Boys basketball playoffs kick into high gear this week

If it seems like the section playoffs for boys basketball are starting early this year, you’re right. Because of a one-year schedule change, boys basketball and girls basketball have traded places on the calendar.

Some boys hoops section tournaments started last week but the Bulletin-area squads open the post-season this week. Here’s a look at where each team stands.

Mounds View

The Mustangs put together their best regular season in 10 years by going 21-5. The last time Mounds View had a better regular-season record was in 2004 when it went 24-2.

This year’s team is seeded second in Section 4AAAA and opens the post-season at home on Wednesday against seventh-seeded Mahtomedi (12-14). The Zephyrs are members of the Classic Suburban Conference.

Mounds View enters the playoffs with a full head of steam after closing out the regular season by winning its final six games. The Mustangs also rattled off 11 straight wins starting right after Christmas.

The Mustangs went 6-2 in the regular season against teams from Section 4AAAA. They swept fifth-seeded Stillwater and sixth-seeded White Bear Lake and split with top-seeded Woodbury and fourth-seeded Roseville. Mounds View did not play third-seeded Tartan, Mahtomedi or eighth-seeded North St. Paul.

Mounds View is searching for its first trip to the state tournament since the 2005 squad led by Travis Busch finished third.

The four quarterfinals winners on Wednesday advance to the semifinals on Saturday at East Ridge High School. Game times on Saturday are 5:30 and 7:30 p.m.

Irondale

Playoff victories have been hard to come by for the Knights over the last 10 years. Since 2004, Irondale has won just one post-season game and that came in 2011.

Adding to that total will not be an easy task this year as Irondale is the No. 8 seed in Section 5AAAA and must play top-seeded Champlin Park in the quarterfinals on Thursday.

Irondale has just two victories to its credit this season. The first came on Dec. 17 at St. Louis Park and the other was a road victory at Coon Rapids on Jan. 11. Since the Coon Rapids win, the Knights have lost 14 in a row.

In contrast, Champlin lost just twice all season, once to Hopkins and once to Osseo, which in the No. 2 seed in the section. At one point, the Rebels had won 16 straight games.

The four quarterfinals winners from Thursday move on to the semifinals on March 4 at Rogers High School. The section title game is March at 7 at p.m. at Rogers.

St. Anthony Village

Picking up Ws was also difficult for the Huskies, who won just five times this season. St. Anthony goes after No. 6 on Thursday but faces an uphill climb in that endeavor.

Awaiting the Huskies is Section 3AAA’s top-seeded team DeLaSalle and Stanford-bound Reid Travis. The Islanders faced St. Anthony on Jan. 30 in a Tri-Metro Conference game and came away with a 57-point win.

St. Anthony picked up victory No. 5 on Feb. 18 with a 76-44 whipping of Mounds Park Academy. The Huskies’ other wins this season came against St. Paul Harding, Concordia Academy, St. Agnes and Cristo Rey Jesuit.

Following the quarterfinals, the section playoffs continue with the semifinals on March 4 and the championship game on March 7. Both rounds are played at Coon Rapids High School.

Brian Meyers can be reached at bmeyers@lillienews.com.

Section 4AAAA boys basketball playoffs

Seed, record in parentheses
Quarterfinals, Feb. 26, 7 p.m.

Game 1 - North St. Paul (8, 10-16) at Woodbury (1, 18-8)
Game 2 - Stillwater (5, 12-14) at Roseville (4, 13-13)
Game 3 - White Bear Lake (6, 11-15) at Tartan (3, 19-6)
Game 4 - Mahtomedi (7, 12-14) at Mounds View (2, 21-5)
Semifinals, March 1 at East Ridge High School
Game 5 - Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 5:30 p.m.
Game 6 - Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 7:30 p.m.

Championship game, March 5, 7 p.m. at East Ridge High School
Game 7 - Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner

Section 5AAAA boys basketball playoffs

Seed, record in parentheses
Quarterfinals, Feb. 27, 7 p.m.

Game 1 - Irondale (8, 2-24) at Champlin Park (1, 22-2)
Game 2 - Centennial (5, 12-12) at Park Center (4, 13-12)
Game 3 - Robbinsdale Cooper (6, 9-15) at Maple Grove (3, 17-8)
Game 4 - Wayzata (7, 8-17) at Osseo (2, 18-7)

Semifinals, March 4 at Rogers High School
Game 5 - Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 6 p.m.
Game 6 - Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 8 p.m.

Championship game, March 7, 7 p.m. at Rogers High School
Game 7 - Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner

Section 3AAA boys basketball playoffs

Seed, record in parentheses
Quarterfinals, Feb. 27, 7 p.m.

Game 1 - St. Anthony Village (8, 5-21) at DeLaSalle (1, 20-3)
Game 2 - Spring Lake Park (5, 13-13) at Fridley (4, 15-7)
Game 3 - St. Paul Como Park (6, 9-14) at Columbia Heights (3, 18-6)
Game 4 - Minneapolis Patrick Henry (7, 8-14) at Totino-Grace (2, 20-5)

Semifinals, March 4 at Coon Rapids High School
Game 5 - Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 6 p.m.
Game 6 - Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 8 p.m.

Championship game, March 7, 7 p.m. at Coon Rapids High School
Game 7 - Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner

 

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