2021 Comets Shootout Review

Great to have the Comets Shootout return after being called off due to COVID last year.  This was my 1st tourney seeing COVID protocols in place in person.  The back to back scheduling is different but there's something to be said for it.  Get in, get out and be done.  While we didn't have the full usual crowd of fans and college coaches, there was enough there to have a reasonable game time feel.  Regardless, great to be back in the gym.  With many metro teams only getting 1 practice in before the tourney due to the quick turnaround and early week curfews, we'll definitely see much different basketball from these teams later in the season.  But that's also the great equalizer of this tournament.  

Show Me (but not in Missouri):  Good runs by WOTN Bertsch and Crossfire Barger to the 16U Blue semifinals.  Liked what I saw from 16u ECI Prospects freshman Isaiah Schafer (more that on later), Isaac Nyakundi (Duluth East) of Starks Elite and JT Thornton (Lakeville North) of WOTN.  Jasper Hedin (Winona), Brandon Melchoir (Elk River), and Hakeem Ford (Mpls SW) caught my eye in the 17s.

Team that Most Surprised Me:  Real Phenom-Nick 17s lost their opener to Heat MacDonald but then ran the table with wins over Comets Belka, WI Swing Bredesen and Heat Grow to finish 3-1 and win the consolation side of the 17U Blue bracket.  Productive weekend for Davion Evans (Robbinsdale Cooper).

Best Finish of the Weekend: 17U Team GetShook vs WI Swing Bredesen.  In the Saturday opener, GetShook was down 3 with the ball with under 30 seconds to go.  Swing had 3 fouls to give and gave 1 of them.  But they couldn't give another.  Donald Ferguson (Osseo) hit a tough 3 to tie and then after Swing went too quick at the end we had a scramble with 5 seconds left.  GetShook picks up and throws it ahead for a Keyon Broussard (Roseville) layup to beat the buzzer and a 42-40 win.

Clap Along (if you feel like like happiness is the truth): One thing that really stuck out in 17s was the lack of size.  Lots of bigger wing types but in terms of real post guys, they're hard to find.  That was a key edge for Select Ohnstad having Pharrell Payne (Park of Cottage Grove) in the middle.  His impact was definitely felt this weekend and as a breakout guy during the regular season, the progression will be fun to watch.  Particularly since he's playing for Mitch Ohnstad who's known for his work with bigs.

Jump Off My Page: I saw only 1 15u game all weekend and that was the 15U blue championship.  North Dakota's top ranked 2024 Jeremiah Sem highlighted that game. H was the most explosive player I saw all weekend, regardless of age level.  Athletically he was at another level than anybody he played.  The game was a defensive struggle but Sem sealed it with a 3 point play and dunk in the last minute to give ECI Prospects the 39-32 championship over Team GetShook.  That ECI roster has 3 of the top 4 ranked freshman in North Dakota and the 4th plays up on their 16s (and played well).  Looking forward to see that group in the coming years with 2 good guards and 2 solid bigs. 

17U Blue Bracket Results
4-0 - Select Ohnstad (1st)
3-1 - Fury Wilde (2nd), Heat MacDonald (3rd), Comets Elite (5th), Real Phenom (9th) 
2-2 - WOTN Johnson (4th), Team GetShook (6th), MN Rise (7th), Heat Grow (10th), WI Swing Bredesen (11th), MN Lightning Ellerbusch (13th)
1-3 - Team 1848 (8th), ECI Prospects (12th), Fury Narum (14th), Comets Belka (15th)
0-4 Magic Premier (16th)

16U Blue Bracket Results
4-0 - Fury Antl (1st)
3-1 - Playmakers Showcase Wausau (2nd), WOTN Bertsch (3rd), WI Swing Bredesen (5th), Team 1848 (9th)
2-2 - Crossfire Barger (4th), Heat Pratt (6th), ECI Prospects (7th), Starks Elite (10th), Hall of Fame (11th), MN Lightning Ellerbusch (13th)
1-3 - MN Rise (8th), Fury Hayes (12th), Magic Premier (14th), Comets Elite (15th)
0-4 - Real Phenom (16th) 

