Class 2A STORY LINES

1. Record is deceiving

Minneapolis North enters quarterfinal play 21-9, but is still ranked No. 2 by Minnesota Basketball News. Why, you ask? Polars coach Larry McKenzie is a firm believer in you get better by playing better competition, win or lose. All nine losses the Polars have suffered have been to schools that have either won state championships or are in the state tournament this year. McKenzie won his 400th career game this season and has won six state championships, the last coming with Minneapolis North in 2017.

2. The king of swat

Minnehaha Academy’s Chet Holmgren is a slender 7-foot sophomore forward. The Division I recruit, currently ranked No. 45 in the Class of 2021 by Rivals.com, provides more than just an offensive presence (18.3 points per game) for the Redhawks (26-2). He is a rim protector, with 157 blocked shots (5.6 a game) on the season. The state’s season record of 267 is held by Monticello’s Joel Przybilla.

3. Perham returns

The No. 3-rated Yellowjackets (29-1) are 85-3 over the past three seasons, but will be making their first state tournament appearance since 2013. They lost to Breckenridge in the Section 8 finals each of the previous two years. Coach Dave Cresap’s squad boasts plenty of experience, with seven seniors and seven juniors on the roster. Cresap owns a career record of 580-276.

RON HAGGSTROM