Boys’ basketball loses to top ranked team

Minnehaha Academy brings competition, crowds


Ayelet Prottas

Junior Jacob Holm guards Minnehaha Academy junior Hercy Miller. The final score of the game was 52-69.

Claire Bargman

When playing against Minnehaha Academy and its nationally ranked player Jalen Suggs, coach David Breitenbucher said the plan was to keep him away from the basket. 

“We tried to have a game plan to pack it in on Jalen (Suggs) who is their best player. We wanted to focus on making him an outside shooter versus getting to the basket,” Breitenbucher said. “I thought the guys did a good job following the game plan.” 

Park lost 52-69 to Minnehaha Academy Feb. 14, making their record 8-13. Sophomore Blake Anderson said despite the tough opponent, the team persevered and kept up a good game. 

“Obviously they’re one of the best teams in the state, but I think it went all right,” Anderson said.  “We competed for a lot of the game, especially in the first half.” 

As girls’ basketball played before the boys’ team, athletic director Andy Ewald said there was an incredibly high attendance at the Minnehaha games. 

“If you look at our past double headers with Edina and Hopkins, there’s a lot of interest in having those games, and the quality of the opponents,” Ewald said. 

According to Anderson, the players played a more cohesive game during the first half, but as the game progressed they lost focus and let Minnehaha get ahead. 

“The game kind of got away from us in the second half. They started getting a lot of easy buckets and three-pointers,” Anderson said. “The whole energy in the gym went down a little bit. That made it tougher to bring that toughness back.” 

With a double header against such a competitive team, Ewald said the gym was packed and he had to decline various ticket reservation calls. 

“We just told them that we were not doing any reservations or presales. It would have just been a headache,” Ewald said. 

Breitenbucher said the team played well overall but could work on losing the ball less and playing a more clean-cut game. 

“We would turn the ball over and get sloppy. I think we had 16 turnovers, but at the end of the year I tell them we should try and get single digits,” Breitenbucher said. 

Anderson believes the team has some offensive improvements to make if they want to compete to win Conference.

“I think we can improve our offense. A lot of times we just stand around and don’t really move. We also need to work on box outs and rebounds,” Anderson said. “We are trying to win the conference since we still have a chance, but Chaskas at the top right now.” 

Park boys’ basketball will play its next game 7 p.m. Feb. 18 at Benilde-St. Margaret’s School against Benilde.