15U Blue Bracket Results
4-0 - ECI Prospects (1st)
3-1 - Team GetShook (2nd), Fury Zurn (3rd), Playmakers Showcase (5th), Heat Bohrer (9th)
2-2 - Team 1848 (4th), MN Rise (6th), Crossfire Ronning (7th), Heat PB&J (10th), WI Swing Bredesen (11th), MN Rush (13th)
1-3 - MN Lightning Lyga (8th), MN Select Altenhofen (12th), WOTN Mitchell (14th), Magic Premier (15th)
0-4 - Comets Elite (16th)

16U White Bracket: MN Bounce 4-0 (1st) for the Maple Grove based group who got to play all 4 of their games at Whitney.  Great balance from that crew in the championship game with 9 of the 10 guys scoring at least 2 buckets and nobody in double figures.  Fun team to watch play.

2021 State Tourney Quick Hits

Some quick observations from the 2021 State Tournament

Class A
It was a wacky class A tourney with the top seeds going out immediately in the quarters.  Junior forward Matt Thompson of Hancock was a big part of that in the north half of the bracket.  A name that definitely caught the attention of coaches.  On the other side of the bracket, Ethan Slaathaug put Hayfield on his back with a monster tournament.  He graduates but Hayfield returns a ton behind him.  Expect the Vikings to make another big run next season..  

Class AA
How about Caledonia playing without their star Eli King and beating #2 Minneapolis North in the semis and giving #1 Waseca all they wanted before Ryan Dufault's game winner with 2.3 seconds left in the championship.  Not to mention getting thru a very tough section 1AA.  Athletics remain as strong as ever for the Warriors.  Don't expect them to drop too far.  

After making the AAA championship game in 2019, Waseca came in #1 this season and lived up to all the billing.  Despite only 13 combined points from Andrew Morgan and Kyreese Willingham and 6-30 total 3 point shooting in the championship game, the Bluejays still found a way to win the game of the day.

Class AAA
No shock here that Minnehaha took home their 4th straight title, 1st in AAA.  Byron gave them a fight in the quarters before the Redhawks cruised thru the semis and championship game.  What a run with 2 of the top players in Minnesota history during that stretch.  While Minnehaha for the 1st time in forever won't be a prohibitive favorite to win a state title next season, the cupboard isn't bare either.  With Mercy Miller, Prince Aligbe, Donovan Smith and Chase Carter all returning, the Redhawks will still be very dangerous.

Class AAAA
Tre Holloman putting a whole new roster on his back and taking them to the title game was a sight to see.  I saw them struggle in game 1 of the year vs Mounds View but the nice adjustments to using Holloman more in the low post and pinch post along with a slower defensive minded style worked like a charm.  That defense really carried them later in the season.  The Raiders will be in a similar spot next season, hard to bet against them.

Wayzata will have just about everybody back from a roster that clicked this season after struggling last year.  They'll be the first pick to win it all again next season.  We often talk about all the guard play and shooting the Trojans seem to have.  That remains true but defensively, they really turned it up.  After a halftime adjustment vs Duluth East in the quarters, Wayzata's defense stonewalled teams and that put them over the top.

Duluth East Wayzata 2021 State AAAA Qtrs Thoughts

Its state tourney time as 15 of the 16 boys quarterfinals are being played today.  While I'll be on the road later to collect my NCAA tourney pool bragging rights from The Crown Prince, we get 1 AAAA quarterfinal going with the early start.  Its the middle game from the north.  2 seed Wayzata taking on 3 seed Duluth East. This game was actually scheduled in the regular season less than 3 weeks ago but was cancelled so some redemption there.  A couple of matchups to watch with Wayzata's Cam Heide and East's Mattie Thompson on the wing.  The big bodies Noah Paulson (East) and Carter Bjerke (Wayzata) is the other matchup to watch.

Game Time
Even start to the game early.  Giovani Saldivar 2 early triples for Duluth East.  14-11 Greyhounds on top.  Wayzata counters with an 8-0 run.  Kody Williams cashing in a turnover for a triple to end that.  19-14 Wayzata takes the lead.  Paulson then heats up inside.  He scores 3 straight buckets.  Mattie Thompson for 3 and 2 Paulson free throws.  16-2 Duluth East run for a 30-21 lead at the 6:49 mark.  Ryan Harvey productive minutes off the Wayzata bench to end the half.  He scores 7 points to keep Wayzata close.  Paulson beats the halftime buzzer for a 42-36 Duluth East halftime lead.

