Boys State Basketball: Minneapolis North back in 2A title game after 71-63 win over Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta

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For decades, the Minneapolis North boys basketball program has been virtually synonymous with championship game appearance. Since 1980, the Polars have been an entrant in a championship game 11 times. In that journey, Minneapolis North has emerged as a champion seven times.

Another opportunity to add to one of the richest legacies in Minnesota boys basketball history emerged when top-seeded Minneapolis North recorded a 71-63 victory over No. 5 Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta in the Class AA semifinals on Friday, March 25, 2022 at Williams Arena on the University of Minnesota campus. Senior guard Demaiko Anderson scored 19 points and senior forward Jacob Butler chipped in 14 points and 18 rebounds to power the Polars (27-6) into a championship meeting with either No. 2 Caledonia or No. 3 Annandale on Saturday at 1 p.m. Those squads played in the second semifinal.

Minneapolis North, which prepares for postseason play with an aggressive regular season, has four of its six losses to Class AAAA schools in Minnesota. Since losing to Wayzata, a Class AAAA finalist on Saturday, the Polars have nine in a row. North’s other two losses are to schools from outside Minnesota.

The Polars, who last won a championship in 2017 when they captured the second of consecutive Class A crowns, built a 13-point advantage en route to a 43-37 lead at the break. Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta, which had an 11-point run in the second half, closed to within 65-60 in the final minute of regulation, but the Polars pulled away behind four points from senior guard Willie Wilson.

Senior center Jackson Loge was a dominant inside-outside force for the Tigers with 37 points and 14 rebounds.