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MACCRAY drubs Redwood Valley

Dylan Aeikens of MACCRAY, left, gets fouled by Mike Felt of Redwood Valley, center, as Erich Panitzke of the Cardinals and Darrin Caspers, right of the Wolverines look on during their Section 3AA-North boys basketball semifinal Thursday in Willmar. Tribune photo by T.J. Bartelt1 / 2
Jay Hilbrands, left, of MACCRAY drives around J.T. Radel of Redwood Valley during the first half Thursday in Willmar. Tribune photo by T.J. Bartelt2 / 2

WILLMAR -- MACCRAY couldn't stop Redwood Valley's Mike Felt -- again -- but it didn't matter in the second half as the Wolverines pulled away for an 83-69 win in a Section 3AA-North boys basketball quarterfinal game Thursday.

Fans stood six rows deep in the corners of the Willmar Senior High gymnasium to see the No. 1-seed Wolverines duke it out with the No. 4 Cardinals in the first half.

Redwood Valley had the upper hand much of the first half, thanks to Felt and his 20 first-half points. He made four of his five 3-pointers in the first half and the Cardinals had a 20-14 lead with 9:11 left in the half.

"Mike had a great first half," said Redwood Valley coach Markus Okeson. "The other guys had good looks, but they didn't go down. If those go down, it's a different ball game."

Felt finished with 40 points, the same amount he had in MACCRAY's 87-79 win at Redwood Falls Feb. 24.

MACCRAY had the answers with not one player, but several. Seth Hinrichs and Seth Sparks hit back-to-back three-pointers as part of an 10-0 run to give the Wolverines a short-lived lead, then Hinrichs scored four of the team's last six to make it a 32-29 MACCRAY lead at halftime.

The Wolverines controlled the second half, with Redwood Valley making short runs but only getting as close as 50-49 with 7:18 left. Dylan Aeikens hit a three-pointer out of a timeout and MACCRAY made the lead stick by shooting 16-of-18 free throws the rest of the way.

Aeikens said the Wolverines didn't try to do many things different the second time against the Cardinals.

"We were just going to play as tight as we could (on Felt), and play as tough of man-to-man as we could," he said. "We gave them too many second shots in Redwood Falls. We didn't do that tonight."

Shaun Condon led MACCRAY with 24 points, followed by Tyler Dammann with 13, Aeikens with 12 and Hinrichs with 11.

MACCRAY will now meet third-seeded Montevideo (19-7) in the sub-section final at 6 p.m. Saturday in Redwood Falls. Behind Condon's 29 points, the Wolverines upended Montevideo 63-51 on Feb. 10 in Clara City.

Montevideo beat No. 2 Minnesota Valley Lutheran 66-53 in the other sub-section semifinal Thursday.

MACCRAY 83, Redwood Valley 69

Redwood Valley (20-6) 29 40 -- 69

MACCRAY (26-1) 32 51 -- 83

REDWOOD VALLEY - 24 FG (9 3-pt); 12-16 FT; rebounds not available; 19 fouls ... Scoring: Sam Knudsen 6, Brian Kohler 7, Trevor Goblirsch 3, Nate Thooft 3, Mike Felt 40, Erich Panitzke 5, J.T. Radel 5 ... 3-point shots: Knudsen 2, Kohler 1, Thooft 1, Felt 5 ... Rebound, assist, steal leaders not available

MACCRAY - 29-61 FG (3-10 3-pt); 20-22 FT; 35 rebounds; 13 fouls ... Scoring: Shaun Condon 24, Jay Hilbrands 6, Jordan Smith 4, Tyler Dammann 13, Dylan Aeikens 12, Darrin Caspers 6, Seth Hinrichs 11, Caleb Hanson 4, Seth Sparks 3 ... 3-point shots: Aeikens 1, Hinrichs 1, Sparks 1 ... Rebound leaders: Hilbrands 8, Smith 7, Hinrichs 9 ... Assist leaders: Condon 5, Hilbrands 5 ... Steal leaders: none