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Maple Grove Voice

Maple Grove, Osseo Set to Renew Rivalry

Jan 18, 2017 06:56AM ● By Doug Erlien

(photo by Doug Erlien)

There are games on every sports calendar that are circled. The games that records are thrown out. This week, Maple Grove and Osseo will renew their rivalry on the hardwood as the two teams and their fans will fill the Maple Grove gym and provide an atmosphere that on a Friday night in January is hard to beat.

When Maple Grove became a high school in 1996, a rivalry was born. Two schools separated by four miles have through the years produced some of the more memorable regular season games.

“I think with these kids growing up together, going to elementary and middle school together, playing youth ball together really brings a different level of excitement to this game for the players and the communities,” Maple Grove Boys Basketball Head Coach Nick Schroeder said.

In 2011, the two schools started playing double-headers giving the communities an opportunity to catch two games on one night.

“The double headers have added a new dimension to what was already a great rivalry,” Maple Grove Girls Coach Basketball Mark Cook said. “It’s such a neat event for our two communities.”

Girls Basketball
Twelve years ago, Cook took over the girls program at Maple Grove that was hoping to keep pace with their rivals to the east.

“When I started 12 years ago, we were just trying to compete with the powerhouse that is Osseo girls basketball,” Cook said. “
Twelve years later, I think we have made it a legit rivalry where both teams have a shot at winning every time we play. It is always a really fun night.”

How close has the regular season series been over the past six seasons?

Six wins for the Crimson and six wins for the Orioles.

“It’s a really fun rivalry,” Osseo Girls Head Basketball Coach Jen Moen said. “It is one that our kids look forward to every year.”

What’s more impressive is that in the 13 games (including the section championship game in 2010), the total points scored is separated by only 31 points.

The Rivalry Since 2010
Osseo 49 Maple Grove 47
Maple Grove 53 Osseo 39
Maple Grove 63 Osseo 55 (Section Championship)

Osseo 65 Maple Grove 42
Maple Grove 72 Osseo 68

Maple Grove 72 Osseo 60
Osseo 62 Maple Grove 52

Osseo 58 Maple Grove 57
Maple Grove 66 Osseo 45

Maple Grove 57 Osseo 46
Osseo 63 Maple Grove 61

Osseo 49 Maple Grove 47
Maple Grove 48 Osseo 47

Osseo vs. Maple Grove at Maple Grove Senior High School
Friday, Jan. 20, 2017 - 5:30 p.m. Girls Basketball 
Maple Grove Crimson (7-8)
Maple Grove enters the game winners of four of their last five games. The Crimson are paced on the offensive end by a pair of juniors. Katrina Theis (12.1 PPG), and Autumn Mlinar (11.4 PPG) have given the Cook and his Crimson a one-two punch.

Osseo Orioles (4-11)
Osseo returned three starters from last years team and although it has taken a little bit to gel, the Orioles have won two straight including a thrilling come from behind win over Bloomintgon Kennedy. The Orioles battled back from down 22 with seven minutes to play and senior Mikayla Homola scored the game winner. Homola followed up that performance with a 25 point performance in another come from behind win over Totino-Grace. Seniors Mina Porte (13.1), Homola (12.8 PPG), and Azaria Reed (10.9) lead the way for the Orioles.

Boys Basketball 
On the boys side, the rivalry has been one sided. Since 2010, the Orioles have had the better of the match up, winning 11 of the 14 games including twice in section play as well as sweeping the Crimson a year ago. 

“Anytime the kids get a chance to play the rivals they’re cherishing it, they’re loving it,” Osseo Boys Basketball Head Coach Tim Theisen said. 

Both teams possess firepower offensively. The Crimson enter the game ranked second in Class AAAA and are led by seniors Brad Davison, who will be heading to Wisconsin to play for the Badgers next season and Tywhon Pickford, who has returned with a fury from a knee injury that ended his junior campaign early. Zach Theisen leads the way for Osseo along with John and Matt Bezdicek.

The Rivalry Since 2010 
Osseo 58 Maple Grove 53
Osseo 67 Maple Grove 51

Osseo 76 Maple Grove 45
Osseo 55 Maple Grove 54
Osseo 67 Maple Grove 59 Section Semifinals

Osseo 74 Maple Grove 68
Osseo 74 Maple Grove 69

Osseo 70 Maple Grove 60
Maple Grove 65 Osseo 64
Osseo 55 Maple Grove 43 Section Semifinals

Maple Grove 65 Osseo 39
Maple Grove 63 Osseo 53

Osseo 78 Maple Grove 75
Osseo 67 Maple Grove 49

Osseo vs. Maple Grove at  Maple Grove Senior High School
Friday, Jan. 20, 2017 - 7 p.m.
Osseo Orioles (9-4)
The Orioles are coming off of a 63-60 buzzer-beater win over Totino-Grace and look to extend their series winning streak to three games. Zach Theisen (23.5 PPG) leads the way for Osseo while John Bezdicek (12.5 PPG) and Matt Bezdicek (11.4 PPG) add scoring punch for Osseo.

Maple Grove (10-1)
The Crimson have won seven straight contests coming into the game. Led by Brad Davison (27.1 PPG) and Tywhon Pickford (21.2 PPG), the Crimson are averaging 79 points per game.    

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