MINNEAPOLIS -- Top-ranked Minneapolis Henry put on a clinic in advancing to Saturday's Class 3A championship.
The Patriots routed the Cloquet Lumberjacks 75-46 Thursday night behind All-State senior forward Johnnie Gilbert's 13 points, seven rebounds, five blocks and three steals.
Senior guard Greg Patton scored 17 and sophomore guard Terry Perris added 14 points for the Patriots (27-1), who will face St. Thomas Academy (21-6) for the championship Saturday night at Williams Arena.
The Patriots haven't won a state title since 1945, when they won their second straight championship.
''That's the legacy our guys want to leave,'' Patriots coach Larry McKenzie said.
Gilbert, who will play at Oklahoma in the fall, said he couldn't wait.
''We want to finish it off strong,'' he said. ''This one feels good, but it doesn't mean anything compared to what Saturday night will feel like.''
St. Thomas edged Mankato East 70-68 in the other Class 3A semifinal. In class 4A, Maple Grove advanced with a 74-58 victory over Moorhead and will meet Tartan, an 80-56 winner over Apple Valley, for the title Saturday.
In today's games at Williams Arena, Rushford-Peterson (26-1) faces Southwest Minnesota Christian (26-1) and Ortonville (21-6) faces Win-E-Mac (25-2) in the afternoon session.
Tonight in Class 2A, it's Waterville-Elysian-Morristown (24-3) against DeLaSalle (21-6) and Litchfield (27-0) vs. Staples-Motley (26-1).
Joe Thomas, a reserve senior, rescued St. Thomas Academy, which had a sudden case of the free-throw jitters Thursday night.
Thomas calmly sank two foul shots with 3.3 seconds left as the Cadets edged Mankato East 70-68 in a Class 3A semifinal.
''I love that situation, I dream of that situation,'' said Thomas, who led the Cadets with 19 points.
Overall, the Cadets missed 12 of 27 free throws.
Senior Bryan Wolle, who scored 25 points, heaved a desperation 3-pointer from beyond halfcourt, but it fell several feet short at the buzzer.
The Cadets, who won it all in 1998, will go for their second title in three years Saturday at Williams Arena. The Cougars finished 17-9 despite a furious comeback in the final minutes and superior foul shooting (75 percent to 56 percent).
Maple Grove's Brent Lawson acted like he'd been here before and his teammates followed suit.
''It's more like we don't know any better. We're just playing our game,'' the senior forward said after leading Maple Grove to a 74-58 semifinal victory over Moorhead.
Maple Grove had never played in a state tournament game before. Now, the Crimson will go for their first title Saturday against favored Tartan.
Tartan whipped Apple Valley 80-56 behind star Jake Sullivan's 26 points.
Lawson, who signed with St. Francis (Pa.) last fall, scored 27 points on 13-of-18 shooting and stole three passes from the Spuds (21-5), who were making their 21st trip to state.
''I'd been hearing he's the best player nobody's heard about,'' said teammate Jeremy Grev, who scored 14. ''I think people are starting to hear about him now.''
Sullivan started slowly but got red-hot in the second half as Tartan routed Apple Valley 80-56.
''I had kind of a rough time in the first half. But our team just stayed with it. Thank God I have good teammates,'' Sullivan said. ''My shots just weren't falling. My legs were a little sore. But eventually I got it to go.''
Sullivan, an All-State guard who is headed to Iowa State, missed 12 of his first 15 shots but finished with 26 points, and junior forward Erik Crawford added 22.
After the Eagles (22-4) trimmed an 11-point deficit to 44-41, Sullivan sank back-to-back 3-pointers and the Titans took a 52-45 lead into the fourth quarter.
Sullivan's leaning jumper in the lane and a short baseline basket restored Tartan's double-digit lead at 56-45 and fueled a 38-11 fourth-quarter blitz that included 13 points from Crawford.
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