A sad day as I didn't make it back to The Old Kingdom for the Midwest Players Classic. But the local schedule kept me busy with a full day of 2 courts at Hopkins for the Super 60 Showcase. Pizza and a hot dog on the menu with a couple of bottles of Coke for refreshment. Many officials getting in double (or triple) duty on the day. Here are some of the sights and sounds.
Game 1: St. Paul Central vs Rosemount
Rosemount would have early foul trouble with PG Myka Edmond getting 2 in the 1st 2 minutes. Then both Loehr towers would get their 2nd early in the half. But Central couldn't take advantage of that and Rosemount will still take a 1 point lead to the break. A big 2nd half of 20 points from Luke Siwek would help the Irish pull away. An 18-2 run midway through the 2nd half breaks the game open. Rosemount wins 70-56. Luke Siwek with 20 of his 21 in the 2nd half. Alec Loehr leads all scorers with 25 points including 15 free throws. Soph Daveonte Davis leads Central with 24 points.
Game 2: Southwest Christian vs #5A Cass Lake-Bena
Cass Lake-Bena with 3 early 3s in a 9-1 run to jump out in front. The SW Christian matchup zone befuddling the Panthers offense. Spencer Weiss would lead an 11-2 Stars run in the 2nd half to open up a 9 point lead. Cass Lake-Bena would cut that to 3 but get no closer. SW Christian wins 71-64. Spencer Weiss with a career high 22 points, 14 of those in the 2nd half. Next up for the Stars is a big MCAA clash at Heritage on Tuesday.
Game 3: #2A Red Lake vs #7A Hillcrest Lutheran
A possible state preview between teams from sections 6 and 8. Red Lake with lots of size and length. They were able to use that size to rebound and then throw long outlets for buckets. Jamie Cook and Rob McClain make enough plays in the halfcourt. Not quite enough Red Lake wins 72-61. 4 Warriors in double figures with Jamie Cook leading with 18. Hillcrest gets 20 from Tommy Thompson and 17 from Kyler Newman. Thompson with some big 3s in the 2nd half to keep the Comets close.
Interlude: Now its time to switch over to the main court for the rest of the day. We pick it up with the overtime period between Waconia and Columbia Heights. Waconia getting a Nick Fulford putback at the buzzer to force overtime after Heights had a double figure lead. Wendell Matthews steps up to the line with 4.1 left in the OT and makes both trailing by 1. Then some clock issues at the end of OT before Waconia gets a last chance. That's no good and Columbia Heights hangs on to win 76-75 in OT.
Game 4: Grand Rapids vs Brooklyn Center
Slow start for Brooklyn Center as they can't buy a shot. But Grand Rapids can't generate much offense either and they lead 12-9 at the 9:40 mark. Brooklyn Center controls the rest of the half as they go on a 21-8 run before the Thunderbirds score the final bucket of the half. 30-20 Centaurs at the break. Guard Jake Skelly would keep the Thunderbirds close and then center Brock Schrom would take over inside. Nate Seelye is the only other Grand Rapids player to provide offense but its all enough. Skelly finds a loose ball and scores with 35 seconds left to take the lead. Then he hits 4-4 FTs to seal it. Grand Rapids comes back to win 69-64. Skelly and Schrom both go for over 20. Lu'Cye Patterson with some nice distribution from the point spot for Brooklyn Center as the Centaurs get 4 starters in double figures.
Game 5: Minnetonka vs Buffalo
Buffalo would slow the pace with a 2-1-2 dribble drive motion look in the 1st half. That was successful along with slipping screens on BLOBs. The Tonka offense couldn't generate anything until late in the half. Buffalo up 32-26 at the break. But Buffalo's offense disappears in the 2nd half. They score 2 FGs in the 1st 15 minutes of the half. Tonka would start the half on a 16-2 run, some 3/4 1-2-2 pressure contributing to that. Then offensive putbacks keep the lead intact. Minnetonka wins 57-46. Quiet day for Bert Hedstrom but Minnetonka still has him and 3 other starters in double figures.
Game 6: #2AAAA Maple Grove at #2AAAA Hopkins
A high paced first half. Joe Hedstrom inside playing as well as I've seen him play in high school. Blaise Beauchamp and Anthony Davis attacking for points for Hopkins as well. Tywhon Pickford being himself for Maple Grove. Ish El-Amin with a drive off a high ball screen for a dunk. 58-54 Hopkins with 11 minutes left. But then the story of this game takes over. Its all Brad Davison. He drives into Hedstrom for a FT (Hedstrom leaves with a bloody lip). Then an assist to Jack Hutchinson for a layup and Davison converts a turnover. Quick Hopkins timeout. Then its Davison with the 3 point play, another hoop and the no conscience pullup 3 in transition. Add 2 more free throws (Hedstrom returns after Hopkins is outscored 15-5 since he left) and then a triple. 72-63 Maple Grove with just over 6 minutes left. Davison scores the last 15 and 16 total in the 18-5 run with an assist on the other hoop. Maple Grove goes on to win 81-70. Brad Davison with another Mr Basketball level performance of 41 points, 12 rebounds and a handful of assists. Tywhon Pickford adds 22. Hopkins gets 4 in double figures including a 16 point likely double double from Joe Hedstrom. Rough stretch here for Hopkins being blown out by Wayzata and losing this one. No Zeke Nnaji due to injury. But their shot selection is tough on offense and defensively they aren't able to get stops. Not a good combination.