Boys Hoops Playoffs: Braham boys rip RC, Blaine beats Cambridge-Isanti

In the March 7 Section 7AA boys basketball playoff opener, Braham defeated Rush City for the third time this season 77-23 at home. Tyler Vaughan scored 26 points and had 10 rebounds, with Cameron Braund adding 21 points, 8 rebounds and 2 blocked shots.

Cam Braund on the win over Rush City: “We played great defense against Rush City. The first six minutes we didn’t allow them to score, and the first six minutes of the second half we didn’t allow them to score, either. Our defense was just superb. They are big rivals.”

Adding depth for the Bombers were Anthony Bias (21 pts), Shaun Hollenkamp (7 pts) and Zach Dahlman (5 pts).

South No. 2 seed Braham (26-1) next plays in the Saturday, March 10 quarterfinals against Moose Lake-Willow River (15-12) at UMD at 6 p.m. Just back on Feb. 21, the Bombers handled the Rebels 98-67. The winner advances to the 7AA semifinals– March 15 back at UMD.

Braund on the Moose Lake rematch: “They have two great post guys– Tayler Mattison and Kaleb Koecher. We’ve got to deny their inside game and just keeping playing our defense.”

Also in Braham’s half of the brackets, North No. 1 seed Virginia takes on No. 4 Duluth Marshall Saturday night in the quarterfinals. The Blue Devils are the defending section champions.

In the other half of the brackets, quarterfinal matchups will be South No. 1 seed Esko vs. South No. 4 Mora, and North No. 2 International Falls playing No. 3 Deer River.

Section 7AAAA: Blaine 73, Cambridge-Isanti 44

For the second straight season, Blaine ended Cambridge-Isanti boys basketball’s season with a 73-44 win in the March 8 quarterfinals. The Bengals (16-11) , seeded No. 2 in 7AAAA, next host No. 3 Andover (6-21) in the March 13 semifinals.

Top scorers from the Bluejackets in the loss were Matt Swanson (13), Jordan Schleicher (7), Ryan Gagne (5) and Hunter Vavra (5). The Jackets close the season with a 3-24 record.

The other 7AAAA semifinal will have top-seed Duluth East (18-8) hosting No. 4 Forest Lake (12-15).