CzarPI

This is the 3nd CzarPI of the 2014-15 season (see CzarPI Explained here). It includes games through Saturday, January 24th, 2015. The value in () after the CzarPI value is the team's strength of schedule ranking within their class

Class AAAA
  1. Apple Valley - 62.4 (6)
  2. Champlin Park - 61.98 (31)
  3. Eden Prairie - 61.62 (5)
  4. Hopkins - 60.4 (1)
  5. Cretin-Derham Hall - 59.09 (12)
  6. East Ridge - 57.84 (33)
  7. Shakopee - 57.46 (13)
  8. Minnetonka - 57.24 (8)
  9. Roseville - 56.8 (15)
  10. Hastings - 56.37 (59)
  11. Maple Grove - 56.27 (43)
  12. Eastview - 56.24 (17)
  13. St. Michael-Albertville - 55.89 (50)
  14. Robbinsdale Armstrong - 55.58 (58)
  15. Tartan - 55.33 (64)
  16. Wayzata - 55.25 (22)
  17. Rochester John Marshall - 54.73 (44)
  18. Chaska - 54.68 (38)
  19. Moorhead - 54.61 (60)
  20. St. Francis - 54.25 (54)
  21. Edina - 53.88 (40)
  22. Duluth East - 53.6 (57)
  23. Bloomington Jefferson - 53.41 (63)
  24. Mounds View - 53.34 (36)
  25. Mahtomedi - 52.97 (35)
  26. Lakeville North - 52.39 (18)
  27. Northfield - 52.23 (56)
  28. Rochester Mayo - 50.88 (62)
  29. Stillwater Area - 49.98 (20)
  30. Centennial - 49.42 (41)
  31. Owatonna - 49.11 (29)
  32. White Bear Lake - 49 (21)
  33. Rogers - 48.82 (42)
  34. Prior Lake - 48.75 (11)
  35. Forest Lake - 48.75 (16)
  36. Andover - 47.34 (51)
  37. Osseo - 46.79 (45)
  38. Elk River - 46.56 (49)
  39. Bloomington Kennedy - 46.46 (32)
  40. Buffalo - 46.27 (37)
  41. Chanhassen - 46.13 (14)
  42. Brainerd - 45.8 (52)
  43. Burnsville - 45.58 (10)
  44. Lakeville South - 45.51 (2)
  45. Blaine - 45.33 (46)
  46. St. Cloud Tech - 45.08 (48)
  47. Farmington - 45.01 (25)
  48. Rosemount - 44 (3)
  49. Minneapolis South - 43.47 (28)
  50. Cambridge-Isanti - 40.4 (61)
  51. Park Center - 38.86 (53)
  52. Robbinsdale Cooper - 38.27 (19)
  53. Park of Cottage Grove - 38.03 (30)
  54. Woodbury - 37.94 (9)
  55. St. Louis Park - 36.84 (39)
  56. Bemidji - 36.05 (7)
  57. Eagan - 35.73 (4)
  58. Irondale - 34.39 (47)
  59. North St. Paul - 30.98 (24)
  60. Anoka - 29.35 (27)
  61. Rochester Century - 28.12 (34)
  62. Minneapolis Southwest - 27.99 (23)
  63. Coon Rapids - 25.61 (55)
  64. Henry Sibley - 23.17 (26)
Class AAA
  1. Marshall - 60.76 (15)
  2. Detroit Lakes - 58.86 (20)
  3. DeLaSalle - 58.49 (9)
  4. Hermantown - 57.6 (34)
  5. Albany - 56.75 (46)
  6. Red Wing - 56.05 (44)
  7. Orono - 55.18 (30)
  8. St. Thomas Academy - 54.4 (3)
  9. St. Paul Johnson - 54.37 (39)
  10. Rocori - 53.81 (58)
  11. New Prague - 53.64 (24)
  12. Mankato West - 53.32 (26)
  13. Simley - 52.16 (17)
  14. Hill-Murray - 52.05 (22)
  15. Fergus Falls - 51.28 (11)
  16. Minneapolis Washburn - 50.69 (18)
  17. Thief River Falls - 50.56 (38)
  18. Chisago Lakes Area - 50.19 (57)
  19. Alexandria - 49.97 (36)
  20. Monticello - 49.82 (45)
  21. Delano - 49.64 (56)
  22. Mankato East - 49.57 (43)
  23. Cloquet - 48.85 (61)
  24. Little Falls - 48.45 (41)
  25. Dassel-Cokato - 48.14 (52)
  26. Waconia - 48.08 (1)
  27. Austin - 47.96 (13)
  28. St. Paul Central - 47.93 (8)
  29. Stewartville - 47.88 (60)
  30. Columbia Heights - 46.89 (21)
  31. Hutchinson - 46.79 (27)
  32. Sauk Rapids-Rice - 46.43 (48)
  33. Sartell-St. Stephen - 46.36 (14)
  34. St. Cloud Apollo - 46.04 (47)
  35. Fridley - 45.73 (63)
  36. Grand Rapids - 45.37 (31)
  37. Holy Family Catholic - 44.96 (5)
  38. Mound Westonka - 44.67 (29)
  39. Faribault - 44.61 (19)
  40. Kasson-Mantorville - 44.26 (62)
  41. Minneapolis Henry - 43.47 (28)
  42. Holy Angels - 42.08 (54)
  43. Benilde-St. Margaret's - 41.88 (10)
  44. Becker - 40.99 (35)
  45. Hibbing - 39.96 (16)
  46. St. Paul Harding - 39.13 (64)
  47. Duluth Denfeld - 38.52 (6)
  48. Spring Lake Park - 38.37 (40)
  49. Winona - 37.09 (7)
  50. St. Anthony Village - 36.97 (25)
  51. South St. Paul - 36.27 (32)
  52. Zimmerman - 35.77 (49)
  53. Totino-Grace - 35.52 (50)
  54. St. Paul Highland Park - 35.5 (23)
  55. New Ulm - 34.59 (51)
  56. St. Paul Como Park - 34.07 (33)
  57. Princeton - 32.85 (53)
  58. Big Lake - 32.72 (12)
  59. Worthington - 32.52 (4)
  60. Willmar - 31.27 (42)
  61. Richfield - 27.37 (59)
  62. North Branch - 27.13 (55)
  63. Blake - 24.95 (37)
  64. Albert Lea - 0 (2)
Class AA
  1. St. Croix Lutheran - 61.03 (10)
  2. Barnum - 59.32 (79)
  3. Eden Valley-Watkins - 58.6 (49)
  4. New Richland-H-E-G - 58.16 (19)
  5. Maple Lake - 57.66 (67)
  6. Maple River - 57.54 (50)
  7. Long Prairie-Grey Eagle - 57.46 (89)
  8. Melrose - 57.14 (35)
  9. Breck - 57.03 (42)
  10. Hawley - 56.36 (37)
  11. Redwood Valley - 56.04 (15)
  12. St. Cloud Cathedral - 55.82 (85)
  13. Caledonia - 55.12 (106)
  14. Braham - 55.12 (98)
  15. Crookston - 54.95 (114)
  16. Lake City - 54.81 (115)
  17. Minneapolis Roosevelt - 54.53 (74)