The 2nd half is all Wayzata.  Trojans come out of the break with an 18-2 run to take control.  It only takes 9 Wayzata possessions to pull that off.  5 Duluth East turnovers in 8 trips.  Eddie Beeninga big 2nd half.  He takes a steal for a 3 point play and adds a trey.  Cam Heide a 3 point play and a nice turnaround in the lane.  Duluth East tries to hang around.  Thompson backdoor for 2 to keep the Greyhounds within 56-51.  Beeninga too much to handle.  He drives for 2 more with 6 minutes left and the lead is back to 12.  He'll add another late bucket and 5 FTs.  No real threat the rest of the way. Wayzata wins 78-69.

Post Game
Too much 2nd half defense from Wayzata in this one.   Duluth East turns it over 12 times in the 2nd half, 19 times overall.  14 of those for Wayzata steals.  After 14 points in the 1st half, the defense holds big man Noah Paulson to just 1 free throw in the 2nd half.  Great ball pressure in the 2nd half a major factor there.  Eddie Beeninga scores 17 of his 26 points in the 2nd half.  Camden Heide scores 15, Carter Bjerke 14, Kody Williams 10 for Wayzata.  Heide came down awkwardly after a tip dunk midway thru the 2nd half.  He came back quickly but then left the game early.  Noah Paulson leads Duluth East with 15 points.  Zaa Buffalo with 13, Mattie Thompson with 11 for the Greyhounds.

Four Factors

FACTORWayzataDuluth East
Effective FG %58.5%
Offensive Rebound %21.9%
Free Throw Rate41.5%
Turnover %13.2%

Points Per Possession1.15

Wayzata expands a minor free throw edge to a big one with late free throws to close the game out.  Both teams very solid shooting days.  It wasn't only the Duluth East turnovers with the pressure defense.  Wayzata also with a big edge in deflections.

The Real 2021 AAA State Championships

I likely end my in person viewing for the abbreviated 2021 season with a pair of class AAA section finals.  These games featured the top 4 teams in the last state rankings.  A really fun pair of games so let's get to it.

Thursday 3AAA Final: #4AAA Richfield 93 #2AAA South St. Paul 90
Charlie Murphy leading the officiating crew in this one.  Defense, optional.  With the size advantage, Richfield goes inside early and works out of the high post looking low on many possessions.  That gets a bit negated when Isaiah Casey-Hammond has to sit at the 4:56 mark with his 3rd foul.  SSP finishes the half on a 13-4 run thanks to 4 Alonzo Dodd buckets.  That breaks open an even game and gives SSP a 43-33 halftime lead.  Dodd with 18 in the half.

But we're just getting started.  The SSP gets to 13 but won't stay there.  Lamar Grayson won't let Richfield lose.  Free throw and a bucket for him.  Mitchell January posts for 2 FTs and converts a turnover after 2 more Grayson hoops.  51 all with 12:15 to play, Game On!.  Grayson and Dodd going back and forth.  Grayson 3 pt play and a bucket countered by a Dodd bucket and triple.  Tied at 60 with 10 minutes left.  The Richfield crowd more into it than the Packers crowd but the intensity goes up a couple notches for the home stretch.

Hammond fouls out at 8:03.  January appears to foul out on a charge at 7:04.  Ref totally botches his signals.  Even reports it as a charge to the table.  But they really mean its a block on the bang bang play and he stays in.  Big break for Richfield who isn't very deep.  Some would say the ball doesn't lie as January misses the front end of the bonus.  Ryan Miles with 2 buckets including one of those high low type dropoffs.  Spartans up 73-68 with 5:30 left.  Dodd with a pretty spin to cut the margin to 2.  Grayson 2 buckets, January off the glass for 2 more.  Richfield with a block on 1 end and Grayson converts it on the other.  83-74 Richfield with 2:45 left.  Timeout SSP and that appears to be the critical run.

