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Defending AAA girls hoops champ Cooper beats Austin in Quarterfinal

March 13, 2019 11:32 PM

The Class AAA defending champion and second-seeded Robbinsdale Cooper (21-8) will continue its quest for a second straight state title with a 72-40 win over Austin (20-9) on Wednesday afternoon in the state quarterfinals at Maturi Pavilion on the campus of the University of Minnesota.

Click the video box on this page to see KSTP Sports' extended highlights of this Girls State Basketball Quarterfinal

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The Hawks, who are in just their second state tournament, will play the #3 Becker vs. Marshall winner in the state semifinals on Thursday, March 14 at 2 p.m. at Williams Arena while the Packers head to the consolation semifinals on Thursday at 4 p.m. against the loser of that matchup at Gangelhoff Center on the campus of Concordia University, St. Paul.

Cooper led from start-to-finish although Austin kept the margin within single digits throughout much of the first half, trailing by just four (17-13) with under eight minutes to go. But Cooper was able to close the half on an 11-3 scoring spurt to claim a 16-point lead at the break, their largest of the half.

The 11-3 run was just the start of a larger stretch that saw the Hawks go from up by eight (29-21) with under three minutes to play in the first half to a 28-point lead (57-29) with under thirteen and a half minutes to go in the game – a 28-8 scoring stretch spanning under five minutes of game clock.

Robbinsdale Cooper would lead by as many as 37 in the game.

Senior guard Aja Wheeler scored a game-high 22 points for Cooper on strong 10-of-13 shooting with seven rebounds, five assists and four steals. Sophomore forward Kierra Wheeler had the game’s lone double-double with 19 points and 13 rebounds, also dishing four assists with four blocks and three steals.

The Hawks totaled 15 steals, forced 21 turnovers while committing nine and had a 26-7 advantage in points off turnovers.

The Packers were led by senior forward Abby Lewis with 15 points including 3-of-4 from three-point range.

Courtesy: Minnesota State High School League

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Credits

Chris Long

Copyright 2019 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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