  18. Breckenridge - 54.44 (8)
  19. Tracy-Milroy-Balaton - 53.98 (46)
  20. Crosby-Ironton - 53.64 (66)
  21. Waterville-Elysian-Morristown - 53.59 (28)
  22. Waseca - 53.41 (117)
  23. Sauk Centre - 53.37 (29)
  24. Brooklyn Center - 53.24 (11)
  25. Glencoe-Silver Lake - 53.12 (84)
  26. Rockford - 53.01 (36)
  27. Jordan - 53 (92)
  28. Esko - 52.79 (18)
  29. Pipestone Area - 52.45 (3)
  30. Barnesville - 51.98 (64)
  31. Jackson County Central - 51.92 (9)
  32. St. Charles - 51.54 (119)
  33. Dover-Eyota - 51.53 (94)
  34. Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop - 51.37 (125)
  35. Fairmont - 51.06 (22)
  36. International Falls - 51.04 (116)
  37. Annandale - 50.85 (17)
  38. Pierz - 50.79 (1)
  39. Rochester Lourdes - 50.39 (57)
  40. Minnehaha Academy - 50.17 (43)
  41. Montevideo - 50.15 (23)
  42. Concordia Academy-Roseville - 50.09 (82)
  43. Virginia - 49.75 (99)
  44. Watertown-Mayer - 49.28 (65)
  45. Pillager - 49.11 (34)
  46. Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial - 48.87 (78)
  47. Moose Lake-Willow River - 48.84 (63)
  48. LeSueur-Henderson - 48.83 (93)
  49. Windom Area - 48.72 (27)
  50. New Life Academy - 48.66 (90)
  51. BOLD - 48.55 (72)
  52. Proctor - 48.48 (25)
  53. Pine City - 48.15 (113)
  54. Minnewaska Area - 48.03 (80)
  55. Litchfield - 47.65 (6)
  56. Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta - 47.45 (62)
  57. St. Paul Academy - 47.35 (5)
  58. Byron - 47.12 (73)
  59. Perham - 46.77 (4)
  60. Pequot Lakes - 46.72 (71)
  61. Providence Academy - 46.59 (87)
  62. Pine Island - 46.56 (39)
  63. St. James Area - 46.43 (40)
  64. La Crescent - 46.05 (54)
  65. Deer River - 45.81 (95)
  66. Tri-City United - 45.77 (88)
  67. Plainview-Elgin-Millville - 45.56 (59)
  68. Lac qui Parle Valley - 45.55 (58)
  69. Staples-Motley - 45.35 (30)
  70. St. Paul Humboldt - 45.16 (126)
  71. Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton - 44.89 (44)
  72. Roseau - 44.69 (118)
  73. FAIR School - 44.06 (127)
  74. New London-Spicer - 44.06 (16)
  75. Hinckley-Finlayson - 43.91 (112)
  76. Luverne - 43.79 (45)
  77. St. John's Prep - 43.51 (12)
  78. Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted - 43.46 (69)
  79. St. Croix Prep - 43.38 (111)
  80. Trinity School - 43.27 (103)
  81. Chatfield - 43.25 (91)
  82. Cannon Falls - 43.19 (61)
  83. Badger/Greenbush-Middle River - 43.11 (110)
  84. Park Rapids Area - 43.09 (41)
  85. St. Peter - 42.84 (52)
  86. Prairie Seeds Academy - 42.58 (102)
  87. St. Paul Washington - 41.97 (124)
  88. Great River - 41.88 (104)
  89. Frazee - 41.88 (20)
  90. Triton - 41.29 (107)
  91. Blue Earth Area - 41.1 (13)
  92. Norwood-Young America - 40.85 (33)
  93. Eveleth-Gilbert - 40.68 (122)
  94. Milaca - 40.61 (31)
  95. Martin County West - 40.52 (14)
  96. Rush City - 40.39 (109)
  97. Osakis - 39.43 (2)
  98. Sibley East - 39.31 (48)
  99. Benson - 38.95 (100)
  100. Spectrum - 38.93 (121)
  101. Paynesville Area - 38.88 (38)
  102. Belle Plaine - 38.75 (56)
  103. Mora - 38.33 (86)
  104. Hayfield - 38.26 (53)
  105. Holdingford - 38.13 (24)
  106. St. Agnes - 37.75 (97)
  107. Foley - 37.14 (60)
  108. Bagley - 36.76 (76)
  109. East Grand Forks - 36.66 (77)
  110. Two Harbors - 36.15 (105)
  111. Mounds Park Academy - 36 (120)
  112. Lewiston-Altura - 35.4 (81)
  113. Winona Cotter - 34.94 (70)
  114. Aitkin - 34.67 (83)
  115. Yellow Medicine East - 34.6 (21)
  116. Duluth Marshall - 33.18 (26)
  117. Kenyon-Wanamingo - 32.61 (108)
  118. Medford - 31.88 (75)
  119. Minneapolis Edison - 31.81 (32)
  120. St. Paul Prep - 31.75 (129)
  121. Mayer Lutheran - 31.58 (47)
  122. International School of MN - 30.83 (128)
  123. Warroad - 26.47 (51)
  124. Zumbrota-Mazeppa - 26.24 (68)
  125. Pelican Rapids - 25.8 (55)
  126. Greenway - 17.41 (101)
  127. Mesabi East - 0 (96)
  128. Wadena-Deer Creek - 0 (7)
  129. Hmong Academy - 0 (123)
Class A
  1. Rushford-Peterson - 59.21 (44)
  2. Nevis - 58.07 (33)
  3. Cass Lake-Bena - 57.53 (1)
  4. Red Lake - 56.57 (32)
  5. Minneapolis North - 56.23 (27)
  6. Canby - 55.99 (83)
  7. Parkers Prairie - 55.92 (60)
  8. Central MN Christian - 55.74 (134)
  9. Maranatha Christian - 55.54 (67)
  10. Floodwood - 55.17 (104)
  11. Battle Lake - 55.03 (111)
  12. West Central Area - 53.47 (57)
  13. Win-E-Mac - 53.26 (13)
  14. Fosston - 53.18 (77)
  15. Hillcrest Lutheran Academy - 53.17 (78)
  16. Park Christian - 53.12 (73)
  17. Mankato Loyola - 53.03 (68)
  18. Dawson-Boyd - 52.36 (41)
  19. United South Central - 52.31 (16)
  20. Kimball Area - 51.79 (63)
  21. Murray County Central - 51.74 (116)
  22. Bertha-Hewitt - 51.65 (85)
  23. St. Clair - 51.61 (39)
  24. Southwest Christian - 51.57 (62)
  25. Springfield - 51.38 (99)
  26. Pine River-Backus - 51.36 (15)
