DULUTH EAST (24-4) VS. CAMBRIDGE-ISANTI (23-4)

What: Section 7AAAA final

When: 7 p.m.

Where: Elk River H.S.

Outlook: Not only is section pride on the line, but family pride is, as well. East coach Rhett McDonald is the son of Cambridge-Isanti coach Mike McDonald. The teams met twice earlier this season, with the Bluejackets winning 69-65 and 83-77 in a span of 10 days in December. The Greyhounds are seeking their 14th berth in the state tournament but first since 2012. Junior Mattie Thompson (17.6 points per game) leads East in scoring and is second in rebounds (6.4) behind junior center Noah Paulson (14.2 ppg, 8.4 rebounds per game). Senior guard Noah Winesett (12.7 ppg) is an all-around player, while junior Giovani Saldivar (48.5 percent) and sophomore Will Van Scoy (47.2 percent) are 3-point sharpshooters. The Greyhounds have won 11 straight games since late January. … Cambridge-Isanti has only made two trips to state, including last season. The Bluejackets average 82.3 points per game and beat Forest Lake 92-75 in the semifinal round. Senior guard Henry Abraham ranks second in the state in scoring (33.5 ppg) and is a McDonald Award finalist. Abraham has made 145 3-pointers and 180 free throws. Senior guard Micah Ladd (15.3 ppg) is the only other player scoring in double digits.

Twitter: @rickweegman

— Rick Weegman



HERMANTOWN (21-7) VS. PRINCETON (24-4)

What: Section 7AAA final

When: 7 p.m.

Where: Duluth East H.S.

Outlook: Expect a high-scoring game, a la the Tigers’ 89-84 victory in mid-December, since top-seeded Princeton averages a Class AAA-best 86 points per game and second-seeded Hermantown averages 76.4. Hermantown’s only previous state tournament appearances came in 2015 and 2018. The Hawks rebounded from a slow 5-5 start that included that five-point loss to Princeton to go 16-2 the rest of the way. They avenged both defeats in that span to Bemidji and Hibbing, beating the Bluejackets 66-58 in the section semifinals. Peter Soumis (24.5 ppg, 5.3 assists per game, 63.5 percent field-goal shooting, 83.3 percent from foul line) is the unquestioned leader, while fellow senior guard Kaden Kucza and senior center Sam Mesedahl are other top options on a team that likes to shoot 3-pointers and run the court. … The Tigers, who defeated Duluth Denfeld and Grand Rapids by double digits in their other playoff games, are led by Cody Miller (18.2 ppg), Haydn Stay (14.2 ppg) and Tate Laabs (12.3) plus own a deep bench. The Tigers have won 17 of their past 18 games, only losing to Mississippi 8 rival Cambridge-Isanti, whom they defeated three days later in double overtime to win the conference title. Princeton ended an 87-year state tournament drought by winning the section a year ago.

Radio: WKLK-FM 96.5

Twitter: @Malcomb_PJ

— Rick Weegman