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PREP BOYS BASKETBALL / SECTION 7AA CHAMPIONSHIP / ESKO 50, VIRGINIA 33 Esko boys basketball players wanted to make sure they didn't leave coach Mike Devney on the doorstep of a milestone. So they broke down the door. The Eskomos bottled up Virginia using a pesky 2-3 zone defense and beat the Blue Devils 50-33 in the Section 7AA championship game Friday night at Romano Gym to guarantee a spot in next week's Class A state tournament and sew up Devney's 500th career high school coaching victory.
ELY (25-4) VS. NORTH WOODS (28-1) What: Section 7A championship When: 7 p.m. Where: Hibbing Memorial Arena
Even before the championship game Thursday night, the Section 7AAA boys basketball bracket already resembled so many crumpled-up NCAA brackets that fans are used to throwing away during March Madness. But sixth-seeded Hermantown’s 68-58 victory over fourth-seeded Cloquet at Duluth East High School, which sends the Hawks to their second state tournament in school history, gives meaning to the term bracket-buster.
VIRGINIA (24-5) VS. ESKO (25-4) What: Section 7AA championship When: 7 p.m. Where: Romano Gym
STEPHEN-ARGYLE (27-3) VS. MOUNTAIN IRON-BUHL (28-2) What: Class A state tournament quarterfinal When: 3 p.m. Where: Williams Arena, Minneapolis
HERMANTOWN (13-15) VS. CLOQUET (17-11) What: Section 7AAA championship When: 7 p.m. Where: Duluth East High School
Quinn Fischer is too young to know the late-1960s’ Bob Dylan-penned “The Mighty Quinn” as sung by Manfred Mann. But it almost seems the lyrics were written about the Esko senior guard, who shined in the Eskomos’ 62-44 win over Proctor in a Section 7AA high school boys basketball semifinal Tuesday night at Romano Gym. Everybody's in despair, every girl and boy
ST. PAUL — Duluth East had been here before. For the fourth time since the Greyhounds won their third high school boys hockey state championship 20 years ago, East left the ice following the title game with the runner-up trophy. Top-ranked Minnetonka held on for a 5-2 victory in the Class AA state tournament final Saturday night before 18,194 fans at Xcel Energy Center.
ST. PAUL — Scattered around Xcel Energy Center on Saturday night were members of a select fraternity. About 15 or 16 members of the 1997-98 Duluth East boys hockey team made their way to downtown St. Paul this weekend to celebrate the 20-year anniversary of the school's third, and most recent, state championship and, in an unintended bonus, watched their alma mater try to end the drought.
ST. PAUL — In the movie "D2: The Mighty Ducks," fictional character Russ Tyler uncorked his knucklepuck to beat Team Iceland. Frederick Paine doesn't have a name for the shot he used to beat Edina in Friday night's Class AA semifinals, but the Duluth East junior defenseman was just as successful with it as the Greyhounds defeated the Hornets 4-2 at the Minnesota high school boys hockey state tournament at Xcel Energy Center.