  27. Waubun - 51.35 (144)
  28. Spring Grove - 51.17 (139)
  29. Minnesota Transitions Charter - 51.1 (133)
  30. Mountain Iron-Buhl - 51.03 (147)
  31. Goodhue - 50.62 (109)
  32. Grand Meadow - 50.52 (128)
  33. Legacy Christian - 50.45 (21)
  34. Blooming Prairie - 50.43 (7)
  35. Randolph - 50.03 (150)
  36. Browerville - 50.02 (18)
  37. Lakeview Christian - 49.7 (102)
  38. North Woods - 49.53 (91)
  39. Kittson County Central - 49.18 (70)
  40. Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City - 49.12 (54)
  41. Ortonville - 48.6 (79)
  42. Hills-Beaver Creek - 48.59 (112)
  43. Nova Classical Academy - 48.47 (154)
  44. Stephen-Argyle - 48.2 (142)
  45. New York Mills - 47.84 (10)
  46. Mountain Lake Area - 47.82 (115)
  47. Northern Freeze - 47.7 (76)
  48. Mahnomen - 47.33 (5)
  49. Fertile-Beltrami - 47.09 (36)
  50. NCE/U-H - 47.05 (42)
  51. PACT Charter - 46.81 (81)
  52. Walker-Hackensack-Akeley - 46.62 (29)
  53. Upsala - 46.22 (46)
  54. Lyle/Austin Pacelli - 46.22 (126)
  55. Menahga - 45.97 (53)
  56. Fond du Lac Ojibwe - 45.93 (6)
  57. Southwest MN Christian - 45.9 (43)
  58. Cristo Rey Jesuit - 45.9 (136)
  59. Verndale - 45.81 (49)
  60. Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton - 45.58 (24)
  61. Ellsworth - 45.36 (106)
  62. Brandon/Evansville - 45.29 (3)
  63. Wrenshall - 45.1 (146)
  64. Warren-Alvarado-Oslo - 44.89 (88)
  65. Ely - 44.7 (149)
  66. Adrian - 44.63 (143)
  67. New Ulm Cathedral - 44.58 (152)
  68. Red Lake County - 44.31 (129)
  69. Sebeka - 44.22 (50)
  70. Swanville - 43.72 (34)
  71. Houston - 43.6 (125)
  72. Westbrook-Walnut Grove - 43.56 (130)
  73. CHOF - 43.55 (124)
  74. Northome/Kelliher - 43.36 (94)
  75. Heritage Christian - 42.88 (19)
  76. Alden-Conger - 42.76 (131)
  77. Hope Academy - 42.66 (157)
  78. Madelia - 42.4 (93)
  79. Kingsland - 42.17 (45)
  80. MACCRAY - 41.93 (25)
  81. Cromwell - 41.57 (14)
  82. Nashwauk-Keewatin - 41.14 (148)
  83. Hill City - 41.11 (141)
  84. T/ML/GHEC - 40.91 (105)
  85. Henning - 40.88 (55)
  86. Lakeview - 40.11 (66)
  87. Fillmore Central - 40 (74)
  88. Bigfork - 39.81 (40)
  89. Blackduck - 39.76 (69)
  90. Bethlehem Academy - 39.35 (35)
  91. East Central - 39.22 (38)
  92. Minnesota Valley Lutheran - 38.86 (92)
  93. Cherry - 38.2 (151)
  94. Sleepy Eye Saint Mary's - 38.06 (90)
  95. Isle - 37.6 (137)
  96. Christian Life School - 37.59 (100)
  97. Fulda - 37.35 (110)
  98. Lester Prairie/Holy Trinity - 37.23 (47)
  99. Ogilvie - 37.12 (114)
  100. Lake Park-Audubon - 36.99 (26)
  101. West Lutheran - 36.8 (80)
  102. Chisholm - 36.78 (56)
  103. MN Academy for the Deaf - 36.72 (145)
  104. Minneota - 36.69 (98)
  105. Ada-Borup - 36.41 (11)
  106. Carlton - 36.29 (123)
  107. Southland - 36.21 (23)
  108. Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa - 35.38 (8)
  109. Edgerton - 35.35 (89)
  110. McGregor - 35.33 (138)
  111. Math & Science Academy - 35.17 (158)
  112. Littlefork-Big Falls - 34.89 (153)
  113. Underwood - 34.7 (22)
  114. Heron Lake-Okabena - 34.32 (86)
  115. Northland - 33.71 (120)
  116. Wabasha-Kellogg - 33.55 (51)
  117. Norman County West - 33.19 (132)
  118. Lanesboro - 32.95 (52)
  119. Community of Peace Academy - 32.92 (155)
  120. Russell-Tyler-Ruthton - 32.73 (31)
  121. Hancock - 32.61 (20)
  122. Onamia - 31.88 (87)
  123. Cedar Mountain/Comfrey - 31.79 (48)
  124. Red Rock Central - 31.39 (119)
  125. Cleveland - 31.26 (95)
  126. Mabel-Canton - 30.82 (127)
  127. Royalton - 30.18 (17)
  128. Silver Bay - 29.98 (61)
  129. Glenville-Emmons - 29.44 (97)
  130. Bethany Academy - 29.12 (107)
  131. Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley - 27.54 (12)
  132. Laporte - 27.47 (103)
  133. Climax/Fisher - 27 (28)
  134. Mesabi Academy - 26.75 (135)
  135. Hope Lutheran - 24.91 (101)
  136. Calvin Christian - 24.66 (156)
  137. Goodridge/Grygla - 24.33 (65)
  138. Sacred Heart - 24.19 (64)
  139. Nicollet - 23.66 (108)
  140. Cook County - 22.77 (71)
  141. Renville County West - 22.45 (59)
  142. Sleepy Eye - 22.26 (118)
  143. Schaeffer Academy - 20.69 (75)
  144. Wheaton/Herman-Norcross - 20.02 (72)
  145. LeRoy-Ostrander - 16.91 (96)
  146. Clearbrook-Gonvick - 14.88 (58)
  147. Academy for Sciences & Ag - 0 (140)
  148. Ashby - 0 (4)
  149. Wabasso - 0 (30)
  150. South Ridge - 0 (37)
  151. Liberty Classical Academy - 0 (84)
  152. Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig - 0 (159)
  153. Rothsay - 0 (2)
  154. Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg - 0 (9)
  155. Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart - 0 (82)
  156. Lake of the Woods - 0 (113)
  157. Learning for Leadership - 0 (117)
  158. North Lakes Academy - 0 (121)
  159. Northeast Range - 0 (122)
  160. Cambridge Christian - 0 (160)

