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No. 1 Cretin-Derham Hall holds off relentless Eden Prairie

By JIM PAULSEN, Star Tribune, 03/22/18, 7:45PM CDT


The Raiders, behind Minnesota recruit Daniel Oturu's big second half, defeated the Eagles 60-56 to advance to the Class 4A championship game.

Cretin-Derham Hall forward Daniel Oturu (25) got tangled with Eden Prairie forward Connor Christensen (24) and guard Drake Dobbs (11) in a struggle for a rebound in the second half. Photo: RENEE JONES SCHNEIDER ¥ renee.jones@startribune.com

When it mattered, Cretin-Derham Hall leaned on the one thing Eden Prairie couldn’t account for: Daniel Oturu.

The 6-10 center took over the game in the second half, lifting the Raiders to a 60-56 victory over the Eagles in the Class 4A semifinals Thursday at Target Center. The future Gopher scored 19 of his game-high 24 points in the second half, helping hold off a strong Eden Prairie charge in the game’s final minutes.

“I’m not John Wooden, but yes, we wanted to get the ball into him,” Cretin-Derham Hall coach Jerry Kline said.

Oturu was frustrated in the first half by Eden Prairie’s relentless, active defense and the play of his counterpart, sophomore Austin Andrews. Oturu made it his mission put the Raiders on his back after a scoring just five first-half points.

First report

Cretin-Derham Hall, leaning on towering Daniel Oturu, survived relentless Eden Prairie Thursday with a 60-56 victory in the Class 4A semifinals.

Oturu, saddled with two fouls early, scored 19 of his 24 points in the second half and added 12 rebounds in the game.

Eden Prairie trailed by 14 points in the second half but rallied and cut the deficit to one, 57-56, but that was as close as the Eagles could get.

Ryan Larson added 18 points and seven assists for Cretin-Derham Hall (29-2). Austin Andrews had 16 points and Kyler Kluge had 13 for Eden Prairie (23-8).

Check back later for more on the game.

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