The AA Semifinal between Litchfield and Perham has already ignited the almost annual shot clock debate caused by the AA semifinals. There's definitely a different taste for a defensive brand of basketball that isn't one for most average fans and can be difficult for many hardcore fans. Great twitter debate amongst some of the Tri-Metro coaches tonight about it (and that's a largely AA league). The game made up for much of the pain with a clear out and buzzer beater for the win. Litchfield with no name that sticks out but as much a team as any team out there.
Ditto that for Plainview-Elgin-Millville who took out St. Peter in the quarters and then handled Braham in the semis. They have athletes, some size and Cory Speer orchestrated it. Braham got another big night from Tyler Vaughan but not enough depth. After 34, 12 and 7 to steal one from St. Croix Lutheran, he added 35 and 10 tonight. Only other loss of the year for Braham was in the season opener at Hopkins.
Speaking of Hopkins, I have to talk about the Osseo vs Hopkins semifinal. What an amazing game that has to go down as one for the ages. It takes me back to Armstrong vs Buffalo from 2007 but even better. Each team had responses for the other. Big plays. Siyani Chambers goes out with 3 state titles and a semifinal loss where he stepped up large. Just no good way to give the game enough words.
A tale of 2 games in the other AAAA semifinal. Eden Prairie wins the first 16 minutes by 14 and then Lakeville North dominates from there. The Panthers front line impressive again and their defense holds down Grant Shaeffer after his quarterfinal explosion vs Eastview. Disappointing Eden Prairie crowd for the game. Eden Prairie will end up with Eastview, Lakeville North and Hopkins at state. Great matchup of front lines in the state title game with Johnson, Bloom, Gichaba and Theisen going up against Saarela, Rasmussen and Flack. 2 very strong and even teams.