In 2021, the Minnesota State High School League approved the use of a 35-second shot clock for boys' and girls' basketball, beginning in the 2023-24 season.
One league is moving the timeline up a year.
Lake Conference schools voted Wednesday to approve the use of a shot clock in conference games beginning this season. The shot clock will be used only in regular-season games between conference teams. The schools that make up the Lake Conference are Buffalo, Eden Prairie, Edina, Hopkins, Minnetonka, St. Michael-Albertville and Wayzata.
The MSHSL allows shot clocks to be used if both teams agree before their game. The shot clock will not be used in the postseason.
Most league coaches expressed approval of the move.
"Shot clock passed for this season, boys and girls!" texted Buffalo girls' coach Barb Metcalf, a longtime proponent of the shot clock.
Eden Prairie girls' coach Ellen Wiese was thrilled by the move, saying it prepares players for college basketball, rewards defense and makes for a better game.
"I believe it improves the tempo and quality of play significantly," she said.
Noting that Lake Conference games are already played a fast pace, Wiese expects an initial adjustment period while teams get used to playing with a shot clock.
"It will take some getting used to, so initially games might get a little sloppy," she said. "Eventually, though, the games will be high-paced and spectator-friendly."
Some coaches indicated concern about inconsistency because nonconference and postseason games won't include shot clocks. Eden Prairie boys' coach David Flom said that issue was overridden because there's worth in the chance to acclimate to the shot clock.
"I'm excited that we get to use the shot clock this year," he said. "Understandably, there were some concerns about using [it] during the regular season but not in the playoffs, but I like that we get used to it this year. I like it most simply because of end-of-game situations."
Not all league coaches voted in favor of the change. Hopkins coach Ken Novak Jr. is a shot-clock supporter but would have preferred to wait until its broad introduction next season.
"I would rather not have used it this year," said Novak, who has 925 career victories, most among active boys' coaches and fourth-most in state history.
"I don't think it's smart to have different rules than the [state] tournament. [Players] learn different habits."