Boys basketball: Red Lake falls to Maranatha in state Class A quarterfinals
MINNEAPOLIS — Red Lake boys basketball coach Roger White followed senior guard Ryan Holthusen out of the Warriors’ locker room on Thursday during the Class A quarterfinals at Williams Arena.
Red Lake was making its sixth state tournament appearance and first since 2003, but that was little consolation after losing 95-67 to Maranatha Christian Academy.
“It’s always tough to lose, but especially for a senior like Ryan Holthusen,” White said.
Red Lake ran into an offensive buzzsaw the likes of which are rarely seen.
Jeremiah Hanson, a 6-foot-4 junior forward, looked like Jimmy Chitwood of “Hoosiers” fame, making five 3-pointers and scoring a game-high 31 points to lead the second-ranked Mustangs (26-3), who advance to play third-ranked Rushford-Peterson (30-1).
Hanson is the youngest of eight brothers to play for veteran coach Jeffrey Wall.
“We knew Red Lake liked to play up-tempo, and for the most part, that was kind of fun,” Wall said. “We knew we had to handle their defensive traps, and we did a good job with that. We didn’t want to have quick possessions by taking too many quick shots.”
Maranatha Christian, of Brooklyn Park, also got 21 points from Jake Meyen, displaying an inside-outside game that is tough to stop.
Holthusen, one of two seniors for Red Lake, had 28 points to lead the Warriors (23-8), while Mason Kingbird and James Jourdain added 10 points apiece.
“Maranatha is ranked second in the state for a reason, and they showed it,” said Holthusen, a four-year starter at point guard who has received college interest from the likes of Wisconsin-Superior.
“They’re a great shooting team, and it seemed like we were always a split-second late getting over on our defensive rotation. At one point, I thought they hit four straight 3-pointers. That’s tough to keep up with.”
With both Red Lake and Fond du Lac Ojibwe playing in the quarterfinals, American Indians showed up en masse at Williams Arena to cheer on both clubs known as the Ogichidaag, the Ojibwe word for warriors.
Red Lake, however, came out flat and jittery.
“I think some of kids were a little awestruck,” White said. “We love the support, but it was a little hard for them to keep focused. I saw a couple players look out at the crowd, and I never see that. We came out, and when you looked from one side to the other side, it was all Red Lake fans. We never relaxed enough to play our style of basketball.”
Maranatha outshot Red Lake 58 to 30 percent in the first half in building a 45-28 lead, and 57 to 36 percent for the game.
The Warriors came out with a full-court press in the second half and had some success with it, but by that time, it was effectively too late. Every steal and layup on one end was answered with a big shot by Maranatha on the other. The Mustangs were 8-for-17 from 3-point range.
White said the experience of playing in front of a large crowd at Williams Arena could help his program in the future.
“I told our younger players to remember this experience and set a goal to work hard this offseason to get back here,” White said.
Maranatha 95, Red Lake 67
Red Lake — Rob Mclain 6, James Jourdain 10, Russell Kingbird 4, Ryan Holthusen 28, Trevenn Beaulieu 7, Mason Kingbird 10, Jeremy Martin 2. Totals 22 17-26 67.
3-point goals — Holthusen 3, Beaulieu, M. Kingbird 2.
Maranatha Christian Academy — Damario Armstrong 6, Josh Goldschmidt 15, Jake Meyen 21, Cameron Monson 10, Jeremiah Hanson 31, Jesse Hammond 2, Brock Burquest 4, Blake Ott 2, Max Lund 4. Totals 36 15-22 95.
Halftime — Maranatha 45, Red Lake 28
3-point goals — Goldschmidt, Meyen 2, Hanson 5.