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Minnesota high school boys and girls basketball top games of the week (Feb. 28-March 5)

DeLaSalle and Wayzata boys face off, and Mankato East and Mankato West girls play in section title game

Minnesota boys and girls basketball top performers of the week (Feb. 20-26)

Vote now: Who should be SBLive's Minnesota Athlete of the Week? (Feb. 20-26)

SBLive's Minnesota high school boys basketball Power 25 (Feb. 27)

Boys basketball

Park Center (22-1) at Maple Grove (18-6), 3/3 at 7 p.m.

Park Center is coming off a shocking home loss to Elk River and will look to take out its undefeated season disappointment against Maple Grove on Friday.

Park Center had one loss last season and went on to win the Class 4A championship, but this one feels different than the Totino-Grace loss last year. The Pirates should have minimal issues continuing their success throughout the playoffs with their deep and talented roster.

Maple Grove is 4-1 in its last five games but have struggled with top teams on its schedule this year. The Crimson’s signature win is a 68-58 win over Andover earlier in the year. Park Center beat the same Andover team 97-91 prior to its shocking loss to Elk River. 

This game should be a great indicator for both teams going into the section playoffs.

Mankato East (19-5) at Owatonna (18-6), 2/28 at 7:30 p.m.

Mankato East and Owatonna face off for, what should be, the deciding game in the Big 9 Conference.

Mankato East defeated Owatonna 53-48 back on January 20 and are 6-1 in its last seven games. The Cougars have another tough matchup against Rochester Century to end the season. The Cougars must win this game in order to win the conference outright.

Owatonna, on the other hand, has what should be an easy matchup against Red Wing to end its season. The Huskies are 6-2 in February and have played well this season against its difficult schedule. This game may not be the game of the week, but it has massive playoff implications for both teams moving forward.

Minnetonka (18-6) at Totino-Grace (16-7), 3/1 at 7 p.m.

Minnetonka, 3-2 in its last five, travels to face Totino-Grace, a team with its eyes on the playoffs on Wednesday.

Minnetonka’s schedule the last month has been brutal, and it winds down the season with likely it toughest test of the season. The Skippers are battling Buffalo for second place in the Lake Conference and need this game for favorable playoff seeding.

Totino-Grace is also battling for second place in its conference. The Eagles may have to win out to keep pace with Andover, a team it faces the last week of the season. The Eagles have been inconsistent all season and need to hit their stride against Minnetonka.

Photo by Earl Ebensteiner

Photo by Earl Ebensteiner

DeLaSalle (21-4) at Wayzata (19-4), 2/28 at 7 p.m.

DeLaSalle travels to face Wayzata in the SBLive boys basketball game of the week on Tuesday.

DeLaSalle has won fourteen straight games and a comfortable lead in its conference with only this game remaining. This game will be more indicative of the Islanders ability to play with elite level talent. The Islanders have played a much easier schedule than Wayzata and will need to rely on senior guard Nasir Whitlock in order to pull off the upset.

Wayzata, also a conference leader by a wide margin, has state title hopes. The Trojans had previously won fifteen straight games before a surprising loss to Eden Prairie. The Trojans rebounded well the past two weeks, defeating Minnetonka and Minneapolis North by a combined 191-132.

Edina (14-10) at Hopkins (16-8), 3/3 at 7 p.m.

Edina and Hopkins wrap up the top five boys basketball games of the week in Minnesota.

Edina has rattled off a solid month, going 5-3. The Hornets defeated a great Buffalo team, a solid White Bear Lake team, and only lost by one point to Minnetonka. The Hornets are battling for playoff seeding with Minnetonka and Hopkins and will need this one.

Hopkins has struggled the second half of their schedule. The Royals were on a massive hot streak early in the season, but they have gone 5-7 since starting the season 11-1. The Royals could be a solid playoff team, but they need to recapture their early season momentum.

Photo by Earl Ebensteiner

Photo by Earl Ebensteiner

Girls basketball

Litchfield (14-12) at New London-Spicer (25-1), 2/28 at 7 p.m.

Litchfield and New London-Spicer face off in the Class 2A Section 3 semifinal on Tuesday.

Litchfield is 7-3 dating back to the end of January after starting the season 7-9. The Dragons lost to New London-Spicer 49-37 on January 27, but are a much more cohesive team than a month ago.

New London-Spicer sits at 25-1 on the season and are a top team in its class. The Wildcats only loss was to Crosby-Ironton ten days ago. The Wildcats have dominated opponents, outscoring them by a margin of 617-380.

Park of Cottage Grove (11-15) at Eagan (16-10), 3/1 at 7 p.m.

Park of Cottage Grove and Eagan face off in the SBLive game of the week in the Class 4A, Section 3 quarterfinal.

Park of Cottage Grove has struggled this season, but it has hung around with teams like Stillwater and White Bear Lake. The Wolfpack have a very balanced starting lineup and solid bench contributors in order to make a run at a susceptible Eagan team

Eagan sits at 16-10 on the season and has a similar resume to Park of Cottage Grove. The Wildcats defeated Park of Cottage Grove back on January 3, 59-52. The Wildcats also lost close matchups with both Stillwater and White Bear Lake.

This game could well be an upset in the making.

Mound Westonka (12-15) at Delano (20-6), 3/1 at 7 p.m.

Mound Westonka and Delano match up in the Class 3A, Section 6 quarterfinal on Wednesday.

Mound Westonka is on a cold streak, going 3-6 in the last month. The Whitehawks have had some bad luck against some solid teams in the past month, but they have struggled to finish games. Mound Westonka previously lost to Delano 58-50 on January 24.

Delano is 11-2 since January 10 and are one of the hottest teams in the state. The Tigers have played some very close games with the best teams on their schedule, but they have come up short in most of them. Mound Westonka could pull an upset here, but Delano likely advances.

Hutchinson (9-17) at Orono (14-12), 3/1 at 7 p.m.

Hutchinson and Orono meet on Wednesday in the Class 3A, Section 6 quarterfinal.

Hutchinson has had a season to forget and have struggled throughout the season and have had one of the worst two months in the entire state. The Tigers, to their credit, have victories over North St. Paul, Mound Westonka and Delano on the season. Orono poses a similar challenge to Hutchinson as those teams.

Orono started the season off cold but have turned it on late in the season. Freshman guard Mya Moore leads the Spartans and has a great opportunity moving forward to be a force in girls basketball in the state.

Mankato West (11-15) at Mankato East (19-6), 2/28 at 7 p.m.

The rivalry between Mankato West and Mankato East is rekindled in the Section Class 3A, Section 2 title game.

Mankato West and Mankato East faced off two times this season with Mankato East coming out on top 59-46 and 66-47.

Mankato West will likely struggle again in this tough matchup, but all bets are off in this rivalry game, especially with the stakes at hand.