DeLaSalle's Tyrell Terry was fouled by Waconia's Eric Groeneveld (33) late in the second half. Terry scored a team-high 25 points in the Class 3A Section 6 final victory. Photo by Mark Hvidsten, SportsEngine
DeLaSalle 6-7 junior Jalen Travis camped out underneath the basket, and it worked to his advantage.
“He settled us in,” second-year Islanders coach Travis Bledsoe said. “When we started getting the ball in to him, taking advantage of the defense, I think it calmed us down. It helped us build the lead, and then we had to grind one out.”
Travis helped No. 1-ranked DeLaSalle to a 78-63 victory over Waconia for the Class 3A, Section 6 title Thursday at Chanhassen High School. Finding Travis down low has been the game plan all season, and he provided a “big-time double-double” in a big spot, his coach said.
“I like to play a physical, inside game,” Travis said. “That’s just what I do, keep going at them physically.”
Travis had 11 rebounds by halftime and finished with a season-high 20 points, doubling his average points-per-game mark.
He was aided by Mr. Basketball finalist Tyrell Terry’s team-high 25 points, with 18 coming in the second half. Senior Jamison Battle added 21 points, including 10 of the first 12 Islanders points to start the game.
Waconia junior PJ Hayes scored a game-high 27 points. The Wildcats (17-12) mostly kept the deficit to single digits before the Islanders (24-5) pulled away at the end. Whenever the Wildcats came close, the Islanders had a quick answer.
“I just think that what our kids did, and I’m proud of most, is that we just kept fighting,” Waconia coach Pat Hayes said.
The Islanders have won 15 of their past 16 games. They will look to win a seventh state title in the past eight years. They lost in the state semifinals last year, ending their run of six consecutive Class 3A state titles.
Waconia's PJ Hayes put up a first-half shot over DeLaSalle's Jamison Battle. Hayes scored a game-high 27 points. Photo by Mark Hvidsten, SportsEngine
Hours after the DeLaSalle girls’ basketball team defeated Holy Angels on a winning basket with 5.6 seconds left in the game at the Class 3A state tournament, the DeLaSalle boys’ team gave the school another reason to celebrate:
It’s headed to state, too.
The No. 1-ranked Islanders defeated Waconia 78-63 for the Class 3A, Section 6 title on Thursday at Chanhassen High School. The victory sends DeLaSalle back to the state tournament for an eighth consecutive season and 24th time overall.
DeLaSalle led the entire way, starting with a 10-0 run to start the game. The Wildcats remained close throughout most of the second half, keeping the deficit to single digits, before the Islanders pulled away in the final few minutes with free throws.
Senior guard and Mr. Basketball finalist Tyrell Terry led the Islanders with 25 points, with 18 coming in the second half. Junior Jalen Travis added 20 and senior Jamison Battle scored 21 points.
The Islanders (24-5) have won 15 of their past 16 games. They are seeking their seventh state title in the past eight years. They were upset in the state semifinals last year, ending their run of consecutive Class 3A state titles at six.
Junior guard PJ Hayes scored a game-high 27 points for the No. 3-seeded Wildcats (17-12). No other Waconia player finished in double-digit scoring.
Check back later for more on the game.
DeLaSalle junior Jalen Travis drove past Eric Groeneveld for two of his 20 points. Photo by Mark Hvidsten, SportsEngine