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Becker knocks off defending champ Robbinsdale Cooper

March 14, 2019 05:06 PM

Sophomore guard Julia Bengston hit two free throws with 10.2 seconds remaining to lift Becker past Robbinsdale Cooper in a thrilling Class AAA semifinal game at Williams Arena. Bengston scored a game high 29 points for the Bulldogs (27-4), who will face DeLaSalle in the AAA championship game March 16 at Williams at 6:00 p.m.

It will be a rematch of the 2007 AAA title match that saw Becker win its only state hoop title with a 41-39 over the Islanders. DeLaSalle last won a AAA crown in 2013. 

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The Hawks, defending Class AAA champs, did not fall easily. Thanks in part to senior guard Aja Wheeler''s 17 points, the Hawks led by as many as seven in the first half before Becker made a late rush to take a 40-34 lead into the locker room. 

The Bulldogs stayed ahead most of the second half as well and led 66-62 with a minute to go. Cooper fought back on a Wheeler steal and a basket and a second basket by sophomore guard Kierra Wheeler that tied the game at 66 with 16 seconds left. Bengston, who played all 36 minutes, was then fouled and converted both free throws to give Becker the lead.

The Hawks (21-9) got the ball down the court and took two shots but failed to convert. Aja Wheeler scored 25 and Kierra added 21 for Cooper, who will play Holy Angels for third place on March 16 at 3:00 p.m. at Gangelhoff Center at Concordia University.

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