Its one of the fine events of the year with the rescheduled Breakdown Tipoff Classic. How fun it is to feel like a ping pong ball bouncing between gyms. Quality sloppy joes in the hospitality room, but not good when trying to write. Though I did keep the highly important stat sheet clean. St. Cloud State watching all day and UW-Stout in the building just to name a couple but not the usual college crowd that you'd see on the normally scheduled day in mid December. The Mr. Basketball committee front and center as always. Popcorn gentlemen? Funniest moment of the day was early when 1 of the security ladies told Rene Pulley to get off the 1st row of bleachers (signs everywhere to not sit on them). A quality day of basketball with a bit of everything. As to music, my original idea of Beverly Hills Cop II didn't work like I thought it would and we just had a great saxophone song a couple days ago (Bad to the Bone). But I can keep the spirit of those themes with this and still complain about the weather.
Song of the Day
Glenn Frey - The Heat Is On (Beverly Hills Cop I)
Session 1: Shakopee vs #7AAA Orono and #6AA Braham vs Holy Family
Shakopee comes out strong and Orono just doesn't have an answer as they're not able to break Shakopee down. Jason Perkins effective inside, Dylan Ulferts nails a pair of jumpers and 6'4" Kevin Carlson is a nice piece. 30-12 Shakopee at the 4:02 mark. Orono makes a nice run to end the half to cut the margin to 34-23 at the half. I return to this one with 3 minutes and Orono is still down 10 and can't get over the hump. Shakopee wins 64-51.
Braham and Holy Family (9-5, 6-0 MN River) in the West Gym. What an oven, top row had to be pushing 85 degrees so I move down to lower evalations and a cool 80 degrees.. Holy Family 6'8 Jr center Ryan Dahl with 11 points in the first half but he picks up 2 fouls and sits at the 9:11 mark with Holy Family leading 27-16. Tyler Vaughan then goes nuts for Braham to tie the game at 29 at the 5:30 mark. Dahl returns and picks up his 3rd foul at the 3:06 mark. 43-36 Braham at the half, Vaughan with 22 and 7 in the half. Dahl returns in the 2nd half and is absolutely dominant. 60-57 Holy Family with the lead outside of 8 minutes to play and Dahl scores a handful of buckets in a row to stretch the lead to double digits. Post feed after post feed after post feed as Holy Family made it look easy. Vaughan makes 3 late 3s to keep it respectable. Holy Family impressively wins 82-74. Dahl with 25 of his 36 in the 2nd half and he likely had double digit rebounds. Tyler Vaughan with 22 of his 37 in the 1st half and he had at least 9 boards. 6 3s for Vaughan, 3 of those late in a relatively quiet 2nd half.
Session 2: #6AAA St.Cloud Apollo vs #5AAAA Eden Prairie and Duluth East vs #1A Minnesota Transitions
Back to the east gym for the end of the 1st half with MTS and Duluth East. Rodney Owens in foul trouble so I only see a quick glimpse of him on the floor. A Johnny Woodard 3 pushes the East lead to 6 but MTS comes back to cut the lead to 33-32 at the half. MTS not looking good at all in the half. After hearing MTS had a 52-45 lead, I return for the last 4 minutes and a 56 all tie. MTS with the next 4 for a 60-56 lead. Then 2 missed free throws and Duluth East comes back with a 3 to give them the 61-60 lead with 1:50 left. After a pair of MTS misses. Johnny Woodard with 5 of 6 free throws to push the lead to 66-60 with 30.3 left. Kyle Noreen for 3 but Taylor Stafford makes 2 free throws to seal a 69-65 Duluth East win. Its their first win away from home this season. MTS falls on back to back days.
In the west gym, Eden Prairie put a beating on Apollo. 11-7 before Eden Prairie uses traps to generate a 21-5 run and blow this one wide open. 35-16 Eden Prairie at the half and they roll from there. Apollo not able to get into sets and pound the ball inside. Eden Prairie with great balance and supreme hustle and grit.
Session 3: Waconia vs Apple Valley and #5A Maranatha vs Henry Sibley
I check out the 1st half of MCA vs Sibley and it was largely a snooze fest. But then Adam Huessner and Dante Grant heated up from 3 vs the MCA zone. Huessner with 3 straight 3s and Grant with 3 in the half. A pair of Jamey Hammond 3s keep MCA close. 34-27 Sibley at the half. Thanks to the D1 battle in the main gym, I miss the entire second half of this one though it sounds like Darian Pittman was outstanding in the comeback win for MCA.
