Day 1 2011 PNR Spring Classic

Day 1 of the Pump N Run Spring Classic is in the books.  My thoughts.

I had to partake in the $4 hot dog meal deal which was well worth it thanks to a quality selection of chips.  But no pure cola available (was that true?) so I went with a very rare Mountain Dew (that's more frequent than me drinking diet though). 

Plenty of blowouts to go around but some interesting games too.  MN PNR 17s avoided a major upset by holding off WI Blizzard-Emery 59-54 to win their pool.  PNR trailed by 3 at halftime.  Carnell Sheppard came up with a clutch stretch in the comeback.  WOTN got a post jumper from Kyle Bauman with 50 seconds left to take the lead and win their pool.  MN Southside held off IA PNR #1 by 5 to win their pool.  MN Heat Elite with a good win over WI Blizzard's top team to win their pool.  @KuckyMonster (still the best player twitter ID out there), Mitchell Kuck, shot it well and productive inside play from all their bigs.  Hope WI Blizzard Juac Majok is OK after going down late in their game with the Heat.  He showed some nice flashes in that game.  

SW MN Stars got good work from Zach Huisken as they won their pool.  Ultimate Hoops 16s rolled over a respectable WI Starz squad.  Love their new white uniforms with green and the blue trim.  Dakota Pride 16s very impressive too.  AJ Jacobsen is the real deal for a squad that has plenty of talent.  He flips between ECI and the Dakota Pride.  WI Swing's Zak Showalter with the best dunk I saw of the day with a 2 hander in traffic.  The 6'2 guard has added some real bounce.  Lefty soph star Nick Fuller played well too for the Swing.  After seeing them live, I think they're too deep and athletic for their half of the bracket.  I'd be very surprised if the final isn't MN PNR vs them.  Great to see Wisconsin's top hoops scribe Mark Miller in the building and talk to him for a while.  I grew up reading his work and he's outstanding.  A real pleasure to have him on our side of the river covering the games.

Sioux Falls Washington has 1 kid playing for the top IA PNR team and 1 playing for EOTO Gold (a much improved squad by the way with Trent Pollard and Tim Gill with Dwight Anderson joining them this weekend).  What's up with that?  Minocqua, WI has a 6'10 kid and just down the road Tomahawk, WI has a 7 footer.  New meaning to the term northwoods?  Amazing crowd for that almost PNR upset.  People packed on both side and even standing on the sidelines for that one.  Biggest crowd I've seen watch an AAU game on 1 court in the activity center (here in MN anyway, Denver crowds are bigger)

Gold Bracket matchups
17s) RK Elite vs WOTN and Southside vs ?? in the playin games.  MN PNR vs MN Heat Duberry, WI Blaze vs 1st playin, WI Swing Litscher vs MN Heat Elite, SW MN Stars vs 2nd Playin. 

16s) SW MN Stars vs sleeper MN Jaguars in playin game, winner will face IA PNR #1, MN PNR vs MN Heat Altena, WI Swing-Bench vs WOTN, Dakota Pride vs Ultimate Hoops in outstanding quarterfinal at 11:20. 

15s games, there are 6 pigtail games.

MN Ballers or WI Academy vs MN Heat Frank or WI Starz
Dakota Pride vs MN Heat Gene
IA PNR #1 vs WI Swing or MN Heat Weimar
MN Fury Black vs WOTN
SW MN Stars vs WI Blaze
MN Heat Select vs TNA Brown (14U) or RK Elite.

Winner of pigtail 1 plays MN PNR.
Pigtail 2 and 3 winners play each other in same half of bracket.
Pigtail 4 winner plays MN Elite (projected MN Fury Black is a great game at 1:40)
Pigtail 5 and 6 winners play each other in the other quarterfinal.

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