KDHL Baseline to Baseline Boys Basketball Class 2A Preview
Let's be totally honest as long as Jalen Suggs is healthy then Minnehaha Academy is favored to win the Class 2A Minnesota Boys Basketball State Tournament. The Redhawks (26-2) will play Section 2 Champion St. Peter (22-6) at 6:00 p.m. Wednesday at the Target Center in downtown Minneapolis.
Suggs is that good a player. The 6'4 junior is averaging 23.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, 6.2 assists a game. He can do it all on the floor with over 50 three point baskets, attacks the rim (nearly 200 free throw attempts and 151 points from the line). But as evidenced by Matthew Hurt of John Marshall not getting to the State Tournament the Redhawks have some very good athletes around Suggs. Minnehaha is the two time defending Class 2A State Champions and they have to have the toughest schedule among 2A schools in the state.
Minnehaha is averaging 76 points and allowing 54 per game. The two losses came against Class 4A Hopkins 66-59 and 97-85.
St. Peter has upset on their minds when they enter Target Center Wednesday night. The Saints go marching into the State Tournament joining their boys hockey and girls basketball teams for that accomplishment this winter. Last year St. Peter had 7 wins. They are led by junior 6'6 Wyatt Olson, already the career rebound leader with 704 carems and over 1,000 career points.
KDHL will be broadcasting the 8:00 p.m. game Wednesday night featuring the #4 seed Melrose Area Dutchmen (26-4) and #5 seed Lake City Tigers (26-2) at Target Center.
Lake City averages 66 points while allowing 48 and Melrose Area scores 65.5 and give up 54.5 points per contest. The Dutchmen and Tigers both have 18 game winning streaks going into this game.
Melrose is led offensively by senior 6'0 Preston Keaveny averaging approximately 20 points per game. Keaveny has 40 three point baskets and has scored 111 points at the free throw line.
Lake City went undefeated in the Hiawatha Valley League so you know they are very good. They are so hard to beat because they take care of the ball extremely well averaging just 8 turnovers a game. Junior 6'4 Nathan Heise leads the team with 22.1 points per game, 6.7 rebounds and over 4 assists a game. Classmate Reid Gastner averages 14.7 points, 6.7 rebounds and over 4 assists a game. Both have scored over 1,000 career points and were starters as freshmen on the 2017 State Tournament team.
Tigers senior 6'5 Ethan Heitman was the State High Jump Champion last spring.
The 6:00 p.m. Williams Arena game has #2 seed Minneapolis North (21-9) playing Esko (21-9). The Polars average 73.2 and allow 57.5 points per game while the Eskomos score 71 and give up 58 points per contest. Junior 6'0 Travis Spindler leads the team with 18.8 points per game. Spindler has 59 three point baskets and has scored 134 points at the free throw line.
Minneapolis North features two players with 100 assists or better this season. Seniors 6'2 Omar Brown (100 assists) and 6'0 Eli Campbell. Campbell adds 17.4 points. Sophomore 6'7 Davon Townley Junior is top in rebounds with 7.6 per game.
#3 seed Perham Yellowjackets (29-1) open at 8:00 p.m. in The Barn against Redwood Valley (16-11). The Yellowjackets only loss came against Minnehaha Academy (78-48) at Cretin-Derham-Hall. That means Perham is riding a 28 game winning streak.
The Yellowjackets average 75 points and give up an average 51 points per game.
Redwood Valley scores 75 points per contest and allows 68 points each outing.
Senior 6'3 Josh Jeziorski is Perham's leading scorer with 18.1 points per game and 7.1 rebounds. Jeziorski has 63 three point baskets in 30 games. Classmate Jenson Beachy averages 17.7 points per game with 44 three point baskets.
The Cardinals are led offensively by senior 6'1 Cole Woodford with 20.9 points per game. He also averages over 6 rebounds and about 3 assists a game. The only other Redwood Valley player averaging double figures is senior 6'0 Bronson Smith with 10.3 points per game.