A Return to Madness
       “…the quality or state of being insane, senseless, extreme, intense…”



March 15 , 2011
My Two Cents
by Gary Knox




Talk about March Madness. The Cinderella story of the Minnesota State Tournament is the (6-24) Anoka Tornadoes. This is Anoka’s first ever post season appearance. The Tornadoes are led by two ninth-graders, Claire Lundberg  (8.6 points per game) and Kyrah Fredenburg, (7.4 points and 7.0 rebounds per game). This story has the potential for playoff magic. It’s so great, that gPrep only named two “Players of the week” this week, Lundberg and Fredenburg. The previously unranked Tornadoes reeked havoc in their section tournament. Anoka will try to continue its unexpected destruction as it takes on (27-2) defending State Champion Lakeville North, led by Senior Rachel Banham, the Pioneer Press’ “Girls Basketball Player of the Year” and the Star Tribune’s “Metro Player of the Year”.
Thirty two teams will face off on the hardwood, from Class A to Class AAAA. Minnehaha Academy (AA), Benilde-St. Margaret (AAA) and Lakeville North, (AAAA)  will all defend their 2010 titles. But, Top seeded Hill-Murray (AAA) and Hopkins (AAAA) will have something to say about that. Meanwhile, Class A will be up for grabs as the defending Champion Barnum failed to make it back to State. Also new to the State Tournament are Sebeka (A) and Providence (AA)

Quarterfinal games get underway Wednesday, March 16th at the Target Center and Williams Arena. Semi-finals follow on Thursday, March 17th-Friday, March 18th. Then on Saturday, March 19th, the top teams will vie for the crown at the Target Center

For high school basketball players, coaches and fans, it’s the season of dreams. For some, it’s a time of triumph and celebration; others a time of heartache, and regret. The titles are for the taking. It’s the reason we play the game. It’s the reason we practice, go hard, battle in the paint, fight for position and possession, box-out and post-up, rebound and put-back, take her, blow past her and drive to the basket.

 The road to the big dance is paved with sacrifice. Without it, you’re sitting in the stands, wondering what if.. The theme this year is “Superstars”. There are a lot of superstars in the house.

Again, Lakeville North’s Rachel Banham is back, so is Becca Dahlman from Braham. Hill-Murray’s dynamic duo, of Tessa Cichy and Bethany Doolittle, has been making noise all season and is looking to get the job done this post season. White Bear Lake’s junior Alexis Foley is back and Eden Prairie’s “Fab Four” is also dancing. Eden Prairie is led by Jackie Johnson, senior Morgan VanRiper-Rose, Shayne Mullaney, and Aubrey Davis. But, super sub Taylor Uhl is very deadly and is instant offense coming off the bench. She is also a Star. Junior Alicia Boe leads Sebeka, with 20 points and 5.5 assists. Stephanie Davison averages 15 points per game, and senior Ellen Edison adds 14 points per game to lead Maple Grove. Delasalle’s Tyseanna Johnson & Mariah Adanene, Red Wing’s Tesha Buck, Caledonia’s Amber Sorenson, Sauk Centre’s Kali Peschel are also major impact players for their teams. And Finally Hopkins, the number one seed in class 4A has Brianna Williams, Sydney Coffey and Nia Coffey leading the Royals’ attack.

gPrep will be there to cover all the exciting matchups at the 2011 Minnesota State Girls High School Basketball Tournament. So, let the games begin.
The excitement is building as the ballers prepare to step onto the court. One thing’s for sure, the 2011 Minnesota State Girls Basketball Tournament promises to be one for the record book.


That’s My Two Cents







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