2015 East Metro Showcase and 5AAAA Battle

Prologue
The East Metro Showcase returns after a year off.  This year its 3 local games at Johnson.  A quality walking taco as always but 1 of my 2 cans of Pepsi was with real sugar, YUCK!  Like a bad mixed drink.  Sparse crowd early but a very good crowd for the late game.  Then off to Maple Grove's new home Osseo Junior High for their critical section 5AAAA showdown with Wayzata.  Nightly sponsor Rush Creek putting out a high quality pulled pork sandwich meal deal.  Fun venue with a big set of stands on 1 side, stage on the other and a large set of bleachers behind 1 basket.

Number of Teams I've Seen: 132 (49 courts)

Beverage Consumption Counter: 1116.9 ounces (66 days, 96 games, 2 scrimmages added on)
  • Pepsi: 560 ounces
  • Coke: 172 ounces
  • Dr. Pepper: 36 ounces
  • Sprite: 116 ounces
  • Sierra Mist: 12 ounces
  • Barq's Root Beer: 20 ounces
  • A&W Root Beer: 24 ounces
  • Red Powerade: 80 ounces
  • Red Gatorade: 80 ounces
  • Water: 500 ml
Hot Dog Counter: 12

Song of the Day
Bruno Mars - Tonight

Game #1: Columbia Heights vs St. Paul Central
Central has played an absolutely brutal schedule so their record is deceptive.  16-13 Columbia Heights after a Montroy Scott hoop at the 8:50 mark.  Central would reply with a 15-2 run.  Heights star Jerrett Baptiste on the bench thanks to 2 fouls for most of that.  28-22 Central at the break.   Heights comes out in the 2nd half on a 10-2 run and thanks to a Scott Howell technical it would extend to 46-40 with 8:24 left.  48-43 Heights when Central goes on a 10-0 run with Baptiste sitting with 4 fouls.  Sam Gubbrud and Jack Beckman with bombs to end the run.  Baptiste back in at the 3:11 mark.  He converts a layup to tie the game and a 3 point play to take the lead with 1:18 left.  Sam Gubbrud a 3 point play with 21 seconds left to cut the Heights lead to 2.  Heights turns it over and Central draws up a play for Sam Gubbrud.  He catches on the right wing and has nothing.  Nothing off the bounce and its a scramble.  It ends up with Beckman and his left wing 3 is good at the buzzer for a 59-58 Central win.  Montroy Scott leads Columbia Heights with 24 points.  Jack Beckman with 15 of his 19 in the 2nd half to lead the Minutemen.  Sam Gubbrud adds 15.

Game #2: Prior Lake vs Minneapolis Henry
Connor Bair leading an early 12-1 Prior Lake run for a 19-8 Lakers lead at 11:50.  The loud Henry bench being a factor in a good way.  33-24 Prior Lake at the half.  Henry comes out of the locker room on a 11-2 run to promptly tie the game.  Demetrius Edwards-Brown doing it outside and Julian Jackson doing it inside.  Edwards-Brown for 3 to end a 18-6 spurt.  42-39 Henry 11:10 left.  Kevin McKiernan with a pair of critical 3s for the Lakers.  But its Bair from the short corner vs the Henry 2-3 that is too much to handle.  Henry has no answer for him.  Prior Lake wins 70-66.  Connor Bair goes for 28.  Demetrius Edwards-Brown goes for 18 of his 25 in the 2nd half.  Julian Jackson 14 of his 20 in the 2nd half.

Game 3: #8AAAA Cretin-Derham Hall at #2AAA St. Paul Johnson
Johnson's athletes having some impact early on but Donnell Gresham getting it done with a pair of early 3s and a drive.  13-8 CDH at the 11 minute mark.  Jordan Ammons and Chris Perry holding Jalen Mobley in check.  He goes 1-8 in the half.  Eric Elliot with a couple late hoops to keep Johnson within 34-29 at the break.

Jalen Mobley coast to coast for 2 after draining a 3 off a ball screen.  48-40 CDH at 14:20.  Gresham counters with 5 in a row of his own.  56-46  CDH at 10:55.  Then frosh Daniel Oturu with a putback for a 3 point play, Sam Neumann with a transition bomb and a Joe Rosga bucket.  65-47 CDH with 9:10 left and the Raiders look in complete control.  But Johnson won't go away.  Elliot with a 3 point play, Mobley with a steal for 2.  Elliot 2 offensive boards for 3 points.  67-59 with 5:57 left.  Then Johnson turns it over on 3 of the next 4 possessions.  Elliot for 2 and 3 but Neumann counters those with a pair of daggers from deep and the last one with serious guts in transition.    Elliot to the rack and a tip in with 1:30 left but CDH still leads by 8.  CDH turns it over for 2 Mobley free throws.  Savon Parker for 3 with 54 seconds left and Elliot with a tip after Gresham misses 2 freebies.  3 point game but Joe Rosga makes 4-4 FTs (11 of 11 for the game, all 2nd half) to put it away.  Cretin-Derham Hall wins 88-83.  Joe Rosga leads CDH with 27 points, 19 of those in the 2nd half.  Sam Neumann 19 of his 25 after halftime including 5 3s.  Donnell Gresham 13 of his 23 in the 1st half.  You have to hold down the big 3 if you play CDH.  Eric Elliot goes for 28 for Johnson.  Jalen Mobley 17 but only 5-16 shooting on my sheet with 1-8 in the 1st half.

Game 4: Wayzata at #3AAAA Maple Grove
Brad Davison distributing freely in this one.  It starts up high to Reed Nikko for a dunk, then low on the backdoor to Tywhon Pickford for a pair of layups.  Johnny Beeninga carrying the Wayzata offense.  A transition 3 and a run out for a layup.  Jack Sowada for 2 and a Gavin Baumgartner 3 point play tie the game at 20 at the 7:21 mark.  Wayzata goes for 7 in a row late in the half only to see Maple Grove get the last 4.  Wayzata 34-33 at the half.

Beeninga with a 3, then soph Ryan Lindberg with a pair of jumpers for 7-0 run and its Wayzata 48-40 with 8:20 to play.  They slowed the pace and ran their stuff with great success.   Maple Grove counters with 5 in a row before Beeninga goes for 5 in a row and Austin Slater buries a straight away 3 with 5:25 left.  56-45 Wayzata leading and the Crimson are in serious trouble.

