2009 TNL Super Regional Championships

We start championship day at the 2009 TNL Super Regional with a pair of 16U quarterfinals. La Crosse YMCA vs Old Skool is my featured game. Evan Pederson draws 3 fouls on RJ Dean (Rogers) in the 1st quarter while putting up 9 points, 3 rebounds and 4 steals to dominate the point guard matchup. 20-7 La Crosse after 1 quarter. 32-20 La Crosse at the half as Pederson ends the half with 16 and 4 with the 4 steals. In the 3rd quarter, he has a string of an assist, a 3 and then a steal for 2 to put the game away. 44-25 La Crosse with 5:51 left in the 3rd. The rest is cruise control for a 63-46 victory. Pederson finishes with 23 points , 4 boards and 5 steals. TNL blows out P-Town 70-45 in the other quarterfinal.

All 4 17U quarterfinals in the 2nd session of the day. To the easy stuff 1st. The Redhawks had only 5 guys and were only up 53-48 midway thru the 3rd vs the MN Sizzle before the sizzle fizzled. Redhawks 92-62 to the semis. TC Elite hammered MN Sharks. To the best pair of games of the day. Comets North vs Triple Threat in my featured game. Eric Stark hot early with 8 points to lead the Comets on a 10-0 run. That start pushes the Comets a 21-14 lead after 1 quarter. Stark finishes the 1st half with 16 points for a 38-32 Comets lead.

49-44 Comets as we go to the 4th quarter with the TNL game being a major distraction (more on that game below). Triple Threat lights up the 4th quarter with an 8-0 run to start. With 3:50 left they nail a 3 for a 61-55 lead. Stark with a tough putback at 2:15 to cut the Triple Threat lead to 2 and 2 free throws with 25 seconds left cut the lead to 64-63. Michael Lindsay with 1 of 2 and the Comets have a chance to tie. They get fouled with 11 seconds left but the 2nd free throw is no good. Triple Threat hangs on for a 67-64 win.

Triple Threat gets the winner of TNL vs Team Cannon in the top seed vs 0-3 bottom seed matchup. Interesting group of Cannon Falls, Goodhue and Lake City kids for Team Cannon. Goodhue's Blayne and Ashton Eric (2011) look like Taylor Filipek clones and have similar games. Add in the big body of Lake City's 6'7 Joe Beck and there are some interesting players. They go 2-3 zone for the entire game and TNL is a team that loves to shoot the 3. A Jasper Duberry 3 gives TNL a 24-16 lead to end the 1st quarter. But Team Cannon hangs around and they're only down 43-38 at the half. Team Cannon out to a 55-49 lead with 2:40 left in the 3rd and we have an upset brewing. Duberry with a layup and a triple and TNL is right back on top 56-55. Team Cannon gets the last hoop of the quarter for a 57-56 lead going to the 4th.

Ashton Eric with back to back bombs and holy cow its 69-61 Team Cannon with 4:30 to play. Jay Sewer with a steal for a Devon Knopke layup with 2:07 left and a bucket at 1:40 for a 72-71 TNL lead with 1:40 left. Team Cannon misses with 1:15 left and now they have to come out of the zone. That has trouble written all over it. Knopke 1 of 2 FTs with 49.2 left. Michael Bannitt with 2 FT with 31.6 left to tie the game at 73 and back to the zone for Team Cannon. After a timeout with 8.3 left, TNL turns it over and Team Cannon gets tripped right before the horn but no call and we have overtime.

Ashton Eric and Jasper Duberry trade triples in the OT. 78-76 TNL with 2:07 left. Ashton Eric with 2 FTs with 1:03 left for a 82-80 Team Cannon lead. Duberry misses a long 3 and Spencer Cummings can't convert a follow. TNL is done scoring and Team Cannon converts their FTs for the major 87-80 upset. Great 3 point shooting by Team Cannon and poor zone offense by TNL give you the reasons for the upset.

After a lunch break, we get the 17U Semifinal between TC Elite and the Redhawks. A 12-2 Redhawks run gives them a 17-7 lead late in the 1st quarter. Redhawks finish the quarter up 19-8. TC Elite claw back and are within 31-27 at the half. Alex Koch with 8 points for TC Elite. Taylor Hanson with 7 and 5 rebounds for the Redhawks. Late third quarter the game turns. Jack Ghizoni gets out in front of the pack. A TC Elite player appears to run him down and get a nice block with the lead official right there. Redhawks ball. But wait, the trail official, from the opposite foul line no less, says Ghizoni got hacked. An absolutely brutal call. Coach Schnettler proceeds to argue and get a technical and who can blame him. Ghizoni makes 1 of 2 for the foul and then both technicals. Taylor Hanson converts on the possession for a 5 point swing in a tight game. That's unfortunate. 51-41 Redhawks lead going to the 4th quarter.

