Basketball: Thunder boys cap run to GRC title beating Foley 69-35

The Thunder players and coaches grouped after the game so parents could snap photos of the Granite Ridge champions. (Photo by Mary Foyt)


The Zimmerman Thunder wrapped up the Granite Ridge Conference championship with a 69-35 conquest of the Foley Falcons on Friday evening in Foley.

‘Caleb Lunning sank 13 points, Kyle Connelly 11 and Nate Christensen and Gavin Doppler 10 each for the Thunder. Tyler Templin had 11 for Foley.

Zimmerman, which lost its opener in the newly-formed conference to Little Falls 105-86 in December, never lost again, finishing 11-1. St. Cloud Cathedral was second at 10-2 with both losses to the Thunder.

The Thunder, at 22-4, tied the team record for most wins — they¬† were 22-9 last year when they went to “state” — and have clinched the school record for best winning percentage.

They will now compete in Class 3A for the first time, opening Section 7AAA with a home game Friday. Pairings are not announced yet, but it appears they’ll be seeded third and host Couquet.¬† By the latest QRF ratings, the pairings would be No. 9 North Branch (3-23) vs. No. 8 Chisago Lakes (5-21) in the pigtail game Wednesday, with the winner at No. 1 Grand Rapids (21-5) on Friday along with No. 7 Chisago Lakes (5-21) at No. 2 Duluth Denfeld (19-7), No. 6 Cloquet (9-17) at No. 3 Zimmerman (22-4), and No. 5 Princeton 14-11) at No. 4 Hermantown (17-9).

Granite Ridge final standings

Zimmerman 11-1
St. Cloud Cathedral 10-2
Little Falls 8-3
Princeton 6-5
Mora 3-9
Foley 3-9
MIlaca 0-12