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Posted On: 10/23/18 2:50 PM
The IMAC is home to two of the best Class AA programs in the state in Minnehaha and Breck. Both consistently win near 20 games a season and pump up top-notch talent. That is no different this year as Minnehaha heads into the season the heavy favorite to not only win the conference but also another state title. Breck has one of the best seniors in the state in David Roddy and the conference as a whole looks like it’ll be strong as many teams were forced to rely on underclassmen a year ago.
Favorite: Minnehaha Academy
The two-time state champion isn’t going anywhere for a while as the Redhawks are loaded. Jalen Suggs is one of the best players in the entire country and can take over a game like few in the state are capable. As long as he’s on the floor, Minnehaha will have a chance to win. Kaden Johnson is a multi-year starting guard who excels off the ball and is one of the best defenders in the state. The Redhawks are young up front but it’s hard to find a more talented duo at the Class AA level than Chet Holmgren and Prince Aligbe. Holmgren is a 7-foot sophomore who moves like a guard and Aligbe is a 6-foot-5 specimen who looks like an upperclassman despite being just a freshman. Both guys are Division I prospects and should be in line to put up big numbers this winter.
Breck figures to be one of the top teams in Class AA this winter and the big reason why is senior forward David Roddy. The 6-foot-5 big man averaged 25 points and 12 boards as a junior and could be a Mr. Basketball contender. He’s joined up front by Joey Ganley who averaged 12 points per game in a secondary role. Jaren Morton earned big minutes as a freshman last season and could take a big step forward this winter.
Should Compete: Providence Academy, Blake
Providence Academy in that next tier in conference last year and should compete for the best of the rest in the league again this winter. Mark Richelsen averaged 13.4 points per game as a junior and Logan Blomberg averaged 12.5 a night. Those two give the Lions a very good one-two punch in the paint. Dylan Servais returns on the perimeter to give the team a third double-figure scorer.
Blake had four double figure scorers a year ago and return all four. It starts with sophomore guard Gabe Ganz who averaged 16 a night last year. He’s a dynamic scorer who could put up huge numbers with additional size, strength and experience. He’s joined by stud sophomores in Jasper Liu who averaged 12.5 points per game and Robert Grace IV who averaged 12 per games. Senior forward Eli Kilpatrick gives the team an interior presence.
Rebuilding: St. Paul Academy, Mounds Park Academy
Mounds Park struggled in conference play last season, winning just two games. Yahya Madar averaged 16 points per game as a junior and gives the team a piece to build around though. St. Paul Academy won 16 games overall but just twice in conference play. Ryan Moore is back after averaging 13 points per game as a junior. He gives the team a solid interior presence in a league full of quality big men. Adam Holod saw extensive minutes as a freshman and will be expected to take on a bigger role this winter.
18-19 Conference Predictions
IMAC All Conference
Jalen Suggs, Jr., Minnehaha (POY)
David Roddy, Sr., Breck
Chet Holmgren, Soph., Minnehaha
Gabe Ganz, Soph., Blake
Mark Richelsen, Sr., Providence Academy
Kaden Johnson, Sr., Minnehaha
Joey Ganley, Sr., Breck
Prince Aligbe, Fr., Minnehaha
Logan Blomberg, Sr., Providence Academy
Jasper Liu, Soph., Blake
Jaren Morton, Soph., Breck
Robert Grace IV, Soph., Blake
Yahya Madar, Sr., Mounds Park Academy
Ryan Moore, Sr., St. Paul Academy
Dylan Servais, Sr., Providence Academy