But wait there's more.  SSP misses a  3, 1 chance, 2 chances, Dodd puts back the 3rd chance and is fouled.  He misses that FT, Richfield gets the board and gives it right back.  Pass finds Dodd for a layup.  Richfield another turnover on their possession.  Dodd pushes it back the other way and finds Romantay Harmon for a left corner 3.  BANG!  Just like that SSP is back within 83-81 with 2:05 left.  Grayson 1 FT and Dodd with the nice scoop on the other end.  84-83 Richfield with 1:36 left.

January right back for Richfield and he goes to the rack for a 3 point play.  Jump ball but it stays with SSP with 1:12 left.  They then miss a good look at a 3.  Richfield holds and SSP has to foul.  They make 1 FT.  Devin Newsome counters with a 3 for SSP with 26 seconds left.  88-86 Spartans lead.  Grayson calmly makes 2 FTs before Dodd gets a quick 2.  Richfield 1-2 FTs with 10.9 left.   Spartans now up 3.

Dodd takes the inbounds.  Gets a high ball screen going to his right at the top of the key.  Rejects it and gets fouled on a 3 with 6.1 seconds left.  Oh my!  He makes the 1st, misses the 2nd and makes the 3rd.  SSP has to foul again and its Grayson making 2 more FTs with 5 seconds left.  SSP timeout between those freebies doesn't ice him at all.  SSP goes immediately.  They make a pass out of bounds but the clock starts on it.  An open look at a 3 is therefore rushed and doesn't get off in time anyway.  Richfield wins an absolute thriller.  The 2nd half was a full game by itself (60-47 scoring).  Lamar Grayson goes for 28 of his 37 in the 2nd half.  I feel for the Mr Basketball Committee and how they have to pick a top 5.  Somebody really worthy is going to get left out.  Grayson making a huge case for why it shouldn't be him.  He matched Alonzo Dodd bucket for bucket.  Dodd with 21 of his 39 in the 2nd half.  Devin Newsome adds 21 for SSP.  Ryan Miles and Mitchell January both with 17 for Richfield.  Richfield only takes 5 3s all game and doesn't make any.  SSP was 10-23 from deep.  Richfield shoots 25-40 at the charity stripe compared to 12-24 for SSP.

Four Factors

FACTORSouth St. Paul
Effective FG %56.5%
Offensive Rebound %44.7%
Free Throw Rate34.8%
Turnover %17.5%

Points Per Possession1.13

Friday 4AAA Final: #1AAA Minnehaha 73 #3AAA Totino-Grace 60
This is one of the most anticipated games of the season.  Interesting lineup alteration by Nick Carroll bring star soph Taison Chatman off the bench.  2 early stories here.  Really sloppy play by Minnehaha and hot TG shooting.  They make 6 of their 1st 9 3s.  Devin Burger with 4 of them.  Minnehaha turns it over 13 times in the 1st 23 trips, mostly unforced.  DJ Akpati with a 3 to end an 11-2 TG run.  Eagles up 28-13 at the 5:40 mark.  Chet Holmgren with the only Minnehaha field goals to that point.  Minnehaha stops turning it over and they get points on 11 of the last 13 trips of the half.  They also ratchet up the defense holding TG to 1 FG in the final 12 trips.  20-4 Minnehaha run to end the half.  Redhawks up 33-32 at the break.

TG 3 quick scores to start the 2nd half and reclaim the lead 39-35.  Holmgren a steal for 2, a free throw, a bucket and 2 more freebies.  A Carter Weierke 3 is sandwiched in there.  45-44 TG.  Isaiah Davis for 3 and Minnehaha takes the lead 47-45.  Burger another bomb, CJ O'Hara converts a turnover, Chatman converts a turnover into a 3.  TG up 53-47 with 8:50 left.  Holmgren with a tip dunk to cut the margin to 1 before another Burger triple from up top.  56-52 TG with 6:38 left as they take time.  Hercy Miller for 3 and then throw it up to Holmgren and let him go get it.  Demarion Watson stops that momentum with a left wing triple  59-57 TG with about 5 minutes left.

