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Boys hit the courts

By Star Tribune, 12/20/11, 5:59PM CST


The holiday break week brings several tournaments to the metro area and one in St. Cloud.

The Best Buy Holiday Classic (Dec. 28-30) at Augsburg College in Minneapolis features three-time defending Class 4A state champ Hopkins, in addition to Minnetonka, Chanhassen, Minneapolis Henry, Duluth East, Durango (Las Vegas), St. Paul Johnson and Henry Sibley. 
But more than a few eyes will be on the Eden Prairie tournament. Joining the hot-starting Eagles on their home court next week is Class 3A power Benilde-St. Margaret’s, which just knocked off Hopkins. The Red Knights have guards Isaiah Zierden and Sanjay Lumpkin leading the way, combining to average nearly 38 points per game. The Eagles have shown plenty of flash in the first few weeks of the season, including a lid-lifting victory over Apple Valley on Dec. 6. Holy Family and Waconia are also in the field.
Other tournaments of note:
Granite City Classic 
at St. Cloud Apollo (Dec. 28-30)
Teams: Rosemount, Prior Lake, Delano, Breck, St. Michael-Albertville, Orono, Apple Valley, Buffalo.
Player to watch: Tyus Jones of Apple Valley. Last year at this time, the phenom was still in the early stages of recovering from a lacerated kidney. The highly touted guard leads the metro with 29.5 points per game for the Eagles. He put on a 37-point show against Eden Prairie with Michigan State’s Tom Izzo in the crowd. Apple Valley opens the tournament against Buffalo.
Catholic Spirit Tournament at University of St. Thomas (Dec. 27-29)
Teams: Holy Angels, Minneapolis Southwest, Wayzata, Totino-Grace, Hill-Murray, Providence Academy, Cretin-Derham Hall, St. Agnes
Player to watch: C.J. Neumann averaged 16.3 points per game through Cretin-Derham Hall’s 1-2 start to the season.
Tartan Tournament (Dec. 28-30)
Teams: Tartan, Columbia Heights, Elk River, Rogers, Spring Lake Park, Monticello, Bloomington Kennedy, Hayfield
Player to watch: Speedy point guard Darrion Strong will be a force with the ball on his home court.
Brian Stensaas

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