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Region 13 men's tournament: Vermilion edges West, 100-99

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DAILY GLOBE

COON RAPIDS — Rarely in one basketball game do halves produce such different results.

“Basically, it was a tale of two halves,” Minnesota West men’s basketball coach Justin Heckenlaible described Sunday’s Region 13 consolation championship game between his Bluejays and Vermilion.

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The Bluejays won the first half 53-38 in large part because they connected on 64 percent of their field goals compared to Vermilion’s 42 percent.

But Vermilion won the game, 100-99. The Ironmen converted 67 percent of their field goals in the second half (including 11 of 14 from three-point range) while West made just 38 percent from the field.

“We didn’t leave them open. They got on a roll and made their shots,” Heckenlaible said.

The winning basket was made with half a second remaining on a shot that bounced off the rim and into net.

Minnesota West advanced to the consolation championship game with an 89-68 victory over Northland. Cody Harris scored 27 points for West (hitting on six of nine three-pointers) while teammates Blake Fischer, Derek Buysse and Jackson Seitzinger contributed 12 points apiece. Buysse had 10 rebounds and Seitzinger eight assists in that game.

On Sunday, Buysse and Jordan Thomas scored 21 points each, Harris scored 20 and Seitzinger tallied 17. Taylor Lupton had nine rebounds.

Derek Meger led Vermilion with 30 points and Dre Lucas scored 25.

Minnesota West lost its tournament opener Friday, 78-63 to Central Lakes. The Jays finish the season at 19-11.

“I was proud of how we did. When you go to the state tournament it means you had a very successful year,” said Heckenlaible on Sunday. “It was the best two -year record we’ve had since I’ve been coach.”

Heckenlaible, in his 13th year at the Minnesota West program, was 16-14 last season.

Bluejays 53 99

Vermilion 38 100

BLUEJAYS (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) — Hodges 0-0-1-1, Thomas 3-4-4-21, Murry 1-0-2-5, Seitzinger 3-3-2-17, Buysse 4-4-1-21, Fischer 0-1-0-2, Lupton 0-2-2-6, Bennett 2-0-0-6, Harris 4-3-2-20. Totals 17-17-14-99

VERMILION (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) — Briscoe 0-4-4-12, Lucas 5-5-0-25, Brooks 0-1-0-2, Starks 3-1-0-11, Roddy 1-2-1-8, Wells 5-5-5-30, Meger 1-3-3-12. Totals 15-21-13-100.

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