Derek Wolhowe for 3 and TC Elite is within 5 in the 1st minute. Coach Schnettler then gets another T. This time for getting in the last word after arguing with the other official about why he wasn't implementing a 5 second closely guarded count (legit question) and getting what seemed to be a strange response. David Gschneider says something after a foul moments later and he gets a T. In fairness, the ref in question is well known to have one of the quickest triggers around so you have to be aware of that. But after all of this, its still only a 9 point deficit for TC Elite with 5 minutes left. But they don't challenge after that. 74-64 Redhawks win. Jack Ghizoni with 18 points to lead the Redhawks. Taylor Hanson with 17 points and 7 rebounds. Stephen Asp with 13 points. Soph Jordan Gieske with a nice performance of 8 points and 9 rebounds off the bench.

Team Cannon giving Triple Threat heartburn in the other semi as they pull to within 2 with 5 minutes left. But Triple Threat goes on a mini run in the next 90 seconds to put the game away. They advance to the championship game with a 65-55 win. TC Elite went on to defeat Team Cannon 84-59 in the 17U 3rd place game.

In a 16U semifinal, MN Select took on MN Glory. Glory out to a 20-5 lead after 1 quarter with 1 of Select's baskets coming from a kid's knees. Select fights back to a 32-26 halftime deficit and they tie the game at 36 but can't get the lead. Glory leads 44-42 going to the 4th quarter. Brandon Canova keeping Select close. Joe Zangel played well for Glory before injuring his back early in the 2nd half and not returning. A 4 point game late when Ben Figini converts 2 3 point plays and a pair of FTs to put the game out of reach. Glory moves on to the semis with a 60-53 win. TNL took out a depleted La Crosse YMCA team in the other semi. Ben Ancius, Hans Erickson and Evan Pederson were all unavailable for the 3rd place game (and I'm assuming some or all of them missed semifinal time). La Crosse scored the 1st 18 points of the 4th quarter to blow open a close game vs Select for a 72-49 victory. That captured 3rd place in the 16U bracket.

In a 15U semifinal, MN Select took on Triple Threat. Select took a 35-32 lead to the 4th quarter. Kebu Johnson with 2 clutch FTs with 28.4 left to tie the game at 44. With no room between the end line and the barrier separating courts, the Triple Threat inbounder takes a quarter step forward and steps on the end line and its a turnover. That's a tough call. MN Select takes the ball down to the wire and when Derek Schofield turns and draws a foul from the far official with 0.1 left on the clock, its not your day. Schofield makes both for a 46-44 win. Matt Dysthe nailed a triple at the buzzer to give the MN Fury 15s 3rd place over Triple Threat.

The 15U and 16U title games were enough to make me want to sleep. TC Elite Black with a 2-3 zone vs MN Select who had no answer for it. 42-37 TC Elite Black wins the 15U title. Brandon Fourcier with 11 points to lead all scorers. MN Glory 73-51 over TNL in the 16U title game. Justin Pahl with 6 of Glory's 11 triples for 23 points. Connor Morton with 4 of the other triples. Mark Blacklock with 10 points and 18 rebounds.

In the 17U title game, Triple Threat jumped on a lethargic Redhawks team. Taylor Hanson hot but Triple Threat leads 13-10 after 1 quarter and coach Birdsong is not at all happy. Triple Threat wins the 2nd quarter 16-6 as the Redhawks get absolutely nothing going. 29-16 Triple Threat at half. Jack Mooney leads Triple Threat with 9 1st half points. Brett Kettenacker then goes off for Triple Threat. Back to back 3s push the lead to 40-24 with 4:10 left in the 3rd quarter. Late 3rd, a great sideline exchange after a ball went out of bounds on the baseline away from the Redhawks bench. This is coach Birdsong talking to the trail official.

Coach: Sir, did you see that?
Ref (deadpan serious): No, did you?
Coach: I thought I did

That conversation caused the entire scorer's table to bust out laughing for the funniest moment of the weekend. 43-33 Triple Threat going to the 4th quarter. Taylor Hanson with 2 and then a steal for an And 1. That cuts the lead down to 47-44 and there's still 5:20 to go. Hanson with a pair of tough misses around another Kettanacker triple. John Rowland (back from prom), nails a 3 with 2:30 to go and its 52-47 Triple Threat. Kettenacker slams the door shut with another triple and 4-4 FTs down the stretch. Coach Birdsong with another classic line before we're done. Redhawks playing D when they need a foul and can't find anyone. "You are trying to foul!" Triple Threat wins 62-49. Kettenacker with all 19 of his points in the 2nd half. Aaron Duske with a quietly productive day or 11 points and 7 rebounds. Taylor Hanson picked up in the 2nd half to finish with 18 and 6 for the Redhawks but no one in double figures. Redhawks played without Cory Booker all day due to the ankle injury suffered yesterday.


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  2. Was that big kid on TNL(#52) Spencer Cummings?? Who was the kid on TNL that had 3 3's in the first 2 minutes (#10)? It was the first time I saw TNL play this season, and I didnt know they had Knopke too!

  3. 52 is Cummings. He came over from Howard Pulley this year. 10 is Brandon Host from Mound-Westonka. Knopke played some with them last year too. When they get it going, they can be very very tough (as witnessed by their performance against Pump N Run up at the Comets tournament)


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