North Woods senior guard Cade Goggleye is accustomed to dazzling the crowd. He added himself to the mix Friday.
Goggleye made a fadeaway three-pointer from behind the side of the backboard in the corner with 1.5 seconds left, giving No. 6-ranked North Woods a 57-55 victory over No. 8 Ada-Borup in the Class 1A semifinals at Target Center.
The Grizzlies (29-2) will be playing for the state title for the third consecutive year; they were the runner-up the past two years.
"That was crazy," said Goggleye, who finished with 18 points, six assists and three steals. "I wowed myself."
Goggleye was blanketed by Cougars senior guard Jared Brainard on the last-second shot.
"We had him pinned in the corner, and I had my hands up," said Brainard, who had 15 points and six assists. "He rose up and hit a tough shot. Cade is a great player."
Two years ago, Goggleye hit a half-court shot at the buzzer that gave the Grizzlies a 54-51 victory over Central Minnesota Christian in the quarterfinals of the state tournament at Williams Arena.
"He put up another shot we're all going to remember,'' North Woods coach Will Kleppe said.
The Cougars (29-2) took a 55-54 lead on Brainard's three-point play with 32 seconds left after a steal and outlet pass by junior guard Verdis Barber off a Goggleye turnover.
"I knew I had to make up for that play," Goggleye said. "I made up for it at the end of the game."
Brainard had a chance to increase the Cougars' lead but missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 16.9 seconds left.
Junior forward Trevor Morrison's eighth offensive rebound with 3.7 seconds left kept the Grizzlies' hopes alive for Goggleye's game-winner. Morrison finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds.
"You have to work hard and get position," Morrison said. "I always attack the basket."
His workmanlike performance offset Ada-Borup big man Mason Miller. The 6-8 junior center had 18 points, five rebounds and four blocked shots.
"That was an amazing, incredible shot," Miller said of Goggleye. "Sometimes it comes down to dumb luck."