The student news site of Hopkins High School

Vinnie Shahid, senior, plays defense in the Royals’ lone loss of the season. The Royals may get a rematch with the Trojans on March 2 in the section championship.

Boys basketball: section 6AAAA preview

The postseason journey to the first state championship for the Hopkins Royals boys basketball team since 2011 begins tonight.

However, the Royals will enter the playoffs with some question marks across their roster. Amir Coffey and Erik Davis, seniors, will both be unavailable for the first game of the section tournament. Coffey will be resting a nagging foot injury, and Davis will be out with a concussion.

Coffey doesn’t believe his injury will be a big setback for the team.

“It’s not a huge injury to the point that I wouldn’t be able to play, but a couple of days off would definitely help,” Coffey said. “I know my team can pull through without Erik and me [tonight] and get the win.”

The Royals ended their regular season on a high note, winning their last five games by an average of 24.5 points.

With Coffey, the team’s leading scorer, out for the first playoff game, Vinnie Shahid, senior, and Ishmael El-Amin, junior, will need to step up as key contributors. Shahid is averaging 15.0 PPG, and El-Amin is averaging 14.9 PPG.

In their first game of the section 6AAAA playoffs, the Royals will host the Minneapolis Southwest Lakers on Wednesday night at 7 pm. The Lakers are the bottom seed in the section, with a record of 6-19. They are led by senior guard Johnny Sykes, who averages 12.4 PPG.

Even though the Royals are averaging 88.6 PPG compared to the Lakers’ 55.5, the team knows it can’t afford to take the night off.

“We can’t take them lightly,” said Simon Wright, junior. “They’re going to give us their best game, which we expect from everyone.”

If Hopkins comes out on top against Southwest, they will face the winner of St. Louis Park vs. Armstrong on Saturday at Osseo High School at 5:30 pm. The bracket is set up for a potential rematch of the Royals and the Wayzata Trojans in the section championship. The Royals’ lone loss on the season came to the Trojans on Jan. 29.

Wayzata, the two-seed, and Hopkins, the one-seed, are the clear favorites to advance to the championship game.

The Trojans will enter the tournament with a record of 20-6, including wins over Hopkins and Minneapolis North. They are led by senior point guard Johnny Beeninga, who averages 15.4 PPG.

The team isn’t concerned about beating the Trojans so much as making it to the state tournament.

“We have one goal: to win the section,” Shahid said. “What ever it takes to [win the section] is what we will do. It’s not about beating Wayzata or anyone else; it would just feel great to get back to state.”

The Royal Page • Copyright 2024 • FLEX WordPress Theme by SNOLog in