But Brad Davison decides to take over.  He had just scored his first field goal of the night.  He goes for back to back 3 point plays and adds an assist for a layup.  The Crimson reclaim the lead on a pair of Austin Mathison free throws with 3:16 left.  12-0 in just over 2 minutes.  Wayzata misses a putback and a pair of freebies.  Maple Grove makes a free throw and Nikko spikes a shot inside with 1:42 left in a 2 point game.  Davison makes 3 of 4 free throws, Wayzata misses 3 of 4.  Nikko runs out for a dunk.  Davison closes it out with 4 straight free throws.  Maple Grove comes from 11 down late to defeat Wayzata 67-59.  The Crimson close the game with a 22-3 run in the last 4:34.  Johnny Beeninga leads Wayzata with 24 points.  Jack Sowada 11.  Brad Davison leads Maple Grove with 16 points and 11 assists on my sheet.  I had him 3-8 FG and 10-12 at the charity stripe.  Not the usual night but did he come up big down the stretch.  This one likely locks Wayzata into the 3rd seed in section 5 but 2 vs 3 not really a big deal as the likely section semifinal rematch is at Rogers (Czar's Note: MSHSL says this but my spies tell me semifinals may be home site which is huge).  They'll want this one back after being in complete control going to the last 5 minutes.

A couple of wild happenings.  Maple Grove up 2 late in the JV game.  MG kids gets mauled, jump ball called.  Kid spikes the ball at the official's feet and correctly gets a T (quiz, what happens to the possession arrow).  Wayzata misses both free throws to tie.  They get the possession, kid bunny hop travels on the catch but buries the game winning 3 for a 1 point Trojans win.

Then late in the varsity game its Jack Sowada shooting in front of the MG students.  Kids are in front of the front row playing leap frog (fairly close to the baseline, remember the setup and its a junior high).  Free throw up and no good.  Refs direct the students to back up (OK fine) and get on the PA to calm them down.  But in a bit of insanity, they have Sowada retake the free throw.  Is that allowed?

Tigers put out the Blaze

Prologue
Off to Burnsville to complete the season sweep of the South Suburban.  The Blaze hosting the hot Farmington Tigers.  Farmington with 4 straight wins after 3 straight losses that were by combined 6 points.  Burnsville on the other hand in a stretch of losing 6 out of 8.  Both teams 3-6 after 1 rotation in conference play.  This game would break that tie.  The Burnsville band on hand but only 8 pregame minutes from them.  But they make up for it by sticking around all game and performing post game (a rare site, most bands leave after halftime).   A bottle of Coke washes down a quality slice of Domino's cheese pizza.

Number of Teams I've Seen: 131 (48 courts)

Beverage Consumption Counter: 1072.9 ounces (65 days, 92 games, 2 scrimmages added on)
  • Pepsi: 536 ounces
  • Coke: 152 ounces
  • Dr. Pepper: 36 ounces
  • Sprite: 116 ounces
  • Sierra Mist: 12 ounces
  • Barq's Root Beer: 20 ounces
  • A&W Root Beer: 24 ounces
  • Red Powerade: 80 ounces
  • Red Gatorade: 80 ounces
  • Water: 500 ml
Hot Dog Counter: 12

Song of the Day
Daft Punk - Get Lucky

Game Time
Matt Anderson with 2 transition 3s in a quick 8-0 Farmington run.  Burnsville rebounds but Farmington keeps a 15-9 lead thanks to a running bank for a Wyatt Ferm 3 point play and a Zach Speikers reverse layup.   8-0 Burnsville run with guard Michael Gillen turning a steal into 2 freebies and adding a floater.  19-17 Burnsville at 7:40.  Jason Gumm with his 2nd 3 of the half for a 22-19 Blaze lead at 6:30.  But its 15-6 Farmington the rest of the half.  Ferm inside out look for 3 and Speikers with a 3.  Soph Sam Wilson beats the halftime horn for a 34-28 Farmington lead at half.

Burnsville comes out strong in the 2nd half with a 16-6 run in the 1st 4 and a half minutes.  Soph PG Jackson Martens with a line drive 3 and scores after a blocked shot on the other end.  Alex Davis ends the run with 1 3 and then a set play for 2 screens on the backside and skip it for another bomb.  44-40 Blaze after the run.  Lucas Berg scoop to the hoop and cut for a 3 point play.  Ferm also cuts for an easy bucket against the Blaze D.  49-48 Farmington back on top as we go back and forth the rest of the way.  Tucker Shepley a large portion of the offense for Burnsville in the 2nd half.  He puts back his own miss and counters a Speikers reverse layup with 3 more post buckets.  58-56 Burnsville with 3:54 left.  Anderson ties it with 2 free throws with 3:26 left.  Burnsville misses a 3 and Farmington takes time with 2:55 left.  Burnsville comes out of the timeout with their only possession of the night of zone.  Farmington very patient vs the 1-3-1 and its Speikers knocking down a straight away 3 off of good ball movement from the corner to the wing and across the top guy in the zone.  Tucker Shepley blocked at the other end and Burnsville needs a block of their own to stop the break coming back.  Farmington will hold with 90 seconds left.  They make the 1st bonus free throw but miss the 1st back end, then after a Blaze miss, they miss a front end.  Burnsville fouled with 34.8 left in a 4 point game, they miss the front end.  Speikers makes the play of the game by diving on the loose rebound and getting Farmington's final timeout to save possession.  But its not over as Farmington misses another front end.  Burnsville makes 1 of 2 at the other end as Tucker Shepley slips America's inbounds play.  That makes it a 3 point game with 18.3 left but Speikers seals it with a pair of free throws.  Farmington wins 65-59.

Post Game
Burnsville falls to 3-7 in the South Suburban and 7-11 overall.  They've now lost 6 out of 7 in the new year with the only win a 2 point home win vs Rosemount.  Tucker Shepley leads the Blaze with 14 points, 12 of those in the 2nd half.  Brett Shepley adds 10 and Jason Gumm had all 10 of his in the 1st half.  The upcoming schedule is rough as they have Eagan, at Lakeville North, at Shakopee, Apple Valley, Prior Lake.

Farmington is now 7-11 overall, 4-6 in the South Suburban.  They've now won 6 of their last 9 with the 3 close losses mentioned before.  Zach Speikers leads the way with 16 points and 4 boards on my sheet.  The hustle play to dive on that missed free throw was huge.  His jump shot wasn't there and his movement is clearly limited with the bad ACL in the right knee.  But the intangibles definitely impact the team even though its not a ton of minutes.  Wyatt Ferm held to 12 points on 4-12 FGs.  He's one of the most off the radar kids out there.  Matt Anderson added 13.  Next week is a big week for the Tigers with home games vs Lakeville North and Apple Valley.

