Paul Perez was more than a lifelong member of the athletic community in Coon Rapids.
Perez, 59, was heavily involved in the Coon Rapids Athletic Association and Coon Rapids National Little League as coach, official and administrator for more than four decades. He died as a result of diabetes complications June 30.
Last season Andover upset St. Francis in the Section 7AAAA semifinal before winning its fourth section title in program history.
Anoka and Andover contests are often close, no matter the sport or the situation. No. 2 seed Andover (13-12), the defending Section 7AAAA champions, held on for a 64-61 win against No. 6 seed Anoka, March 5.
Blaine led top-seed St. Francis early in the Section 7AAAA semifinal but a combination of making shots under pressure and generating turnovers at the right time helped the Saints earn a 68-54 win and a spot in the finals.
Anoka-Ramsey Community College mens basketball earned a trip to nationals for only the second time in program history. The No. 4 (MCAC South Division) seeded Golden Rams (23-8) upset three higher ranked teams to win the MCAC/Region XIII Tournament on its home court in Coon Rapids.