There were plenty of big games tonight but only 2 that I know of where #1 took on #2.
Benilde-St. Margaret boys at Spring Lake Park
The first was the Benilde-St. Margaret boys at Spring Lake Park. The host Panthers led 40-37 at the half and led most of the 2nd half. But Benilde rallied down the stretch and Sanjay Lumpkin hit the game winner with 2.6 seconds remaining. The final was Benilde 67 Spring Lake Park 65. Benilde takes a one game lead over Park in the race for the North Suburban Conference title. For Lumpkin, those were his 24th and 25th points, while Isaiah Zierden and Isaiah Gray added 17 and 13 points, respectively. Sean Scott scored 36 points for Park.
Winona State men at St. Cloud State
The second 1 vs. 2 match-up came in the Northern Sun, between the 1st place Winona State men and 2nd place St. Cloud State, at St. Cloud. Winona shot 55 percent in beating the Huskies 84-74. Winona is now 15-1 in the NSIC and 20-2 overall, and this is the 8th straight year the Warriors have won 20 games.
St. Cloud led 37-34 at the half, but Winona opened the 2nd half on a 17-4 run to take a 10-point lead at 15:07. The largest lead was at 71-55 at 7:11, and the Huskies pushed back to within 4 at 71-67 at 3:57, but that was as close as they got.
Taylor Cameron and Clayton Vette scored 21 points each for Winona, while Cameron added 6 rebounds and 7 assists. Shaun Jensen came up big for the Huskies with 24 points, 6 boards and 8 assists.
Player of the Day
You wouldn't expect Nikola Pekovic of the Minnesota Timberwolves to get written up in this spot, but there it is. Minnesota 108 New Jersey 105. Pekovic 27 points, 11 rebounds. Go figure.
Coach of the Day
Mike Leaf, Winona State. How does he do it? Players come and players go. GREAT players go. And Mike and his Warriors keep on winning. They've now quietly worked their way back up to a #4 national ranking.