But TG won't get another field goal.  Hercy Miller drive for 2 and a steal for 2 more.  Another TG turnover becomes a Prince Aligbe dunk.  Holmgren to a cutting Mercy Miller for 2 and he'll dunk the next possession.  TG 4 turnovers in 5 possessions.  The rest is fouls and free throws.  Minnehaha ends the game on a 16-1 run over the last 5 min.  1 point for TG in their last 13 trips, very similar to the end of the first half.  Chet Holmgren his usual big game with 24 points.  Some Coke drinking writer had him for 16 rebs, 7 ast and 3 blk as well.  Mercy Miller 19 points and new Tennessee State commit Hercy Miller with 16 points.  Devin Burger with 6 of Totino-Grace's 14 3s in the game.  He leads the Eagles with 21 points.  Taison Chatman adds 14 points

Four Factors
Effective FG %58.5%
Offensive Rebound %45.2%
Free Throw Rate90.2%
Turnover %29.6%

Points Per Possession1.03

As to the AAA state tourney, here are my predictions for the seeding.  These winners should end up the top 2 seeds in the south portion of the AAA bracket.  I would expect Minnehaha to take on Byron (Holmgren vs Ahjany Lee, thank you).  That leaves Richfield with Mankato West.  In the top half. De La Salle likely gets the top seed and Monticello with a very entertaining outstate matchup of Hibbing vs Alexandria as the other game. 

Raiding the 4AAAA semis

After almost 2 months of nothing but 94 straight online games (93 local plus the Nebraska big school championship) , I'm back in the gym for a 4AAAA semifinal rubber match between East Ridge and host Cretin-Derham Hall.  The teams split the regular season with Tre Holloman not playing during the CDH loss at East Ridge.  KB and the Sunshine Band on the whistle.  Sadly Suel Forrester is no longer on the Public Address and none of the great beef hot dog concessions.

Game Time
Tre Holloman assist for a 3 and a take of his own for 2 on the 1st 2 Raiders possessions.  5-0  CDH and East Ridge has only had the ball once.  East Ridge scores 3 straight buckets including 2 from Kendall Blue for a 6-5 lead.  But their offense isn't lighting it up either.  Alex Mattes with a bucket and he'll trade 3s with Marselio Mendez for a 15-13 Raptors lead.  Ben North with 3 of 4 FTs in that stretch.  CDH finally breaks out of a 2 for 16 shooting stretch by scoring on 9 of their last 11 trips of the half.  Holloman to Mendez for another 3, an assist to Peter Howard for a layup.  Then he finds Jack Tauer who beats the buzzer (or does he) from the top of the key.  DANG IT CHLOE!  30-21 Cretin-Derham Hall at the break. 

Holloman adding scoring to his assists in the 2nd half.  He goes in the post for 2.  Then a steal for a dunk and he'll add a left baseline jumper being left alone.  Coach Josh Peltier not happy with his Raptors squad.  Holloman adds a triple and the halftime lead is now doubled.  43-25 CDH with 13:07 left.  Another Holloman steal for a dunk keeps the lead at 47-29.  East Ridge unable to get stops as that's CDH points on 17 out of 21 possessions across halftime.  Kendall Blue with a pair of hoops.  Raptors cut the margin to 51-40 with 9:20 left on a Ben North drive.

But East Ridge won't threaten any more than that.  Holloman in the post for 2 free throws.  Jack Plum with a steal for a dunk.  Holloman strips Blue for another bucket and goes coast to coast to beat the press for 2 more. 65-49 CDH with 4 minutes left.  East Ridge started giving fouls with 6 minutes left and tried to strategically foul guys.  That didn't get them any closer.  Cretin-Derham Hall advances 76-61 to play at top seed Woodbury in the section 4AAAA finals.  Woodbury won 2 close meetings in the regular season.

Post Game
East Ridge finishes a disappointing season at 12-7.  Kendall Blue leads the Raptors with 17 points.  He had Tre Holloman hounding him much of the night.  Ben North and Alex Mattes solid nights from the guard spots.  Both finish with 13 points.  North had the tough task of guarding Holloman for much of the night as well.  East Ridge ran 1 high low all night which was shocking to me.  Not sure if Drew Adams was even looked at for a post touch.  He had 8 points and 7 of them very late.  Defensively do you try the bigger Blue on Holloman with the amount that CDH likes to use Holloman in the post?

