Shortly before the boys’ basketball season got started, Minneapolis Washburn Coach REGGIE PERKINS indicated that his team would make a little noise before it was all over.
The Millers did more than that. The City Conference champs made a profound statement by defeating defending Class 3A champ St. Paul Johnson 85-80 in the Twin Cities Championship last Saturday afternoon at Washburn.
Washburn, ranked No. 5 in Class 3A, were led by CEDRIC CHAPPELL’s team-leading 22 points, while CLARENCE THOMAS brought his “A” game to contribute 18. DWIGHT ANDERSON added 16 and NICK ANDERSON had 11.
ROOSEVELT SCOTT led Johnson, ranked No. 1 in Class 3A, with 24 points. ESTAN TYLER and WAYLON JOHNSON chipped in 12 each, while CHRIS SMITH-BOND, MARCUS MARSHALL, and ANTHONY LEE added 10 apiece.
Both teams represent the last two Class 3A state champs, with Washburn capturing the crown in 2009. The team that the Millers beat in the semifinals? Johnson!
Another positive sign for Washburn is that they also beat the Governors for the Twin City title that season — just as they did last week.
Coach Perkins and Johnson Head Coach VERN SIMMONS have a little more in common than leading the state’s top two City teams. Perkins starred as a guard for St. Cloud State University from 1984-88. Simmons led Morningside College (Iowa) from 1979-83, leading them to the NCAA Division II Final Four as a point guard. Both schools were then members of the North Central Conference.
Washburn names sound familiar
If one were look at the names of three contributors from Washburn’s victory, one might think that a Supreme Court judge, a former NBA player, and a former high school and college star played a role in the triumph.
Check this out! Clarence Thomas is an African American who was appointed as a judge on the Supreme Court in 1991. Nick Anderson is the shooting guard who starred at the University of Illinois in the late 1980s and then went on to a stellar NBA career. Dwight Anderson was a high school all-American guard out of Dayton, Ohio who had a brilliant collegiate career at Kentucky and USC during the late 1970s and early ’80s.
Thought it was interesting enough to mention.
Mitchell Palmer McDonald welcomes reader responses to mmcdonald@spokesman-record er.com.