Its Tom Schalk vs Shelby Moats in the main gym. This one didn't disappoint as I stay for all of it. Ben Kortuem's back to back 3s puts Waconia up 23-11 at the 10:10 mark but Schalk carries the Eagles the rest of the half. 34-32 Waconia at the break. Schalk with 18 of the 32 with 11 rebounds. Moats 13 and 8. Kortuem 12 on 4 3s. Schalk on the post for 2 to give Apple Valley their 1st lead in forever, 48-47 with 11:48 to go. Moats inside out to Kortuem for his 6th 3 in a run that puts Waconia up 60-53 with about 4 minutes left. Then its Dustin Fronk. He nails a 3, then a floater to tie the game, and a skip pass finds him for 3 in the right corner. 8 points in a 10-0 run to put Apple Valley up 63-60 with 1:51 left. Waconia patient and not fouling. Schalk catches and the foul line and looks. Nothing so he goes off the dribble and scores with 27.5 left for a 65-62 lead. Fronk was hot from 3 but he goes 1-4 from the line and Kortuem's 7th 3 cuts the lead to 66-65. After 1 FT, Moats gets a look at a 3 and leaves it short. Putback at the buzzer is no good and Apple Valley comes from behind to win 67-65. Tom Schalk with 27 points and 14 rebounds to lead Apple Valley. Dustin Fronk 17 points, 9 of them late to bring the Eagles back. Shelby Moats 21 and 11. Ben Kortuem 7 3s for 27 points.
Session 4: Buzzer Beaters!
For fun, let's do this session in real time. It starts with a sleepy start from #3AAA Benilde-St. Margaret's vs Cretin-Derham Hall. Raijon Kelly nails a 3 at 13:59 to force a BSM timeout down 11-2. Since I've seen these 2 already, let's go watch the end of Buffalo vs Marshall. Buffalo up 49-41 with 6:16 left and they extend that lead to 60-48 and look to be in control. But this one doesn't end that easily. Marshall trapping on makes and misses (a rare sight in MN). They force 3 straight turnovers and 1 free throw with 2:09 left cuts the lead to 60-56 after an 8-0 run. Marshall makes 1 3 to cut the lead to 3 but Buffalo counters with 6-6 FTs. 66-59 Buffalo with 1:09 left. Caleb Johnson with 1 3 point play and then another chance at one (missed FT). Buffalo still looks in good shape after 2 more Andy Ortmann FTs with 44.3 left, 69-64 lead. A driving layup for Marshall and then Buffalo turns it over with 25 seconds left. It's Johnson from the left corner for 3 with 12 seconds left and we're tied at 69. Buffalo right back the other way, Ortmann catches left wing and drives middle. The defense collapses and he kicks out to Josh High who knocks down the 3 just as time runs out. Buffalo wins a thriller 72-69. Andy Ortmann 6 of 6 FTs and the game winning assist in the last 2 minutes.
Back to BSM vs CDH in the west gym as they have about 10 minutes left and CDH up 48-45. CDH extends the lead to 8, 55-47 with 7:45 left. Then BSM makes a comeback. Isaiah Zierden to Evan Battle for a layup with 4:35 left to cut the lead to 57-54. Zierden then on a double flare screen is fouled and makes all 3 free throws. The teams trade turnovers and then CDH out on a 3 on 2 break. Kyle Washington with a big block and CDH turns it over. BSM with another turnover but another Washington block results in a tie up that goes to Benilde with 1:27 left. Zierden a good look at a 3 to take the lead but its no good. Taylor Montero 1 free throw with 41.3 left for a 60-58 CDH lead. Out of a timeout, Zierden to the basket and scores with 26 seconds left.to tie the game. CDH goes with no timeout. Raijon Kelly holds and then goes and misses with 7 seconds left. BSM right back and Zierden with an open look on the left wing. No good and it looks like we'll have OT, but there's more time than you think and Myles Barnes grabs the miss off the left block and banks it home at the buzzer for a 62-60 BSM win. Another amazing finish. Isaiah Zierden leads BSM with 26 points. Raijon Kelly 18 for CDH.
Final Session: #1AAAA Hopkins vs #2AAAA Osseo and #3AAAA Lakeville South at Minnetonka
So thanks to the buzzer beater, I'm late for the start of the #1 vs #2 showdown in the small east gym. Not good as the gym is PACKED! People out the door 10 thick. Great atmosphere. Knowing Osseo and Hopkins both travel well, if the Breakdown had to do it over again, they'd reschedule this one for the main gym. I do see the last 6 minutes which don't reveal much. Joe Coleman crazy athletic around the rim. Hopkins wins easily 86-68.
So I end up seeing the entire first half of Lakeville South vs Minnetonka. Lakeville South with a sleepy start as Tonka gets up on them 23-15 at the 10:29 mark before South finally takes an overdue timeout to wake up the troops. That must have inspired Alex Richter as he proceeds to take over. A bucket and a strong dunk at 8:05 to cut the lead to 1. Then 3 quick passes out of a timeout allow South to go full court and get Richter an easy layup at the halftime buzzer. 48-35 South at half, Richter 21 points. I come back for the end and its out of hand. Richter finishes with 30. Riley West 20, Jon Christensen 21. Nick Latzke 22 points for the Skippers.