Abbreviation Bowl 2015

Prologue
Back to St. Paul for the 2015 Abbreviation Bowl as Fine Arts Interdisciplinary Resource School (FAIR) travels to The Sal to take on Christ's Household of Faith (CHOF).  As usual at The Sal minimal concessions but we have a Red Gatorade to keep the beverage counter rolling. Fairly small crowd but The Sal does a nice job of amplifying noise.  Funny moment in the JV game with kids passing a phone around on the bench during the game to look at pictures.

Number of Teams I've Seen: 129 (47 courts)

Beverage Consumption Counter: 1052.9 ounces (64 days, 91 games, 2 scrimmages added on)
  • Pepsi: 536 ounces
  • Coke: 132 ounces
  • Dr. Pepper: 36 ounces
  • Sprite: 116 ounces
  • Sierra Mist: 12 ounces
  • Barq's Root Beer: 20 ounces
  • A&W Root Beer: 24 ounces
  • Red Powerade: 80 ounces
  • Red Gatorade: 80 ounces
  • Water: 500 ml
Hot Dog Counter: 12

Song of the Day
Break my stride - Matthew Wilder

Game Time
FAIR gets off to a good start with a 9-3 lead just 3 minutes in.  Then its Laron Reynolds with an offensive board for 2 free throws, Armani Scott for 2 and KreSean Greert for 3.  That puts FAIR up 26-15 at the 7:12 mark.  Kit Piepkorn with a crazy scoop for 2 and Jacob Bluhm takes a turnover for a layup.  But a  CHOF 3 at the buzzer is waved off. That keeps the FAIR lead at 32-21 at the half.

FAIR adds the 3 of the 2nd half for their biggest lead of the night.  35-21 Falcons at 16:09 with Scott scoring his 7th bucket of the night.  Then the turnovers come and its all CHOF from there.  Anders Strandlund drives for a free throw, converts a 3 point play, adds an inside bucket and off a BLOB buries a foul line jumper.  Then a scramble situation and its Kit Piepkorn to Tomas Piepkorn for 3.  The CHOF run is 18-0.  Then its Tomas and Kit with 2 more bombs. Scott had a 3 piont play to break the 18-0 run and he puts back a miss to break a streak of only 1 FG in 10 min for FAIR.  A turnover turns into another Strandlund bucket.  33-7 CHOF run over 12 minutes.  54-42 Lions with 4 minutes left.  Free throws late make the final margin 66-51 CHOF.

Post Game
Armani Scott finishes with 21 to lead FAIR.  8th Grader KreSean Greert adds 16 with 4 3s.  Turnovers were a killer.  Some were vs the CHOF 1-2-2 and diamond presses, but many sloppy ones too.  The Falcons fall to 5-5 overall.  They visit Prairie Seeds in a Twin Cities Conference game tomorrow.

CHOF improves to 7-6 overall.  Kit Piepkorn struggled with his shot but still finished with 18.  Anders Strandlund had 12 of his 14 in the 2nd half and was a major factor in the 2nd half.  Tim Rohlf added 16.  Tomas Piepkorn with all 8 of his points in the 2nd half including a couple of dagger 3s in the big run.  The top 8 guys in the CHOF rotation all return next season.  They also have a quick road turnaround as they are at St. Croix Prep tomorrow.   They'll be looking at a borderline seed for a 1st round playoff game at home.

Rebelling against a doubleheader

Prologue
Doubleheader week continues with a boys/girls double dip at Champlin Park on Tuesday.  Coaches vs Cancer night always a quality use of The Czar's wealth.  The Champlin Park students went Taylor University Silent Night for the boys game keeping quiet until the Rebels reached 10 points.  Nice touch to go with the pink shirts.  Great atmosphere for the big game.  I picked a bad viewing spot next to the Maple Grove students.  Rookie mistake.  But a corner slice of sausage from Jet's Pizza was one of the better slices of the season.

Then its Wednesday night action in the St. Paul City conference with Harding hosting Humboldt.  A hot dog keeps that counter moving.  Sprite on Tuesday and Powerade on Wednesday keep the beverage counter moving.  Rochester Community and Technical College looking on.  Thanks to the late finish at Champlin Park that's why this is up a day late.

Number of Teams I've Seen: 128 (46 courts)

Beverage Consumption Counter: 1032.9 ounces (63 days, 90 games, 2 scrimmages added on)
  • Pepsi: 536 ounces
  • Coke: 132 ounces
  • Dr. Pepper: 36 ounces
  • Sprite: 116 ounces
  • Sierra Mist: 12 ounces
  • Barq's Root Beer: 20 ounces
  • A&W Root Beer: 24 ounces
  • Red Powerade: 80 ounces
  • Red Gatorade: 60 ounces
  • Water: 500 ml
Hot Dog Counter: 12

Song of the Day
Rebel Rebel - David Bowie

Tuesday: #6AAAA Maple Grove at #1AAAA Champlin Park
This would appear to be the last serious challenge for the top ranked Rebels until a potential section final rematch (but Wayzata may have something to say about that, we'll see a preview of that on Saturday).  Brad Davison drew the assignment guarding JT Gibson.  Theo John with a dunk and then a block to a Jeremy Johnson 3 followed by a Gibson hoop.  11-6 Champlin Park at 14:20.  Then its Davison for 3 and John sitting with his 2nd foul.  Davison finds Reed Nikko for a 3 point play and buries another 3.  Nikko completes the 18-3 Crimson run with a tip dunk.  24-14 Crimson at 7:10.  Theo John back in and goes to the jump hook over Nikko before sitting out the last 5:43 with 3 fouls.  McKinley Wright spins for 2 and Gibson finds him for 3 to end a 7-0 run.  Champlin Park ends the half on an 8-1 run with Gibson setting a solid screen for a Marty Hill 3.  Hill with a steal for 2 and then finds Gibson for 3 just before the break.  31 all at the half. 

Heavyweight punches thrown by the teams (did you think I'd say media there?) for the 1st 11 minutes of the 2nd half.  That was interrupted by some early confusion over fouls at the scorers table.  Turnover for a Gibson layup and a Johnson 3 for a 43-41 Rebels lead.  That's countered by another Tywhon Pickford cut for a layup and a Davison steal for 2 freebies.  Champlin Park makes 4 bonus free throws but Jack Hutchinson converts a 3 point play and Davison to Pickford for a layup.  52-51 Maple Grove 7:40 left.  Then Champlin Park takes a timeout to avoid a turnover and that may have changed their fortune.

