Trojans draw tough team in Class A state boys basketball tourney
(Section 3) Ellsworth (27-3) vs. (Section 5) Sebeka (24-3):
The two-time defending champion Ellsworth Panthers are making their fourth consecutive and fifth overall appearance. The team is 51-0 in conference play and undefeated at home over the past three seasons. Junior Trevor Gruis averages a double-double with 17.3 points and 10.0 rebounds per game, and he reached 1,000 career points this year. Ellsworth enters the tournament ranked No. 6 in the final Minnesota Basketball News poll. Ranked No. 7, The Sebeka Trojans are making their debut tournament appearance. All five starters -- junior Joey Cuperus, sophomore John Clark, sophomore Cody Pulju, junior Alex Brockpahler and sophomore Ryan Sharp -- have double-digit scoring averages. Cuperus is the team's all-time leading scorer.
(Section 2) Granada-Huntley-East Chain (26-0) vs. (Section 4) Minnesota Transitions Charter School, Minneapolis (28-2):
Top-ranked Granada-Huntley-East Chain is making its second consecutive and second overall tournament appearance and looking to improve after a loss in the 2008 quarterfinals. In the first undefeated season in the team's history, the Mustangs averaged 77.0 points per game. Seniors Tim Garry and Taylor Nawrocki combine to lead the team in scoring with 18.2 and 15.3 points per game, respectively. Garry is the leading rebounder with 6.64 per game. Minnesota Transitions Charter School enters the tournament ranked No. 2 in the final Minnesota Basketball News poll. Runners-up in 2008, the Wolves are making their second consecutive and overall appearance. The school did not provide team or individual statistics.
(Section 7) Chisholm (29-1) vs. (Section 1) Bethlehem Academy (28-2):
Chisholm is making its second consecutive and 18th overall tournament appearance, having won titles in 1934, 1973, 1975 and 1991. The Bluestreaks, ranked No. 3 in the final Minnesota Basketball News poll, lost in the quarterfinals in 2008. Led by senior Taylor Skoglund with 19.6 points and 9.7 rebounds per game, the team averages 55 percent field goal shooting. The Cardinals of Bethlehem Academy are making their first appearance since 2002 and fourth overall. Ranked No. 4 in the final poll, Bethlehem Academy is a co-op that includes students from Discovery Public School of Faribault. The school did not submit team or individual statistics.
(Section 8) Cass Lake-Bena (24-6) vs. (Section 6) Ada-Borup (25-4):
Cass Lake-Bena returns for its third consecutive and fifth overall appearance. They are looking to improve on last year's third-place finish. Averaging 93.3 points per game, the Panthers are led by junior Martin Wind with 24.9 points and 10.0 assists per game. Senior Nate Howard adds 21.5 points and junior Tyler Trosen grabs 10.8 rebounds per game. Ada-Borup is making its fourth overall appearance and first since 1966 when they competed as Ada. The school did not submit team or individual statistics. Neither team was ranked in the final Minnesota Basketball News poll.
Class A Quarterfinal Schedule
Thursday, March 26
11 a.m. -- Chisholm vs. Bethlehem Academy at Williams Arena, U of M
1 p.m. -- Granada-Huntley-East Chain vs. Minnesota Transitions Charter School at Williams Arena, U of M
3 p.m. -- Cass Lake-Bena vs. Ada-Borup at Williams Arena, U of M
5 p.m. -- Ellsworth vs. Sebeka at Williams Arena, U of M