SUNDAY FATHER’S DAY SIX PACK
The Summer Jam wrapped up on Father’s Day. I spent my time on court 8 at Shakopee—-the championship court for the older division girls. For the past four contested Summer Jams (none in 2020 due to the virus) the top two age categories have been locked up by All Iowa Attack. The EYBL program has won in 2019, 2021, 2022, and now continues the trend with 2023. But wait…. there is more. AIA has added to their trophy haul. They need a moving van to transport all the hardware back to Ames. This year they took five of the eight championships in the top age divisions. This has not been done by any program before. They did not field a team at the 15u division, but added hardware in the 14u, 13u, and 11u brackets for an impressive 62.5% of the top spots. On top of that AIA also took the second level 17u division. They accomplished this feat (at least in the two 17u and 16u divisions) by typical Attack fashion: let it rain 3s. And did it pour. In the Diamond Lake (top 17) bracket they put running time on the hosts thanks to 15 3s. The Attack are known for the catch and shoot. They also have weapons everywhere to spread the floor—the prototypical universal player. In the Diamond Lake game, they had eight players attempt 3s, with seven connecting. To make it even more emphatic—75% of their team’s shot attempts came from beyond the arc.
But this Attack method is not solely controlled and owned by Attack. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and as above, so below. I suppose we can credit Steph Curry more than any program for the “revolution” in scoring. Five of the six winners on Sunday scored more 3s than their opponents. The winners also shot an eyepopping 33% or better in five of the six games. Indeed, the winners in the last four games shot 50% or better. The winners also could spread the floor better. They averaged 5.3 players that connected at least once. The losers had 3.3 connect. That means two more offensive threats need to be tracked and defended. My adage is the 3 is always open. Somewhere there is someone on the 3 point line not being defended. The funny thing is most of these teams know each other. There are no real surprises. So, the mystery to me is how do people/teams lose track of the situation or known deep threats. One slip up and you are down three more points. And it is not like some of these kids are NOT being guarded. But give a player an inch and they will take it. Sometimes that was all it took.
GAME 1: LOON LAKE-15/2: MN Starks 15u 58, North Tartan 15u SE 48
GAME 2: SILVER LAKE-15/1: Sanford Sports 15u Black 65, WI Playground Elite 15u Purple 62 3 OT
GAME 3: GOLDEN LAKE-16/1: All Iowa Attack 10th EYBL 55, MN Stars 2025 3SSB 50
GAME 4: GEM LAKE-17/3: Triton Girls 17u 71, So MN Fury 2024 35
GAME 5: HIDDEN LAKE-17/2: All Iowa Attack 11th Nike Red 64, MN Starks 17u 57
GAME 6: DIAMOND LAKE- 17/1: All Iowa Attack 11th EYBL 62, North Tartan 17u EYBL 43
Just so you know All Iowa Attack also took titles at
QUARTZ LAKE-14/1: 53-41 over Impact 2027 Bankston
COPPER LAKE-13/1: 51-38 over MN Fury 2028 Blue
UNICORN LAKE-11/1 61-46 over United 5th Haskell
Only championship game they were involved with a second place finish:
JEKYLL LAKE-12/1 35-22 loss to North Tartan 12u Nike
Looking at the six Sunday games the breakdown by state
South Dakota 1-0
Minnesota 1-5—–and a MN team had to win when it was MN v MN
A word about the field….in the past the calendar was better situated for the Summer Jam. Teams from around the country used it for a tune up for the D1 eyeballs in July. Now with more events in springtime the warmup portion for July is already baked into the calendar. Also the amount of Wisconsin teams seemed to be down somewhat—no Wisconsin Flight. They have shifted over from UAA to Nike now. That would have made an even more impactful Sunday.
A CLOSER LOOK AT THE 3S
|MN Starks 15u||23||9||39||53.5||5||4|
|North Tartan 15u SE||14||3||21||30.4||4||2|
|Sanford Sports 15u Black||28||7||25||43.8||7||5|
|WI Playground Elite 15u Purple||23||5||21||31.1||5||4|
|All Iowa Attack 10th EYBL||19||11||58||48.7||6||5|
|MN Stars 2025 3SSB||19||4||21||50.0||5||3|
|Triton Girls 17u||14||8||57||25.0||6||5|
|So MN Fury 2024||23||7||30||50.0||6||5|
|All Iowa Attack 11th Nike Red||20||10||50||40.8||6||6|
|MN Starks 17u||25||12||48||56.8||7||3|
|All Iowa Attack 11th EYBL||30||15||50||75.0||8||7|
|North Tartan 17u EYBL||15||4||27||32.6||6||3|
Winners attempted 2.5 more 3s, made 4.2 more 3s; shot 17.5 better.