Tre Holloman leads Cretin-Derham Hall with 28 points and 11 assists for almost that many.  Steals, posting, distributing and he even knocked down a couple jumpers.  They use him a ton in the post and pinch post and have gotten away from just high ball screens that teams will just go under like Mounds View did at the start of the season.  Very nice adjustment by the CDH staff.  The passing made the role guys look great.  Daniel Montalbano 15 points, Marselio Mendez 13 points coming up big in secondary spots.  Mendez with a couple of big triples in the 1st half.  Jack Plum adds 10.

Four Factors

FACTORCretin-Derham Hall
East Ridge
Effective FG %52.4%
Offensive Rebound %48.7%
Free Throw Rate25.8%
Turnover %13.9%

Points Per Possession1.17

Most surprising number here for me is 17 offensive rebounds for CDH, 10 of them in the 1st half.  That's a number that East Ridge should win, if not dominate, in this game.  East Ridge couldn't get stops either.  After a 4-18 start, CDH shoots 26-44 the rest of the way to break open a close game.  They win EFG% which means Czar's Law is now 102-24 (81%) on the season.  That shooting was mostly from 2 as well.  Raiders only 5-14 from 3.  East Ridge still managed to win the FT battle despite giving fouls and putting CDH on the line for a large chunk of the last 6 minutes.  They make 18 to CDH's 16 attempts.  While CDH missed the 1st 2 front ends, they made 7 of the next 8.  Of 8 live ball turnovers for East Ridge, 5 of them became immediate buckets which is a killer.

A COVID Super Saturday

This playoff Saturday is always known for being jam packed with semifinal double-headers (and once upon a time a St. Cloud triple-header).  Everything being home site this season takes that away.  So we turn it into NCAA type viewing with games going on all day at many different locations.  2 games fully including below after taking in the 5AAAA and 7AAAA 2 seeds moving on.  Anoka and Centennial hung around until the final few minutes until Duluth East and Mounds View ultimately won by double figures.

5AAAA Quarterfinal: (5) Osseo 63 (4) Spring Lake Park 46

One of the AAU All-Stars on the whistle for this one.  This crew was kept busy.  40 total free throw attempts and 4 players fouling out.  Spring Lake Park with no answer for the Osseo 2-3 zone.  Spring Lake Park goes a stretch of 21 trips with only 3 field goals.  While the EFG was dreadful, it wasn't because they settled for 3s against the zone. Only 12 3 pt attempts for Spring Lake Park in 45 total shots.  I had the Panthers 9-25 on paint attempts.  Gotta convert inside.  Josh Ola-Joseph with a nice stretch for Osseo as they opened the lead.  Fitzgerald Wreh and Kaleb Skelly both foul out with 5-6 minutes left and that kills any final chance that Spring Lake Park had.  Osseo gets 4 in double figures.  Josh Ola-Joseph leads with 15.  Benard Omooria with 14, Blessed Barhayiga cleaning up inside with 14. Tyriece Waits adds 10.  The Osseo offense very dribble heavy though.  Not the kind of offense we've seen from them in years past.  Trey Johnston hits the only 3 triples for Spring Lake Park against that zone.  He leads the Panthers with 13 points.  Fitzgerald Wreh adds 12.

 Four Factors

FACTORSpring Lake Park
Effective FG %38.9%
Offensive Rebound %55.3%
Free Throw Rate44.4%
Turnover %29.6%

Points Per Possession0.85

3AAAA Semifinal: (3) Rosemount 59 (2) Lakeville North 49

Teacher vs Mentor in this one as John Oxton takes on Lance Walsten who was an assistant and player for him once upon a time.  Lakeville North playing 1-2-2 zone for most of the 1st half.  Caleb Siwek and Will Blascziek providing the offense for each side in the 1st half.  Siwek 14 of Rosemount's 24 first half points.  Blascziek with 12.  Difference in the half is a couple of Hudson Vaith 3s off the Lakeville North bench.  He spins and scores to beat the halftime buzzer.  28-24 Lakeville North at the half.

