Boys Basketball Class AAA Semifinals: Minnehaha Academy 79, DeLaSalle 58
Posted: Thursday, April 8, 2021 - 4:23 PM
Minnehaha Academy won three consecutive Class AA boys basketball championships from 2017-19. Prior to the 2019-20 season, the Minneapolis-based school opted to move up an enrollment level to compete in Class AAA. While the Redhawks qualified for the tournament last season, it wasn’t played because of the COVID-19 global outbreak. Minnehaha Academy is getting the chance during this modified season and the Redhawks aren’t letting the opportunity slip away.
Minnehaha Academy (19-1), the No. 9-ranked boys basketball team in the country, earned a berth in the Class AAA championship game following a 79-58 victory over longtime Class AAA power DeLaSalle in the semifinals of the Minnesota State High School League’s Boys Basketball State Tournament on Thursday, April 8 at Target Center in downtown Minneapolis. Chet Holmgren, a 7-foot-1 center and rated the top senior recruit in the country, powered the Redhawks with 25 points and 16 rebounds before leaving the game with 4:42 remaining in regulation. Junior guard Donovan Smith added 15 points for the Redhawks.
The large margin of victory continued Minnehaha Academy’s season-long dominance over Minnesota opponents. The slimmest margin of victory this season for the Redhawks was seven points, and that occurred just once, to Class AAAA power Wayzata during the regular season. Minnehaha Academy’s only loss this season was a 73-53 setback to IMG Academy of Bradenton, FL, which is ranked No. 5 nationally.
DeLaSalle (15-6), the Class AAA champion in 2019 and seven other seasons, was led by sophomore guard Nasir Whitlock with 16 points. Senior guard Cade Haskins chipped in 14.
Minnehaha Academy doubled up DeLaSalle in the first half for a 38-19 lead at the break. Holmgren was a force in the low post with 19 points and 10 rebounds, and he also had a three-pointer. Junior guard Donovan Smith added 15 for the Redhawks.