Caledonia again the King of Section 1AA
Owen King is going back to the Class AA boys basketball state tournament for the fourth time.
After falling in the Section One, Class AA title game a year ago, Caledonia reclaimed the crown by toppling Byron 87-53 on Thursday at Mayo Civic Auditorium.
Owen King, a senior, and his brother, sophomore Noah King, led the charge for the top-seeded Warriors. Noah King scored 27 points, 21 in the deciding first half, and Owen added 24 points.
Caledonia claimed section titles in 2014, ‘15 and ‘16, when Owen was an eighth-grader, freshman and sophomore.
"That’s four out of five," Owen King said. "That one’s still bitter, but I hope we can move on and keep going."
The older King brothers are joined in the starting lineup by their youngest brother, Eli, who is just an eighth-grader. Their father, Brad King, is in his first season as head coach of the Warriors.
Top-seeded Caledonia (26-4) had an amazing run during the semifinals and finals of section play. During the second half, in a tie game against St. Charles, and the first half against Byron, the Warriors had a 110-51 scoring run over 36 minutes of play.
"That’s good basketball," Brad King said. "And our section is very good. To come out of our section playing the way we have, in all of our playoff games, I’m really happy."
On Thursday, the Warriors had a dominating first 18 minutes and led 57-19 at the half.
"There was probably not a team in the state that could have beat them (Thursday) the way they were shooting," Byron coach Kyle Finney said. "They’ll represent Section One very well."
Byron, the No. 3 seed, closed its season with a 24-7 record.
"Our kids had a great season," Finney said. "It’s just tough for them to realize that right now."
Caledonia 87, Byron 53
No. 3 BYRON (53)
Michael Coble 16 P, 5 R, 2 3-PT; Kaden Koski 2 P, 6 R; Bjorn Knutson 13 P, 3 3-PT; Luke Barth 3 P, 1 3-PT; Noah Buri 2 P; Nick Brown 8 P; Conner Christenson 4 P; Conner Strain 1 P; Jake Braaten 2 P; Will Holz 2 P.
No. 1 CALEDONIA (87)
Eli King 2 P; Riley Gavin 4 P; Andrew Goergen 2 P; Casey Storlie 2 P; Tate Meiners 2 P; Noah King 27 P, 4 R, 3 3-PT; Marten Morem 8 P; Owen King 24 P, 12 R, 2 3-PT; Noah Kearney 2 P; Sam Barthel 14 P, 4 3-PT.
Halftime: CAL 57, BYR 19.
Free throws: BYR 7-14, CAL 4-4. Field goals: BYR 20-58, CAL 37-64.
Three-point goals: BYR 6-25, CAL 9-18. Rebounds: BYR 32, CAL 37. Turnovers: BYR 12, CAL 6.