Rosemount comes out of the halftime break with an 8-0 run.  Noah Loehr 2 buckets and a hoop in that.  Tied at 34 before Rosemount takes the lead for good.  Siwek with a 3 point play.  Sean Sullivan starts a great 2nd half stretch for him with a triple and bonus free throws.  Its a 10-1 Irish run for a 44-35 lead.  R'Moni Warner for 3 and then a steal for Lakeville North.  Cooper Laufenburger scores on the possession to cut the margin to 44-40 with 6:18 left.

Siwek out of the timeout takes a handoff and buries a top of the key 3.  Laufenburger with a strong finish for a 3 point play. Blascziek with a triple and its back to a 1 possession game with 3:46 left.  Sullivan scores out of the timeout.  Rosemount gets stops from there and makes 8-10 FTs to close it out.  Rosemount's guard play outstanding with Caleb Siwek scoring 25, Sean Sullivan 12 of his 15 in the 2nd half.  Sullivan also doing his usual defensive stopper role as well.  Will Blascziek leads Lakeville North with 18 points, but only 2 second half baskets.  Nobody else in double figures.  Rosemount will host the section final next Thursday against Park of Cottage Grove.  The Wolfpack pulled the upset 55-52 in OT at Eastview.

Four Factors

FACTORLakeville North
Effective FG %45.7%
Offensive Rebound %36.8%
Free Throw Rate31.9%
Turnover %18.2%

Points Per Possession0.89

2021 6AAAA Semis Viewing

The 1st Friday night continues another usual bit of the sections schedule with the 6AAAA semifinals. We're not in Osseo for a doubleheader of these games but CCX Sports has both so something in the world is right.  

Semifinal #1: (1) #2AAAA Wayzata 94 (5) Minneapolis South 50

The Scribe on the whistle for this one.  Close game early.  South within 12-11 on a putback with about 11 minutes left.  Wayzata runs away and hides from there.  They go on a 37-4 run until South scores 6 of the last 7 of the half.  5 triples from Wayzata in that run.  50-21 Trojans at the half and they roll from there.  Wayzata shoots 14-27 from 3 with 9 different players making one.  South on the other hand shoots 1-18 from the 3 for the game.  Wayzata largely getting anything they want on offense against a porous Tigers defense. Trojans shoot 37-60 overall for a sky high 73.3% EFG and 1.42 PPP.  Minneapolis South finishes their season 7-8.  De'Mari Larkins was a bright spot with 15 points.  Jerome Williams adds 12 points.  South returning a sophomore and 4 freshman starters to their lineup as they look to the future.  Wayzata great balance with 5 players in double figures.  Carter Bjerke leads with 16 points and 4 3s.  Camden Heide 15 points, Kody Williams 14 pts.  Ryan Harvey 13 off the bench with 3 triples and Drew Berkland with 11.  This looked like the high-powered execution machines of past Wayzata teams.  Only hole in the stat sheet for the Trojans is 6-14 from the charity stripe.

 Four Factors

Mpls South
Effective FG %73.3%
Offensive Rebound %38.7%
Free Throw Rate23.3%
Turnover %13.6%

Points Per Possession1.42

Semifinal #2: (2) #4AAAA Robbinsdale Cooper 84 (3) Robbinsdale Armstrong 57

This one was over just about when it started.  Armstrong 7 turnovers and 2-13 shooting in their 1st 18 trips.  Davion Evans with a 3 and a 3 point play.  Prince Appiah with 2 putbacks as he was very active inside all night.  25-5 Cooper just over 10 minutes in and this one was never close.  Dylan Inniger couldn't get a look against the Cooper defense.  His 2 buckets were 3s in the final minutes long after the outcome was decided.  Armstrong shoots 3-20 from the 3 point line, 12-31 from the charity stripe and turns it over 20 times.  Cooper won't be happy with their 23 turnovers. 7 of them in a row were in a 9-0 1st half run that allowed Armstrong to get the margin back to 20 after it was 40-11.

Four Factors

Effective FG %54.8%
Offensive Rebound %48.7%
Free Throw Rate33.3%
Turnover %29.9%

Points Per Possession1.09