Friday Night Top Five

High School
Minnesota

Posted On: 02/2/18 12:10 PM

Biggest games on this Friday night?  I would say there is a big game in each part of the state this evening led off by the Breckenridge/Perham rematch at Perham.

Breckenridge at Perham. On Friday night December 8th the Yellowjackets beat Breckenridge 75-70 in a road game.  Now the undefeated Perham squad is home and facing the Cowboys who have won 15 straight since that early season game.  Since the last time these teams have played the Cowboys have really only had two competitive tests blowing teams out consistently.  Perham on the other hand has faced, and defeated, Breck, Annandale, Anoka, Detroit Lakes, Esko, and others.  Perham is the deeper club where as the Cowboys rely heavily on Noah Christensen and Derek Dahlgren (they each had 27 in the previous game).  Perham has size up front in Logan Richter, size at forward in Josh Jeziorski, and a deep bunch of guards/wings that includes Jenson Beachy, Carter Cresap, Martin LaFond, and John LaFond.  Both teams are ranked in the top ten with Perham being third and Breckenridge being 10th (in Class AA).

Champlin Park at Park Center. Champlin Park is that team that people said, “get them early”. At 10-5 the Rebels are starting to find a groove having won eight of their last ten games.  Navy committed Josiah Strong is playing some of his best basketball and tonight he gets to go against his 17U teammate at Powerhouse who is of course Jarius Cook, signed with NDSU.  CP has size to throw at talented Dain Dainja up front, they have skilled shooting from Bennett Otto to try and counter Tommy Chatman, and the Rebels have toughness in Kato Sealy and Jared Walter to try and counter that of DJ Purnell and Emmanuel Tamba.  But the Pirates will be deeper in talent and experience.  A guy like Khari Broadway brings that.

Tartan at Mahtomedi. The top game in the east metro will be the Titans and Zephyrs in a Clash of the Champions if you will.  Tartan wants to prepare for their tough section by winning these top conference games where as the Zephyrs need another good conference win like the victory they had over STA.  With the Zephyrs already losing to Hastings, Tartan, and NSP, they are losing some ground.  Tartan won the last game 66-57 with Antwan Kimmons and Joseph Kearney leading the way. The Zephyrs didn’t the games from Timmy Kindquist and Jack Shay they normally do but if they can tonight and sophomore J’Vonne Handley has another strong game they have a shot at avenging their earlier loss.

Parkers Prairie at Battle Lake. The Panthers lost to Hancock early in the year but since that moment they have won 16 games in a row joining Hancock as a ranked team.  One of those wins was by 14 over Battle Lake. Since then the 10-5 Battlers have won six of eight working to get ready for this contest. Nick VanErp had an excellent game for Battle Lake the last time but this game he will need more help.  Ryan Blake and Austin Koep are a pair of quality seniors for Parkers Prairie plus they have Travis Yohnke who is like a Bull on the court.

Caledonia at Rushford-Peterson. In the second game of the season Caledonia throttled the Trojans 63-36.  There was some “doom and gloom” on the bus trip back but the Trojans have turned that into wins over Spring Grove, St Charles and others, and tonight they get their next shot at Caledonia having won 11 of 13.  The Trojans shot only 14 of 39 in the first game with 5-12 free throw shooting and 3-14 the arc.  Caledonia also won the rebound battle by nearly double.  Rushford-Peterson is led by Jacob Paulson, Payton Hahn, and Landon Skalet who are all playing better, but they may need the game of their lives to match Owen King, Noah King, and Marten Moren.