Gibson drives for an easy hoop.  Theo John comes back in with 4 fouls and 5:48 left in a bit of a gamble.  Gibson scores again and Davison picks up his 4th at 5:22 but you have to leave him him   Johnson with another 3 to stretch the lead to 58-52.  That's the 1st time all half the margin has been more than 3 either way.  Maple Grove timeout with 4:55 left and Champlin Park counters with a 2-3 zone (unseen so far this season).  That results in a couple of misses.  Gibson converts one of those.  Then a tick tack reaching foul on Davison with 3:48 left and he's gone.  Wright converts both free throws to push the lead to 10 and scores again to end the 13-0 run.  Only 1 Maple Grove FG in the last 7:40 and in the last minute after the result is decided.  Champlin Park closes the game on a 22-6 run in the last 6:50.  They maintain the top spot in the polls with a 73-58 win.  JT Gibson with 20 points, Jeremy Johnson outstanding with 18, McKinley Wright with 17.  Tywhon Pickford leads Maple Grove with 17, many off nice cuts to the rim.  Both him and McKinley Wright were very good crashing the glass.  Brad Davison scores 16 points to go with a handful of assists and rebounds.  I had him missing 7 of his last 9 shots.

The chess match in this game was could Maple Grove keep a 2nd big on the floor and play slow and physical vs a 4 guard Champlin Park lineup.  As it turned out, the answer was a resounding no as Maple Grove ended up having to go smaller to matchup with Hill and Johnson.  Mitchell Rekstad has been an effective shooter for the Crimson but didn't see all that much time.  I think he'd really help the lineup with more time and not just in guard oriented games like this.

Wednesday: Humboldt at Harding
No Demond Dawson for Humboldt which takes 20 points a night out of their lineup.  That doesn't both the Hawks as they go on a 12-0 run in just under 3 minutes.  Second leading scorer Marion Moore up to the task for the Hawks with 5 points in the run.  Harding's leading scorer Essa Adam doesn't disappoint.  He buries back to back 3s in a 8-0 Harding run.  Moore with 2 freebies and a 3 point play.  Then Adam continues to abuse the Hawks 3-2 zone.  High ball screen to a kick to him in the right corner (low guys not playing the corner and wing too high to get there for that cover).  He goes back to back from deep on that.  Then its Ben Thompson off the same action.  Adam with another bomb in the 18-2 Harding run.  Moore ends the half with 6 points and Jacob Andrew with a pair of 3s.  42-38 Harding at half with 8 triples.  Adam with 6 of them.

10-3 run for Humboldt to start the half before 2 more Knights bombs.  55-54 Humboldt at 9:58 after a layup from soph forward La'Vonta Bryant.  Adam still feeling it from the deep beyond with 2 more splashes.  Then he pulls out the drive and off-hand lefty floater on the baseline.  64-58 Harding inside 5 to play.  That stretches to 68-60 with 2:05 left but the end is still interesting.  Humboldt bucket and Bryant puts back a miss.    Harding misses with 55 ticks left for 1 free throw.  Then a jump ball to Humboldt with 41.35 left down 3.  Its all Moore isos late which was a bit strange.  No good look for the Hawks late.  Adam makes 2 free throws with 0.43 left to seal it.  Harding wins 70-65 thanks to 14 makes from 3.  Could easily have been 25 if they had run the high screen stuff more in the 2nd half.  The corners were lonely vs the zone.  Essa Adam 10 bombs and 34 points.  Marion Moore scores 18 of his 24 in the 1st half.  I really like him as a local JUCO guy but his left hand is limited.

Super 60 MLK Double Dip

Prologue
Off to Roosevelt for their section of the MLK Dream Classic put on by Tim Williams (Mpls College Prep Head Coach and runs Super 60 Sports).  We get MLK quotes from each captain before both games.  Plus some honorary halftime entertainment.  Early dinner before the 6 PM game so just a bottle of Sprite for the beverage counter.  Good crowd for the early game and almost dead for the late game.

Number of Teams I've Seen: 124 (44 courts)

Beverage Consumption Counter: 992.9 ounces (61 days, 87 games, 2 scrimmages added on)
  • Pepsi: 536 ounces
  • Coke: 132 ounces
  • Dr. Pepper: 36 ounces
  • Sprite: 96 ounces
  • Sierra Mist: 12 ounces
  • Barq's Root Beer: 20 ounces
  • A&W Root Beer: 24 ounces
  • Red Powerade: 60 ounces
  • Red Gatorade: 60 ounces
  • Water: 500 ml
Hot Dog Counter: 11

Song of the Day
Fight The Power - Public Enemy (clean version)

Game 1: St. Paul Academy vs #1AA Caledonia
This was a rematch of last year's state AA quarterfinal.  Dalante Peyton starts the SPA offense with a 3.  Then Abdul Osman gets a dunked blocked and star frosh Owen King turns that into a triple for Caledonia.   Peyton coast to coast and another triple before King hits from deep in transition.  15-13 Caledonia at 8:15.  Peyton with the pullup at 5:10 before going to the bench with his 2nd at the 4:20 mark.  21-19 SPA leading.  Kyle Sorenson came off the bench for the Warriors in this one.  His late inside out assist for King's 3rd 3 of the half gives Caledonia a 27-24 halftime lead.

Inside out against for King's 4th bomb.  Then its the Spartans off on an 11-4 run with Peyton living at the foul line.  He goes 5-9 from the stripe and Kent Hanson ends the run with a pretty cut down the middle for a layup.  35-34 SPA regains the lead just inside of 12 to play.  Osman scores from the short corner and makes a free throw after an offensive board.  40-38 SPA with 8:44 left.  SPA with the 7-1 advantage in fouls.  Then a turnover and a blocked shot lead to a Colton Lampert layup and free throw.  King sets a backscreen for a lob and pops out for his 5th 3 of the night..  Then Sorenson misses inside, gets the miss back and kicks out to King for his 6th bomb of the night.  Backbreaker!  47-40 Caledonia with 4:29 left.  After an SPA free throw, Sorenson drives for 2 to push the lead to 49-41 with 3:15 left.  Lampert with an easy layup off the SLOB.  Caledonia makes 8-9 FTs to seal it.  Caledonia wins 58-51.

Owen King 2 big 3s in the late 11-1 run to win it and he had 2 of the late free throws.  He finishes with 20 points and 6 3s.  Another off night for Kyle Sorenson but he ends with a double double of 10 and 10.  Colton Lampart another quality performance of 10 points.  Dalante Peyton leads St. Paul Academy with 21 points but nothing in the last 9:35.   Kent Hanson also with a double double of 12 and 10 but he also struggled.  SPA really struggling to find offense outside of Peyton/Hanson.  Kent Hanson is in and out of the lineup and seems to not be right at the moment.  They need to figure it out quick as a Tuesday trip to Minnehaha lurks.  Caledonia continues to be bothered by teams with size.

