Wrenshall falls, Chisholm, MIB advance to Section 7A basketball finalTaylor Skoglund stood on the sidelines watching, a victim of a shoulder separation, as his Chisholm High School football team played in the state tournament last fall.
By: Rick Weegman, Duluth News Tribune, Pine Journal
Taylor Skoglund stood on the sidelines watching, a victim of a shoulder separation, as his Chisholm High School football team played in the state tournament last fall.
The senior is determined not to miss out on the boys basketball state tournament.
Skoglund, a 6-foot-4 forward, scored 13 points and played impeccable defense as Chisholm manhandled Wrenshall 56-26 in a Section 7A semifinal Wednesday night at Romano Gym. The Bluestreaks (28-1) advance to play Mountain Iron-Buhl in Friday’s final at Romano, in an effort to return to the state tournament for a second consecutive year.
“I want this more than anything I’ve ever wanted, even more than last year,” said Skoglund, Chisholm’s leading scorer with a 19.4-point-per-game average. “We want to show that a team from northern Minnesota can go down and do something.”
If there’s any team that might, it’s the Bluestreaks. And Skoglund is the main reason why. The athletic wingman is fluid on offense and smart on defense, seemingly always finding his way in the opponent’s passing lane.
A talented wide receiver as well, Skoglund separated his right shoulder diving into the end zone to score a touchdown in last fall’s playoffs. That forced him to watch the Bluestreaks’ 55-8 loss to Lake Park-Audubon in the Class A quarterfinals.
Expected to be out eight weeks, Skoglund returned in about three and didn’t even miss a practice. Chisholm basketball coach Bob McDonald was glad to see him back on the court.
“He’s very important because he keys everything,” said McDonald, who won his 916th game in a 54-year coaching career. “Some people think he should score more, but he’s busy setting things up. He rebounds very well, and is the crux of our defense.”
That defense forced numerous turnovers in the first half and silenced any chance of an upset by the Wrens (14-10).
“Our press and defensive pressure gives us our offensive thrust,” McDonald said.
Or, as Skoglund said, more directly: “Our press takes teams apart.”
Wrenshall missed all six 3-point attempts in the first half and trailed 28-8 at halftime.
“If you put up eight points, shooting about 20 percent in the first half, you can’t expect to come back and win,” Wrens coach Joel Swanson said.
The second half wasn’t much better with Chisholm building a 35-point lead before taking out Skoglund and the rest of the starters.
Wrenshall — John Moder 9, David Conley 2, Jordan Berglund 5, Brennin O’Brien 4, Aaron Gustafson 2, Josh Jacobson 4. Totals 11 3-6 26.
3-point goal — Moder.
Chisholm — Sioka Latu 4, Brad Pervenanze 4, Erik Paine 8, Tyler Simonson 6, Brian Arola 9, Adam Vake 8, Taylor Skoglund 13, Eric Sushoreba 2, Peter Zunich 2. Totals 24 6-10 56.
3-point goals — Simonson, Arola.