Saturday at the 2009 MN Select Classic

11 sessions Saturday at the MN Select Classic. Here's what I saw during the day.

Session 1
TC Elite 16s up 28-23 at the break over Comets White. They quickly extend the lead to 13 and then out to 21 late. 63-45 final. MN Heat Select 15s open up a 20 point halftime lead that gets cut to 13 in the 2nd half but they win 59-44.

Top game of the session was the Comets Elite 15s against TC Elite Black. Black up 27-13 with 5:15 left in the 1st half but they give up a 17-4 Comets run to end the 1st half to only lead 31-30 at the break. Black by 7 with 8:32 to play and they up that lead to 10, but the Comets won't go away. Austin Pohlen (Grand Rapids) drills a triple with 2:07 left for a 63-61 Comets lead. Black with a triple with 33 seconds left to tie the game at 66. The Comets play for 1 and Jim Unger (Willmar) drives left baseline and makes a floater with 3 seconds left for a 68-66 Comets win. Nice comeback win for them against a solid TC Black team.

Session 2
To the main gym to check in on the Heat 17 Elites against Comets North. They're out of the gate 11-0 thanks to a quick start from Ryan Duxbury. The lead extends to 16 in the 1st half. The Heat don't put the game away and North is within 10 with 11:07 to play. A 12-2 Heat run over the next 2:45 puts the game out of reach. Heat win 67-52.

Session 3
I stay in the main gym for my 1st look at the Select-Kruger squad against the SW MN Heat. Worth noting here that this Heat team (not affliated or to be confused with the Minnesota Heat mentioned previously) is playing up a level as the TBD team in pool C. Marshall point guard Caleb Johnson on hand, but the Heat are so small he's playing the post. 16-6 Heat lead with 7 minutes left in the half as Zak Pendleton has a pair of triples. But the Heat go cold and Select comes back for a 22-18 lead at the half. The game never gets out of hand, but the Heat never really threaten. 57-53 Select wins. Caleb Johnson with 9 points and 14 rebounds for the Heat on my stat sheet.

Session 4
I like this gym as the 43 Hoops 16 B team is playing against the Comets White team. The Comets pack in a 1-2-2 zone daring 43 Hoops to shoot over it as they don't have the athletes to matchup. Works well as the Comets get out to a 8-2 lead with 12:29 left in the half (triples again) and coach Grant Hemmingsen is not at all pleased with his team's defense. They crank up a 3 quarter court 1-2-2 trap and Jeremy Borg's entrance into the game gives them a spark (a pair of high post buckets against the zone were big). The Comets may not have scored a field goal the rest of the half. 33-15 43 Hoops at the half but they shot 2-13 from 3 on my sheet.

TC Elite Black 15s steamroll the 14U Midtown Kings 77-33 after a 47-11 start. Heat Select 15s win 49-35 over MN Select. Comets 15 Elites up 14 with 3 to play against the Schoolers 14s but give up 9 in a row to make it interesting. Comets hold on 65-58.

Session 5
In 17s action, Prior Lake (a good chunk of their varsity team) against 43 Hoops II. Prior Lake out to a 14-5 lead with 8:30 left in the half in a shocker. So much for that, 43 Hoops comes back big to win 67-36. Dominique Dawson with 3 straight putbacks as the run put 43 Hoops over the top.

The rest of the games were 16s. MN Heat Elite 16s hammered the MN Select 16s 63-27 after giving up a bucket to start the game, then countering with a 12-0 run. Rob Daul with a nasty tape job on his leg thanks to softball. Almost looks like plaster of paris or a cast. TNL up 15 on Wizard's Den late in the 1st half. They raid the Den in the 2nd half for a 75-41 win.

Session 6
43 Hoops-Carr and the Heat 17 Elite roll in warmups for their clash in session 9. Carr by 23 at the half, Heat by 18 at the half. Heat win 79-45. 43 Hoops Carr wins 86-65.

Session 7
A nice 15U session with pools A and B up for grabs. In pool A, the Schoolers 15s vs MN Southside. In pool B, 43 Hoops-Daniels vs Heat Select. 43 Hoops up 33-5 with 7:20 in the 1st half. Yikes. Needless to say I saw that score from the main gym and immediately went back to the Southside game. Schoolers giving Southside all they want with a 21-8 lead with 8:39 left in the 1st half. Southside claws back and cuts the deficit to 32-28 at the break. Southside keeps it going in the 2nd half as they lead by 4 with about 10 minutes left and they win 64-57. In the Pool A 3rd place game, TC Elite White gets a layup with 17 seconds left for a 59-57 over the Tri-City Bulldogs.

Session 8
Back to the main gym to prep for the big 17U game, but 1st we have the 43 Hoops 16 B squad against TC Elite. 34-22 43 Hoops at the half. 42-36 43 Hoops with 9:30 to play and coach Hemmingsen not happy with his team's effort. They win 57-45.

Session 9
To the main attraction of the 1st 2 days, Heat Elite 17s vs 43 Hoops Carr 16s. 1st half very back and forth. 43 Hoops with a 27-24 lead. The Heat's Jesse George leads all scorers with 7 1st half points thanks to his outside shooting. Marquel Curtis leads 43 Hoops with 6 points in the half. 43 Hoops extends the lead to 8 with 13 minutes left. Then a pair of horrible charging calls on Ryan Duxbury and then the magical moment of the day. Zach Riedeman and Jordan Van Eps swap elbows and both get thrown out. But no free throws are shot. Very strange and very consistent with the strange officiating in this game. Curtis with a triple and the lead is 10 with the game being very helter skelter which favors 43 Hoops. 43 Hoops goes on to win 69-51. Jordan Smith with 4 triples and 14 points for the victors. Marquel Curtis and Ross Travis (nice minutes from him) with 11 each. Jesse George leads the Heat with 15 points and Nick Quicksell with 12 points on my sheet.

Session 10
The Redhawks use their talons to rip and tear apart Select-Kruger to the tune of 29-4 with 8 minutes left in the 1st half. 94 Feet only up 9 on SW MN Heat at the half but they roll to an 18 point win, 69-51. Redhawks win 63-31.

Session 11
Heat Select move on over the Midtown Kings in a 15U playin game. MN Select hang on in their 15U playin game with a 61-56 win over TC Elite White. 43 Hoops 16U Hemmingsen buries P-Town (a group of Wayzata kids) 95-26. Comets Blue with a 55-53 win over Select James to throw Pool A into complete chaos (bottom 3 teams all 1-2). But Select James still wins the point differental battle so I think they'll be the 2 seed from the pool.

Bracket games for Sunday (games in bracket order)

17U

43 Hoops 17U Hemmingsen vs SW MN Heat/MN Heat Elite winner
Redhawks vs Prior Lake/Triple Threat-Weber winner
43 Hoops 16U Carr vs Comets Blue/Select Kruger winner
94 Ft of Game vs Comets North/Select James winner

16U
43 Hoops 16U Hemmingsen vs Wizard's Den
TC Elite vs MN Select
MSB vs TNL
Comets White vs MN Heat Elite

15U
MN Southside vs MN Heat Select
Comets Elite vs MN Select
43 Hoops vs Tri-City Bulldogs/TC Elite Black
Dakota Schoolers 14U vs winner of Comets White/Dakota Schoolers 15U

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