DeLaSalle Sets Tone Early in State Tournament Win
Playing in their first state boys basketball tournament since 1985, the Bemidji Lumberjacks won the opening tap against top-seed Minneapolis DeLaSalle and hit a three-pointer 12 seconds into the game. Two minutes and seven seconds later, DeLaSalle grabbed the lead and sailed on to a 76-45 quarterfinal victory at Williams Arena at the University of Minnesota.
The Islanders built a double-digit lead about six-and-a-minutes into the game at 19-9 and shot 57-percent in the first half. They seemed to have more success on three-pointers than slam dunk attempts. DeLaSalle connect on 8-of-12 three's in the first half and 13-of-21 for the game for 62-percent. Unofficially they were 2-for-5 on slam dunks.
DeLaSalle led 40-19 at halftime and put the game into running time in the second half with a 35-point lead. Bemidji shot pretty well at 43-percent overall for the game, but couldn't get free of the tight man-for-man defense to free up three-point shots. The Lumberjacks average ten triples per game but only attempted one in the first half. They ended up 5-for-12 for the game.
Bemidji also couldn't overcome 19 turnovers that led to DeLaSalle outscoring them 15-6 in points off turnovers. The Islanders also outscored the Lumberjacks in second chance points 12-0 and points in the paint 16-10.
Four players reached double figures for No. 1 ranked DeLaSalle. Jamison Battle, who will play college basketball at George Washington, led with 21 points. Tyrell Terry, a three-year starter who is committed to Stanford, had 15 points and nine assists. Jalen Travis and Kameron Givens each scored ten. Travis led the Islanders with seven rebounds.
The No. 10-rated Lumberjacks had three players with ten points apiece, Ben Hess, Spencer Konecne and Colten Jensen.
DeLaSalle(25-5) advances to the Class AAA semifinals Thursday, March 21 at Target Center at 12 pm with coverage on KDHL AM 920 and the KDHL app. The Islanders won six straight state titles from 2012 through 2017 and took third place last year.
Bemidji (23-5) plays in the consolation round Thursday at Concordia-St. Paul.