A 22-4 run by Eastview to close out the first half was enough for the Lightning as they took down Eden Prairie, 67-51, in the Class 4A state tournament quarterfinals on March 22 at Target Center.
This state tournament matchup started out with the two teams trading buckets early. The Eagles’ leading scorers throughout were Miles Smith and Chiddi Obiazor. Smith knocked down four 3-pointers in the game while Obiazor continued an impressive run as he tallied 15 points for EP.
Around the halfway mark of the first half, Eastview began to widen its lead to double digits with standout shooting from Kayser Hassan. He finished with 17 points and three 3-pointers.
While Hassan and the Lightning were building their lead, the Eagles struggled to make shots. Smith made a 3-pointer with 8 minutes left in the first half to make it 18-16 EP. The Eagles did not make another shot until the 14-minute mark of the second half when Obiazor knocked down a layup.
Despite the Eastview lead exceeding 20 points, EP did attempt a comeback and cut into the lead. Smith and Obiazor led the charge, while junior guard Joey Flom added 8 points to help in the comeback effort.
Unfortunately for the Eagles, it was too little too late as the Lightning advance to Thursday’s semifinal game against top-seeded Park Center.
As for EP, the Eagles move into the consolation bracket. On Wednesday at 10:30 a.m., EP meets up with Andover in the consolation semifinals. If the Eagles win, they will play in Thursday’s consolation championship for fifth place. All consolation games are played at Concordia University in St. Paul.
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