This year, the call went Lakeville North's way.
With three seconds left in overtime and the score tied 66-66, sophomore guard Lauren Jensen corralled a defensive rebound and turned to head up court. She ran into two Maple Grove players, and as she tried to split them, a whistle was blown and a foul called on Maple Grove.
The clock read 0.3 seconds.
Jensen went to the line and made both free throws, giving the Panthers a 68-66 overtime victory Wednesday in the Class 4A quarterfinals at Target Center.
"Free throws? That's what you practice all the time at the end of a workout. I had confidence in myself," Jensen said. "Don't get me wrong, it was nerve-racking, especially because I had time to think."
Maple Grove coach Mark Cook had no issue with the call despite its unfortunate timing.
"I thought the officials called a really good game," he said. "That one call wasn't a make-or-break situation. It was everything that led up to that."
The frenetic final seconds capped a wildly entertaining game in which Maple Grove rallied from a five-point deficit in regulation, taking a two-point lead in the final seconds before Jensen hit a runner that sent the game to overtime.
The Crimson scored six consecutive points in the extra session, taking a 66-62 lead, before Lakeville North (25-5) battled back on a jumper by Jensen and a clutch putback by Taylor Brown that tied the score at 66.
Jensen finished with a game-high 31 points. Autumn Mlinar had 19 to lead Maple Grove (24-6).
Jensen's clutch shots provided a little salve for Lake-ville North from the 2017 state tournament. The lack of a call in the final seconds might have cost the Panthers a victory in the state semifinals over eventual champion Elk River.
"The way our season ended last year was in the back of our minds at the start of the season," Lakeville North coach Shelly Clemons said. "This is a brand-new team, but in the down moments, I could see in some of their faces, [last year] was creeping into their minds. Our girls kept plugging away and we got lucky."