Congratulations to the following teams and individuals who accomplished quite a bit during the prep football and basketball seasons. I know a few are missed here, but more congratulations are coming in future columns.
- The football team at Minneapolis North and Coach Charles Adams for making their ninth consecutive state playoff appearance and winning the Section 4AA title.
- The Robbinsdale Cooper football team who, under Coach Willie Howard, made it to the Class AAAAA semifinals of the state playoffs.
- Running back Emmett Johnson, leading Holy Angels to the Class AAAA state quarterfinal and being named Minnesota’s Mr. Football.
- The Fridley High School football team and Coach Justin Reese, who led them to the AAAA quarterfinals in the state football playoffs.
- To Minneapolis North’s basketball team who, under Hall of Fame Coach Larry McKenzie, won their ninth straight City Conference championship and made it to the Class AA state championship game.
- The Park Center boys basketball team, who won the Class AAAA state crown under Head Coach James Ware.
- Totino Grace’s boys basketball team winning the Class AAA state title under Head Coach Nick Carroll.
- The DeLaSalle boys basketball team who, under the guidance of Head Coach Travis Bledsoe, earned a trip to the Class AAA state championship game.
- The St. Paul Johnson boys basketball team who captured the City Conference title, coached by Colin Moore.
- Tre’ Holloman, the point guard who not only led Cretin Derham Hall to the Class AAAA semifinals in the state tournament but also was named the Gatorade Player of the Year award in Minnesota and Metro Player of the Year by the Star Tribune, finishing as one of the Raiders’ most decorated players in school history.
- Park Center guard Braeden Carrington, who was named the state’s Mr. Basketball after leading the Pirates to the Class AAAA state championship.
- Khalid El-Amin, the former Minneapolis North and UCONN star, who just finished his first year as head boys basketball coach at St. Thomas Academy.
- Tara Starks and the Hopkins girls basketball team for not only capturing the Class AAAA title but finishing in the top 10-ranked nationally as well.
- The St. Paul Como Park girls basketball team and Head Coach Yolonda Englund for leading the Cougars to a Class AAA state tournament finish.
- The Benilde-St. Margaret’s girls basketball team for making it to the Class AAA state tournament under Head Coach Mike Swann.
- Hopkins forward Maya Nnaji, who was named Gatorade Player of the Year for the state of Minnesota and Metro Player of the Year by the Star Tribune, in addition to leading the Royals to a Class AAAA state championship.
- Future University of Minnesota Golden Gopher Amaya Battle of Hopkins for leading her team to the Class AAAA state crown and being the state’s Ms. Basketball.
Dr. Mitchell Palmer McDonald is a contributing columnist at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder.