Hornet stars sting the Skippers

Prologue
Off to Minnetonka for a Lake Conference showdown between the Skippers and Edina.  A late arrival for the varsity game only means no concessions.  A very disappointing crowd on hand.  The Mr. Basketball committee on hand taking it in.  Gustavus also watching.

Game Time
The early story is Minnetonka's 3 point shooting.  Their 1st field goals are from deep.  Andrew Grosz with the 1st 3, then Luke Petterson off an nice inbounds set for the 4 point play.  Then Mike Fernando off the bounce and he throws down on Reggie Lynch for an emphatic 3 point play.  21-12 Skippers at the 8:10 mark.  Edina Graham Woodward getting his offense only in transition in the early going but then he gets it going.  An assist for a Reggie Lynch 3 point play, a steal for 2, 2 free throws, a circus 2 and 4 more for 10 in a row.  That ties the game at 25 at the 4:40 mark.  Woodward pulls for 3 countered by a Petterson 3.  Lynch with a putback dunk and a flare screen for a Woodward 3.  37-32 Edina at the half.  Woodward with 23 of those.

Malcolm Moore with the 1st 5 for Minnetonka.  Woodward upstairs to Lynch for the dunk.  41-37 Edina at the 15:22 mark.  Back and forth we go.  Woodward with a 3 for a 52-50 Edina lead with 9:15 left.  Moore for 3 and Petterson with a steal for 2.  55-52 Minnetonka lead with 8:10 left and the Skippers bench is up as there's a momentum shift feeling.  Woodward smacks that down with a bucket on the other end.  Bremiah Snyder with a free throw at the 6:05 mark after a possession of THE WORLD'S WORST OFFENSE.  61-58 Minnetonka leading.  Then Lynch asserting himself inside with 8 in row for the Hornets, 6 of 6 from the charity stripe.  66-63 Edina with 4:09 left.  Skippers within one but a dangerous corner to top pass is picked off by Mark Handberg who draws an intentional foul.  The foul is worth 1 of 2 and Woodward makes 2 freebies on the possession.  69-65 Edina leading.  Lynch with a free throw and then another lob from Woodward for a dunk.  72-65 with 1:55 left.  Edina makes free throws from there for a 81-73 win.

Post Game
Minnetonka gets 5 3s and 17 points from Andrew Grosz.  Luke Petterson with 14 off the bench including 3 3s.   The Skippers get great balance with 6 players scoring 8 or more points.  But down the stretch not having a Riley Dearring as a goto guy was felt.  Dearring out with a broken left hand and hopes to return in about a week.  I was surprised the Skippers didn't do far more to take the ball out of Woodward's hands. More to the point, no real emphasis on making the other 3 starters beat you.  Early on, Woodward was effective in transition but the Skippers did manage to quiet that down.  But they gave up 20 free throws to Tyus Jones and now 15-16 to Woodward.  Can't give freebies against star guards.  Minnetonka falls to 15-3 overall, 1-1 in the Lake Conference.  Next week they go to Wayzata and host Hopkins on Friday.

For Edina, the stars both had big games.  Graham Woodward with 23 of his 41 in the 1st half.  5 of 6 free throws and a pretty drive and lob assist for a Lynch dunk in the last 2:38 to take a 2 point lead and close it out like a star should.  Reggie Lynch quiet in the first half but a big 2nd half where he actually outscored Woodward 21-18.  He finishes with 24 points, 11 boards and 4 blocks on my sheet.  You could see from the beginning of the game that Minnetonka wanted absolutely no part of him inside and when they did come in, he had 3 1st half blocks.  He added a huge block that almost destroyed the Minnetonka student section in the 2nd half.  When the 2 stars get 65 points, you only need 16 from the rest of the team.  Normally Minnetonka's undersized front line is still effective due to their toughness but they had no answer for Lynch down low in the last 7+ minutes.  Edina 1-0 in the league and 12-6 overall.  A very good road win in conference after the thrashing at Elk River on Tuesday.  The Hornets are at Eden Prairie on Tuesday and at Wayzata on Friday.

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