MINNEAPOLIS SOUTHWEST 66, ST. PAUL HIGHLAND PARK 24
Wednesday night does not give one a lot of options. There were only three games to pick from. I opted for a City vs. City match up. It was Minneapolis over St. Paul with the host Lakers of Southwest putting running time on the visiting Scots from Highland Park. The Lakers were hitting on all cylinders in the first half with 56% shooting from the 2 point range combined with four consecutive 3s to really establish distance turning a 6-2 contest into an 18-4 beginning of a route. Virginia Johnson connected on three straight possessions for 3 and then Sinae Hill kept the string going on the fourth possession with another. By the 7:16 mark of the first half SW had enough in the tank to win.
Both starters and reserves scored 33 points for the Lakers. The bench did have a pp100 advantage of 97.1 to 94.3. That balance was a key aspect for SW with four players scoring between nine and eleven points. The bench also had more touches at 53%.
The second half inevitably saw a cooling off with the Lakers. When a team leads 44-11 at the break it is hard to maintain the precision with the result staring them in the face. SW only was 33% in the second half from 2s and did not make a 3.
There is a new coach leading the Scots. Deb Williams, who led HP for 18 years has left the scene. Replacing her is Chris Steenberg. HP will be looking for their first victory of the year when they face Minneapolis South on Friday at home. SW is 3-1 on the year with their loss coming to Jefferson last Friday.
As for the TRENCH PLAYER—Virginia Johnson, a 5-10 guard from the class of 2023, was the impetus of the initial burst with her three straight 3s. She tied for game high scorer with 11 and her pp100 was on the money at 100. She led both teams for set up passes with 15 with a couple of nice quick-fire give and gos. She also had a game high 22 score in the 31 Club.
Jhane Green did not play for SW. She is recovering from an injury to the left leg. She was seen hitting 3s on her right leg at half.