Repeat Champions Dominate Boys Basketball Tournament [Photos]
Each team that won a championship at the Minnesota boys state basketball tournament has done so before. It was my pleasure to assist KDHL in the coverage.
While none of the winners could be considered big underdogs, two of them had to pull off upsets to get to the championship. A pair of top seeds were eliminated in the semifinals.
Minneapolis DeLaSalle won a state-record fifth consecutive title with just one returning starter from last year's edition of the Islanders. It was their 10th overall title. They beat Fergus Falls 79-65 in the AAA title game at Target Center on Saturday evening. Red Wing won the third-place game.
Hopkins rallied from a late seven-point deficit against Lakeville North to win the AAAA championship 64-55. It was the Royals' ninth championship. Lakeville North had knocked unbeaten Osseo out in the semifinals. The Orioles then lost the third-place game to Apple Valley.
Braham won the AA title, their fourth overall. The Bombers outscored Jackson County Central 96-60. Braham had upset top-ranked, top-seeded St Croix Lutheran in the semifinals. The Crusaders cruised in the third-place game over Annandale.
Minneapolis North returned to the winner's circle for the first time since 2003, their last appearance at the state tournament. After nearly being closed a few years ago, the school is now a Class A team. The Polars had a big second half against Section 1A representative Goodhue for the 68-45 victory. The Wildcats rallied from an early double-digit hole to take a 26-25 halftime lead.
KDHL, the mighty 920, has been broadcasting the state boys tournament for nearly 70 years. It is an impressive run that I am thrilled to be a part of the past few years. I am doing my best to fill the void created with the passing of legendary broadcaster Mike Morrissey. Many people comment on him when I travel around covering games. My thanks to Gordy Kosfeld for the opportunity to be part of the tradition.