Game 2: Blake vs Waseca
Its a hot start for Blake with freshman sniper Jack Moe going for a pair of 3s.  13-6 Blake at 12:45.  Then its Moe off the inbounds for 3 more.  16-10 Bears at 10:25.  Waseca had taken a timeout to get chewed out and come to life.  It took a couple possessions but it finally happened.  The Bluejays go on a 21-3 run over the next 8 minutes as Blake makes 1 3 during that stretch.  Waseca star Nick Dufault goes for 12 points with a couple of transition 3s during that run.  33-24 Waseca at half.  Blake with 6 3s to keep it close.

Shane Streich gets off to a hot 2nd half start for Waseca.  He knocks down a jumper off the high screen, converts a turnover and then 2 uncontested drives to the rack for easy hoops.  Despite all that, after a couple of Charlie Levitt jumpers, Waseca's lead is only 43-31 with 11:23 to go.  But the rest of the game is all Waseca.  They end the game on a 24-4 run and run away and hide.  Waseca wins 67-35.  Jack Moe and Charlie Levitt lead Blake with 9 points each.  Nick Dufault with 18 and a mitt full of rebounds to go with it to lead Waseca.

2015 Midwest Players Classic Thoughts

Prologue
It the 5th annual Midwest Players Classic in La Crosse, WI.  Always great to return to the Old Kingdom and support a hometown event.  The day highlighted by a matchup of teams ranked #1 and a pair of high profile forwards matching up.  The Emperor joins me for the 2 of the 3 games.  His wisdom keeps the beverage counter at only 1 bottle of Pepsi.

Number of Teams I've Seen: 122 (44 courts)

Beverage Consumption Counter: 972.9 ounces (59 days, 85 games, 2 scrimmages added on)
  • Pepsi: 536 ounces
  • Coke: 132 ounces
  • Dr. Pepper: 36 ounces
  • Sprite: 76 ounces
  • Sierra Mist: 12 ounces
  • Barq's Root Beer: 20 ounces
  • A&W Root Beer: 24 ounces
  • Red Powerade: 60 ounces
  • Red Gatorade: 60 ounces
  • Water: 500 ml
Hot Dog Counter: 11

Song of the Day
Maroon 5 - Won't go home without you

I missed the opening game thanks to travel battles with ice but not much was missed as #7AA St Croix Lutheran steamrolled La Crosse Aquinas 58-21.  The Crusaders are seriously underranked at #7.

Game 2: #8AAAA East Ridge vs West Salem (WI)
The Emperor and I had a chance to see West Salem over the holidays.  They gave up 41 to a post player in that game and East Ridge has size and athletes.  Major problem brewing.  East Ridge with a very good strategy of taking Seth Green and having him faceguard Mankato commit Bailey Williams.  West Salem would score the 1st 4 points of the game and it was all East Ridge after that.  Freddie Gillespie and Kyle Junker would towers inside against the West Salem guards at the rim.  That led to a bunch of easy East Ridge buckets.  After those 1st 4 points, East Ridge would go on a 19-2 run that went into the 2nd quarter  Sid Tomes would scoop for 2 and a steal for 2 more to extend the run to 34-9.  Green would score the 1st 6 of the 2nd half.  Tomes with a couple of nice assists out of the post to Bobby Remke for layups.  The rout is on.  East Ridge rolls 66-33.  They hold Bailey Williams to 1 halfcourt field goal and 9 points.  His only other field goal was a steal.  Bobby Remke and Seth Green with 16 each.  Sid Tomes with a well-rounded game of 14.

Game 3: #1AA Caledonia vs #1AAA Waverly-Shell Rock (IA)
This matchup of top ranked teams did not disappoint.  15 all after 1 quarter.  WSR's leading scorer Jake Velky would pick up his 3rd foul at the 4:34 mark of the 2nd quarter and have to sit.  Caledonia would finish the half on an 8-0 run to take a 33-25 halftime lead.  Post Austin Phyfe is one of the top sophomores in Iowa.  He had a quiet 1st half.   But he would be the catalyst behind a 17-4 WSR run that would give them control.  WSR up 54-48 late before the fireworks started.  Caledonia makes 1 free throw, then misses the 2nd but gets it back for 3 and the lead is 2.  Then a pass to the nail goes right through the legs of the offensive player.  The turnover is converted by Kyle Sorenson into a post hoop.  54 all 36.8 left.  WSR holds and takes a pair of timeouts.  Then its a left wing iso for Velky and cold as ice he drills the step back 3 with 0.4 left to win it.  Waverly-Shell Rock wins 57-54.   Velky 16 points and big in crunch time.  Great footwork from the lefty post Phyfe on his way to 14 points.  Bemidji State commit Kyle Sorenson 13 points, frosh Owen King 8 for Caledonia (cold shooting).  Colton Lampert and Justin Burg with great role performances combining for 18.  They get a state tourney rematch with St. Paul Academy Monday night at Roosevelt.

Game 4: Rochester John Marshall vs #6 D2 Rice Lake (WI)
The highlight here was new Minnesota commit Michael Hurt taking on Marquette signee Henry Ellenson.  The game itself didn't live up to the hype.  Rochester John Marshall turned the ball over all day.  That turned into a 15-9 Rice Lake lead after 1 quarter and then a 16-2 run to open the 2nd quarter.  Rice Lake by 16 at half, 23 after 3.  They win 62-51 and it wasn't that close.  The Hurt brothers don't have as much help as I thought they did.  Rice Lake was hurt by guard play in their 2 metro losses, JM didn't have that.  Henry Ellenson didn't put up the ridiculous numbers we saw in 2 metro trips but still ended up with 25 and 4 blocks.  He had a sequence where he swatted both Hurt brothers on the same possession.  Michael Hurt finished with 21 and 8 with 5 of that bevy of Rockets turnovers.  Most of that offensive production was in the 4th quarter after the game was out of hand.  Matthew Hurt is already a nightmare 3 man and I like his ceiling much more than Michael's.  Gopher fans, I think you'll see a guy similar to Joey King.  Both very skilled but fair questions about their athleticism at the highest level.  Great for Minnesota to keep an instate kid home. In terms of basketball fit with coach Pitino, I think the jury is out on that one.

I skipped the 2 games of my alma mater (shameful) to take in the Minot State at Winona State game.  Many players in that game that I saw on the AAU circuit.  Riley Bambenek big down the stretch for Winona State to finally put the game away.  Isaiah Gray from those top Benilde-St. Margaret's teams with a very solid career for the Warriors.  St. Cloud Tech's Thomas Korf has turned into a knockdown shooter for Minot State.