Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Mary Ellen Dewey
Moose Lake Star-Gazette 

Fifth grade boys win state tourney


The Moose Lake/Willow River Rebels fifth-grade boys basketball team wins state playoffs June 11. They are, front: Brady Robbins, Eli Youngs, Kaden Robbins, Cobe Kirk and Adam Nuemann; back: Coach Paul Dewey, Coach Al VonRueden, Luke Dewey, Hunter Van Heel, Joey Steen, Tyler VonRueden, Nolan Nelson and Coach Chad Robbins.

In April, the Moose Lake/Willow River fifth grade boys basketball team won the Region 4 and Region 7 playoffs to qualify to play in the state playoffs. They represented the MLWR Region 4.

On Sunday, June 11, they traveled to Maple Grove Middle School for the state tournament. There were seven other regional teams, including Osakis, Spring Grove, Bemidji, Minneota-Lincoln, Pelican Rapids, Stewartville and Esko.

The first game, at 8:50 a.m., was against Osakis. In the first half, they had a slow start and led by five, 18-13. In the second half, their defense took over and held Osakis to only three baskets, winning 35-19. The victory moved them to the winners' brackets.

Their next opponent was Spring Grove. They came out ready to score and at halftime led 15-9. In the second half, they allowed only four baskets, winning 33-17.

Their next game was the Minnesota state championship game. They faced Stewartville, who had defeated Minneota-Lincoln 31-22 and Esko 37-28. The Rebels had defeated Stewartville in the Braham Northwoods tournament by 10 earlier in the year. Stewartville was out to make up for that loss. Stewartville led at halftime 17-15. The second half was a close game all the way, sinking some crucial free throws. MLWR captured the state title with the 33-28 victory.

The players received medals and a trophy basketball.

This victory qualifies the Rebels to compete in the Pacesetter Great Quad State tournament on Saturday and Sunday, June 24-25, at the Xcel Energy Center. Their competition will be the champions from North Dakota, South Dakota and Iowa.

Last year, this Rebels group got second in Minnesota and second in the four-state playoffs.


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