The Mahtomedi girls' basketball team has come into its section bracket as the top seed for two consecutive seasons.

Both times, the Zephyrs have left the tournament with a loss to DeLaSalle.

No. 2 seed DeLaSalle (19-8) defeated Mahtomedi 47-41 on Thursday to win the Class 3A, Section 4 championship game at East Ridge High School.

"I don't think it's really an upset. I think we're pretty evenly matched teams and we've been all year," Islanders coach Tanysha Scott said. "The girls just fought through it."

DeLaSalle junior forward Elaina Jones scored 24 points after coming in averaging a little more than 10 points per game. Jones said the key to defeating Mahtomedi again was pushing the tempo.

"At the end, we always know we can win," Jones said. "We got to keep believing in ourselves."

The Zephyrs (25-3) held a 21-19 lead at halftime, fueled by three three-pointers by senior guard Josie Underwood. She finished with 14 points. Teammate Emma Grothaus led her team for the game with 15 points.

"These two teams don't like each other, but we respect each other," Zephyrs coach Eric Prose said. "It's fun, it's high school, it's what it's about."

A year ago, the Islanders knocked the Zephyrs out of the section bracket with a 41-39 victory in the semifinals.

Jack White