Three Ironmen make all-region

by Tom Coombe
All winter long, the Vermilion Ironmen leaned on a talented trio of sophomores.
Demetrice Mitchell, Denario Jackson and Bradlee Lewis dominated an array of statistical categories and formed what head coach Paul McDonald called “a three-headed monster” for the Ironmen.
Those efforts were noticed by league coaches, who placed all three on the 10-member All-Region Team, which was announced earlier this month.
It was an impressive feat for the trio as well as the Vermilion program.
“There are 10 guys who make it and we had three of them,” said McDonald. “It was the first time in a long time that we had three guys on the all-region team.”
Combined, no team in Minnesota got the contribution from three players as Vermilion did from Mitchell, Jackson and Lewis.
“Those guys carried us basically,” said McDonald. “Basically they gave us 60 points and 25 rebounds a night.”
All three hail from the Twin Cities area and Mitchell, a St. Paul native, led VCC in scoring with 22 points per night and was the state’s top rebounder. He snared 11 rebounds per contest.
Jackson, who is from Maple Grove but attended Tartan High School in suburban St. Paul, led the state in both assists (8.7 per game) and steals (4.2) and was one of the flashiest players in the league. He also provided plenty of offense, scoring 15 points per game.
Minneapolis native Lewis was one of the league’s most prolific three-point shooters.
He scored 18 points per game and hit a whopping 112 long-range bombs this season. His frequent shooting sprees helped the Ironmen to a second-place finish in the Northern Division and a fourth-place showing at the state tournament.
Vermilion finished 20-10 on the year.
The end of the season did not mark the end of the college basketball careers for VCC’s talented trio. All are looking to continue their careers next year at four-year schools.
“All three will play at the next level,” said McDonald. “Where remains to be seen. A couple were on visits here last week when we were on spring break. “We’ll get them placed somewhere in the country at a place where they can play at. We’re going to miss them that’s for sure.”