Outstanding 3s lead to outstanding pp100s. After a bottoming out in the MN State AAU title games with teams struggling to escape the 70s, the pp100s blossomed to the century mark. Five of the champs crossed that line with the best going to Triton with a 120.3. All three All Iowa Attack teams were north of 100 with the 11th EYBL team just shy of Triton at 119.2. Their 11 Nike Red sisters were not too far off at 112.3. The sophs came in at 107.8. MN Starks 15u were the fifth 100+ team at 101.8. but there were six teams over 100…..
The “best” game if you are measuring pp100s of the losing teams was the Hidden Lake championship where MN Starks 17u had a 101.8 in the loss. More on why MN Starks popped in that game below. MN Stars 2025 just missed out with a 98 in their loss to AIA 10th EYBL. The “best” game if you are measuring pp100 separation (and flat out last second drama) has to be game two in the Silver Lake triple overtime game. At 65-62 it doesn’t get much closer. It took an extra six minutes (two minutes of overtime) to get a team over the top. WI Playground did their best to prolong the game. They tied it up on their second to last possession to make it 51 all. Sadie Kubacki scored at the buzzer in overtime one to make it 55 all. Audrey Sellinger scored on an out of bounds play with 2 ticks to go in overtime two to tie it at 57. Sanford scored on possessions two, three and four of the final overtime to create separation. Still Playground battled cutting a six point deficit back to 3 with a 3 with 17 seconds left. Sanford made the free throws in the glaring light when it mattered to preserve the win.
The only team that failed to get to the 80s was So MN Fury, who on Friday rolled with a 101.5 pp100. The Fury was without one player on Sunday, and their pp100 dropped to 60.3. After putting running time on their opponent Friday, they had a dose of that medicine on Sunday.
The surprise was North Tartan EYBL had running time placed on them in the final. True they were missing Aaliyah Crump who was in Mexico with the 16U national team. NT was also missing Myah Monahan who injured her knee on Thursday. Even though they had RT placed on them their pp100 was 82.7, that is just 0.4 less than their total in the MN State AAU championship win over MN Suns.
31 CLUB (OR 28 CLUB) MEMBERSHIPS:
Which leads us to the 31 Club—-or, because the summer games are four minutes shorter than the high school season, the 28 Club. Using that more calibrated dividing line we had five players crack the code. Once again, the 3s loomed large in this breakdown. There was one player that did double duty on the day: Chloe Johnson of MN Starks played with both the 15u & 17u title games, going 1-1 in titles. You would think pulling a double shift would cause a lowering of scoring, especially considering you are going against bigger, stronger, faster players in the second contest. Johnson thrived in that environment. She did not need to lower her target to reach the modified “28” club. She blew past that and made the even more exclusive 41 Club in game two against All Iowa Attack Nike Red. She reached 43 using that measure (translation into the 36 minute realm would result in a score of 57.78). Now this is all fine and good, but keep in mind that Chloe Johnson (Duluth Marshall) is not going to be a senior (2024) or a soph (2026/15u) but is only going to be in grade 8 (2028) in the fall. At close to 6-0, if not taller, she runs the show. She sees the floor and is not exclusively a 3 point shooter. In the AIA game she was 6/11 on set up passes with 26.33 touches per turnover. She had the same 6/11 ratio in the eye opener. She already was being highly tracked. With 8/11 (I said eight for eleven—EIGHT) shooting from 3s in the Attack game (with defense closely monitoring her movements) that scrutiny will become much more intensified.
The other four players that got the “golden ticket” were
Ashlynn Koupal (Wagner, SD) from Sanford Sports 15u Black (2026)
Trista Fayta (Green Bay Notre Dame) from Triton girls 17u (2024)
Gracie Grzesk (Green Bay Notre Dame) from Triton girls 17u (2024)
Jordan Spieser (Lutheran HS, near St. Louis MO) from All IA Attack 11th EYBL (2025)
A word about Triton—no it is not Triton high school in Minnesota (Dodge Center area), but Green Bay Notre Dame—the Tritons. Fayta had a solid 35 score for the 31 club with a 242.8 pp100, the best of the day. She was 4/5 on 3s and will be headed to Illinois State when her high school days are over. Teammate Gracie Grzesk also made the 28 club, the only teammate pairing that did—-on the nose with a 131.2 pp100. She is headed to Wisconsin (Madison) post high school. Triton was made up exclusively of GBND players.