Thursday, March 25, 2010
St. Cloud Tech def. (2) Eden Prairie
By Kyle Stevens
Target Center - Minneapolis, Minn.
|St. Cloud Tech's bench erupts in celebration after the Tigers beat Eden Prairie in double overtime for a spot in the 4A title game.|
Cloud Tech 62, (2) Eden
Prairie 58 - Final/2OT
Army National Guard selects our Two Stars of the Game:
Alex Hanks (St. Cloud Tech): 22 points, 7 rebounds
Ryan Smith (Eden Prairie): 15 points, 14 rebounds
It might be something in the air inside Target Center. Maybe the powers that be should check the water. What else could explain three double-overtime games in a row?
The last of them saw St. Cloud Tech upset No. 2 seeded Eden Prairie 62-58 for a spot in Saturday night's 4A final.
When the Tigers beat Champlin Park on Wednesday, many expected a match up between No. 1 Hopkins and No. 2 Eden Prairie to be a foregone conclusion. Well, the Royals slipped past Henry Sibley, in double OT of course, but the Eagles could not shake Tech.
The first half had the Eagles controlling the Tigers and a lead that fluctuated between six and 10 points. Eden Prairie was doing exactly what they were expected to.
But the Tigers came out strong in the second half and made a game of it. And then some.
"I think we came out a little passive to start with," said Tech senior forward Alex Hanks. "We came out in the second half and just shot at it. We just went."
Neither team could manage a good look at the end of regulation or the first overtime. The final four minutes, however, was all Tech.
A defensive rebound by Hanks with 17-seconds to go iced the game for the Tigers. The cheers for Tech grew louder by the second as the student section chanted Hanks' name.
Even first year coach Mike Trewick was seen pumping his fists.
"I'm just so happy for the kids," said Trewick. "They work so hard."
The win sets up a rematch from last year's tournament, a game won by Hopkins 55-36.
The Tigers tried to slow the game down to a molasses-in-January type tempo, but the Royals were too talented. Both teams are much different this year.
"I don't know if it's in me to do that," said Trewick of the slow style of play.
If not the brake pedal, maybe the pinstripe pants they wore in warm ups could make a comeback.
"We could," said Trewick. "We still have 'em. Maybe if we could bring back (former player) Nate Wolters we'd be okay."