Week 2 of the MBA Fall League

Action from week 2 of the MBA fall league at Minnehaha Academy.

Session 1 Scores: NYA def Blake 74-29, Maple Grove JV def North Branch JV 35-20 and Edison def Dunwoody Academy 56-28.

Session 2 Scores: Blake def North Branch JV 44-43, Maple Grove JV def NYA 44-37 and Maple Grove blew out Edison 63-35 in an ugly game.

Session 3: A couple of real good ones here to start my day. Armstrong vs Sibley in the one of the biggest games of the league in my featured game. Regular season rosters mostly intact for this game which adds to the excitement. The game is even early as Damarius Cruz goes over Jake Kreuser for an early bucket to pull Armstrong within 11-9 4 minutes into the action. Sibley uses 5 Mike Bruesewitz points and alley-oop to Chris Halvorsen to lead 27-18. 37-28 Sibley at the break behind 16 points and 5 rebounds from Bruesewitz.

Sibley opens the 2nd half on a 10-2 run over the 1st 3:50 of the 2nd half to blow the game open 47-30 with 16:10 to play. Maurice Hernandez with a couple of buckets in that run. They go on to win 68-55. Bruesewitz finishes with 25 and 11, Hernandez with 21 for Sibley. Damarius Cruz with 21 for Armstrong. Interesting to see Halvorsen spend some time guarding Cruz in this game. Armstrong with no answer for the Sibley size.

In other session 3 action, Dunwoody Academy def NYA 47-35. In the other game, Minnehaha got 7 straight points in the last 2 minutes to go from 1 down to 6 up on TNL. Taylor Sparkman with the 1st 5 of those points to lead the Redhawks to the 76-70 win.

Session 4: Coon Rapids vs St. Peter. Ben Baker with a quick start for Coon Rapids with 10 of the first 13 Cardinal points. They lead 25-18 at the break. They start the 2nd half on a 15-4 spurt over the first 12 minutes of the 2nd half to break the game open. Coon Rapids wins 48-27. Baker with 20 points and 7 rebounds.

In other session 4 action, Hoops Training def Park Center 44-36. Maple Grove def St. Paul Central 52-44.

Session 5: Minnehaha vs Sibley in another premier league matchup. Parker Hines gets a steal and layup to give Minnehaha an early 10-6 lead. Sibley then goes on a 13-0 run over the next 8 minutes to take control. Chris Halvorsen with a nice drive and dunk within that run. A Mike Rostampour putback at the buzzer gives Sibley a 33-23 lead at the break. Nice balance on both sides as Rostampour and Bruesewitz each have 8 and Hernandez with 7 for Sibley. Greg Meyer, David Burnham and Hines all with 5 for Minnehaha.

Hernandez comes out and hits 2 quick threes and Halvorsen gets a dunk off of the nice Sibley inbounds package to push the lead to 17. Hernandez finishes the spurt with a 3 point play to make it 54-30 with 11 minutes to play. Taylor Sparkman with 8 late points for Minnehaha to try and make it interesting but the game is long over. Sibley wins 64-51. Mike Rostampour with 16 and 10. Hernandez with 18 for Sibley. Taylor Sparkman with 12 points all in the 2nd half. Greg Meyer also with 12 for Minnehaha. Sparkman was playing center and often guarded by Jake Kreuser. I thought Sparkman could exploit Kreuser by stepping outside, but that didn't happen until late in the game after the outcome was already determined.

In other session 5 action, Coon Rapids blew out Mankato 78-41. TNL blew out Mpls Demons 53-35.

Session 6: Hoops Training vs Armstrong. Armstrong ice cold early and in a major shock its 25-8 Hoops Training with 7:45 left in the 1st half. Then Damarius Cruz blows the roof off as he goes down the lane with a thunderous 1 handed dunk to put some life back in the Falcons. 29-15 Hoops Training with 5 minutes left in the half after the dunk. 33-21 Hoops Training at the break. Cruz the only offense for the Falcons as he had 15 points.

Trevor Gruis (Ellsworth) gets a couple of buckets for Hoops Training to keep the lead at 12, 39-27 after 3 minutes of the 2nd half. Its a 10 point lead with 13 minutes to play before Armstrong comes to life. Marquel Curtis with back to back blocks on the same possession leads to an Andy Seidlitz triple. Cruz finds Seidlitz for a layup and then gets another dunk plus a layin and Armstrong is all the way back to lead 52-49. That concluded a 19-6 Armstrong run over an 8 minute stretch. Gruis doing it all for Hoops Training down the stretch. He gets 2 buckets and then after an Armstrong turnover, gets the assist to give them the lead back 55-54. After a Curtis miss, Gruis dunks with 31 seconds left to give Hoops Training a 57-54 lead. Cruz with a clutch triple from straight away to tie it with 18 seconds left. Gruis doesn't touch it on the last possession and we go to overtime. Ted Vogt with an early bucket and Curtis with a free throw for the final 60-57 margin as Hoops Training doesn't score in the 2 minute OT. Cruz with at least 24 for the Falcons in the win.

Park Center def St. Paul Central 55-53 in the other game. PC missed a FT to give Central a shot at the buzzer to win it, but the 3 was off.

Session 7: Sibley vs Mpls Demons. A rout all the way. The Demons with only 3 1st half field goals. Sibley leads 27-11 at the break. More ugliness in the 2nd half as the Demons needs 7 minutes to get their 1st field goal of the half. So that's 4 field goals in 27 minutes. Yikes, nice job by Sibley on the defensive end. 45-21 Sibley wins. Bruesewitz with 12 and Halvorsen 11 for Sibley.

St. Peter def Mankato 60-47 in the other game.

Random thoughts from the days action:
  • You can really tell the teams that use this for the regular season and those who don't. The dead giveaway is the teams that are running all of their regular season stuff (Armstrong, Sibley) and those who are just running around (Edison, Mpls Demons). Its one thing to build the system for the regular season. Its entirely another to build bad habits that have to be broken once the regular season comes along.
  • This was my 1st chance to see Sibley's Mike Rostampour play. He didn't play varsity last year, but he's grown 5 inches in the last year and he's got the same motor that Mike Bruesewitz has. He was very active on the glass and around the basket all day. He'll be fun to watch this season.
  • Chris Halvorsen's cold shooting continues to surprise me. He didn't shoot well when I saw him at the Twin Cities Summer Classic and today he was 5-16 shooting free throws. I'm not sure I saw him hit an outside shot all day.
  • Sibley's biggest question this year in my mind will be point guard play. They really struggled with that today. Granted they had a kid missing there, but they used Maurice Hernandez and Mike Bruesewitz (especially vs pressure) to do some of the ball handling. Shows the skills that Bruesewitz has and how he'll be a nice fit for Bo Ryan. But it also shows that this is an area that the Warriors will continue to look at.

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