Minnehaha Academy needed to change the tempo and Redhawks coach Lance Johnson had the perfect group to turn to: his freshman guards.
Jalen Suggs, Terry Lockett and Kaden Johnson combined for 47 points as the No. 1-ranked Redhawks overcame an early eight-point deficit to pull away for a 77-63 victory over Lake City in the Class 2A quarterfinals Wednesday at Target Center.
"Jalen gets all the publicity, but the other two are really talented as well," Johnson said.
Suggs finished with a game-high 27 points and 12 rebounds. Lockett added 12 points and Johnson scored eight.
The Redhawks (24-5) haven't lost to a Class 2A team this season but Lake City wasn't intimidated. The Tigers (23-7) ran their patient, slowdown offense to perfection for the first six minutes, building a 12-4 lead.
The Redhawks then went on a 29-16 run to take a five-point lead before Tigers freshman guard Nathan Heise hit a three-pointer at the buzzer to end the first half. It was his fourth three-pointer of the half. He and junior guard Marc Kjos each finished with 18 points.
"We knew they wanted to slow it down," Suggs said. "We had to work hard to get the lead. We picked up our intensity in the second half."
That they did. The Redhawks scored the first 10 points of the half, including four from Suggs and a three-pointer by Johnson, to take a 43-31 lead. The tandem, along with Lockett, combined for 23 of the Redhawks' 33 points in the first half.
"They were the reason for us winning," Suggs said. Johnson and Lockett both made two three-pointers, all during key runs.
Redhawks junior forward JaVonni Bickham went to work on the interior as the game progressed. He finished with 19 points.
Annandale 66, Jackson County Central 61: The Cardinals (27-4) are well aware when it's Jarod Wilken time. The senior forward made nine free throws in the final 3 minutes, 7 seconds, helping Annandale rally from a five-point deficit.
"That kid always has a lot of pressure on him," Annandale coach Skip Dolan said. "Down the stretch we got on his back."
Junior forward AJ Hinz scored on a putback with 53 seconds left, giving the Cardinals a 62-61 lead. He also made two free throws to give Annandale a 59-58 lead with 2:08 left.
Wilken had 18 points and 10 rebounds. Hinz added 12 points and 15 rebounds. The tandem scored the Cardinals' final 14 points.
"It was nice to come back, and take them out," Wilken said.
The Huskies (26-5) defeated Annandale 64-46 in the semifinals a year ago.
"We knew it was going to be a gut check. We've done well in our gut check games," Wilken said.
Huskies senior guard Jacob Christopher finished with a 33 points. He was 10-for-17 from the floor and 10-for-11 from the free-throw line.
St. Cloud Cathedral 70, New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva 59 (OT): Michael Schaefer and Mitchell Plombon took turns helping the Crusaders overcome the Panthers in overtime at Williams Arena.
The pair of 6-6 juniors scored 38 of the Crusaders' 43 points in the second half and overtime as they combined for 58 points and 22 rebounds.
Schaefer finished with 33 points and 15 rebounds, while Plombon had 25 points and seven rebounds.
"I can't say enough about those two guys," Crusaders coach Matt Meyer said. "They took over. We got an outstanding effort against a very good team."
The Crusaders (27-4), who led by five points at halftime, opened a 10-point advantage in the first five minutes of the second half. But the Panthers (28-3) battled back and managed to take a one-point lead with 6:31 left.
The Crusaders made three free throws in the final 18 seconds of regulation to take a 54-51 lead, but Benji Lundberg's three-pointer at the buzzer tied the score and forced OT.
Schaefer and Plombon combined for 12 of the Crusaders' 16 points in the extra session.
Lundberg scored 18 points and Oakley Baker 16 for the Panthers, and Tyler Raimann had 13 points and 13 rebounds.
Crosby-Ironton 64, Breckenridge 50: After trailing much of the game and falling behind by 16 points in the second half, the Cowboys narrowed the margin to seven behind hot three-point shooting.
But Crosby-Ironton coach David Galovich kept his team calm, calling timeouts to stop Breckenridge's momentum. His plan appeared to have its desired effect and No. 3 Crosby-Ironton (29-2) prevailed.
"Games this late in March are never going to be perfect," Galovich said. "[Breckenridge] applied great pressure, and there's no question their plan was to wear us down."
The Rangers' Trey Jacobs made 10 of 13 shots from the floor and led his team with 26 points. The Rangers shot 68.4 percent for the game, the Cowboys 30.6 percent.
Senior Noah Gindorff led the Rangers with 14 rebounds, including 10 in the first half. He also had 15 points and eight blocks.
"We were able to get in position, use our size and length," Gindorff said.
Stevin Lipp led Breckenridge (26-3) with 21 points and three steals.