State Boys Basketball: Rangers stymie Cathedral to advance to finals
MINNEAPOLIS--This season marks the 21st time Crosby-Ironton has played in the state tournament. On Friday, the No. 3 seeded Rangers hit blackjack as they upset No. 2 seeded St. Cloud Cathedral 53-42 in the Class 2A semifinals at Target Center. Th...
MINNEAPOLIS-This season marks the 21st time Crosby-Ironton has played in the state tournament.
On Friday, the No. 3 seeded Rangers hit blackjack as they upset No. 2 seeded St. Cloud Cathedral 53-42 in the Class 2A semifinals at Target Center.
The victory advances the Rangers to the program's sixth state title game. Could that be the lucky number for C-I, which is 0-5 in its five title matches?
"Coach said that it didn't matter who won the game before us it's going to come down to what we do," said senior center Noah Gindorff. "We just need to take care of ourselves. If we keep playing team basketball, like we've done all year, I think we'll be in good shape."
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Crosby-Ironton 53, Cathedral 42
- Key: C-I held Cathedral to 32-percent shooting
- Overall: CI 30-2, SCC 27-5
- Next: Crosby-Ironton vs. Minnehaha Academy in Class 2A state championship at Target Center, Minneapolis 1 p.m. Saturday; Cathedral vs. Annandale in Class 2A third-place game at Concordia College noon Saturday
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The Rangers did it with a stifling defense that held Cathedral to 32.1 percent shooting from the field and just 20 percent (5-of-25) from 3-point. C-I forced five Cathedral turnovers and scored 10 points on those and outrebounded the Crusaders 35-31. Gindorff led the way with 13 boards to go with a game-high 19 points, three blocks and one assist.
"I couldn't have been more happy on the defensive end with our effort, but looking at the numbers it wasn't our night shooting the ball," said Cathedral head coach Matt Meyer. "We got some open looks, we just couldn't knock them down tonight.
"Their length and their size really gives us problems. It made it difficult on our shooters when there's always a hand up on them. Crosby, that matchup zone was very hard for us to figure out."
A 9-0 run to start the second half pushed C-I's lead to 36-22. During the run Trey Jacobs became the third member of this year's Rangers to surpass 1,000 points. He joined Noah Gindorff and Jack Silgen on the list of milestone scorers.
"It feels pretty amazing," Jacobs said about reaching 1,000 at the state tournament. "It doesn't seem real. I'm just glad I have amazing teammates that got me there and the coach helped me get there."
Jacobs finished with 17 points and four rebounds. He needed eight to reach the mark.
Cathedral answered with a 5-0 run, highlighted by Michael Schaefer's 3-pointer. Jacobs answered with three free throws to build C-I's lead back to 41-29 with a little more than 10 minutes left.
Keaton LeClaire waited until 6:21 to make his first basket, but it was a 3-pointer to cut C-I's lead to 41-34. It was part of another Cathedral 5-0 run, which also featured a Michael Schaefer dunk to help him reach 1,000 for his career.
"It was a play that I hoped would help our team, a momentum play," said Schaefer. "It happened to be my 1,000 point. It's a great accomplishment that I'm proud of, but at the end of the day, I don't know if that 1,000 point feels so great."
Gindorff was able to build C-I's lead back to 10 with an old-fashioned 3-point play off an offensive rebound.
From there it was all about making free throws and C-I dropped in 16-of-23 in the second half and finished shooting 72 percent for the game.
The first half featured eight lead changes and one tie before the Rangers took control on a Jacobs' breakaway. Gindorff, who led C-I with 11 first-half points, drained two free throws. Jonathan Jacobs, who was 2-for-2 from the field in the first half, received a quick pass from Gindorff and hit a layup for a 20-16 Ranger edge.
Then after a Cathedral free throw, Gindorff made the last five points of the half, including a 3-pointer for a 25-17 halftime score.
For the second-straight game, C-I's match-up zone defense caused headaches. Cathedral shot just 25 percent (6-of-24) from the field and attempted just four free throws.
"We knew they had those two big postmen and those were going to be their main scorers," said Gindorff. "We just had to work together and make it a full five-man effort just to contain those two and everyone did great. We talked pretty well all night on defense and executed."
C-I shot 47.6 percent, including 3-of-7 from 3-point, a marked improvement after going 1-8 in the quarterfinal against Breckenridge.
C-I outrebounded Cathedral 17-13 and had just three turnovers, another improvement from Wednesday.
"Our team doesn't really have a true point guard, I guess," said senior Jack Silgen, who finished with 13 points, eight rebounds and two assists. "I don't know how many of you would consider me that so that's always how teams think they're going to get us on. That pressure and forced turnovers. That's always an emphasis of ours to take care of the ball. Once we get into the half court we do a great job."
St. Cloud Cathedral 17 25-42
Crosby-Ironton 25 28-53
ST. CLOUD CATHEDRAL
Keaton LeClaire 3 Jackson Baustian Jangula 10, Mitchell Plombon 14, Michael Schaefer 15. FG 17-53 (32.1 percent), FT 3-5 (60 percent). 3-point 5-25 (20 percent).
Jack Silgen 13, Trey Jacobs 17, Jonathan Jacobson 4, Noah Gindorff 19. FG 16-40 (40 percent), FT 18-25 (72 percent). 3-point 3-11 (27.3 percent).