Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Another Way to Look at PeeWee A Hockey - March 2

By frederick61

Five months ago, over a hundred PeeWee A teams opened their Minnesota hockey seasons. Last week 99 of those teams started their district playoffs. The district playoffs ended this past Sunday and 32 teams survived. This week, the four regional tourneys start. Each opening game for each regional tourney will be at 2:00 Friday afternoon. The North Regional will be played at Moorhead; the South Regional will be played at Rochester; the East Regional will be played at Anoka; and the West Regional will be played at St. Cloud.

An interest point this year is that all the regional host associations have their PeeWee A team in their regional, Moorhead/Moorhead Black, Rochester/Rochester Red, Anoka/Anoka, and St. Cloud/St. Cloud.

The following 32 teams advanced (listed by their district).

The District 2 playoff champion is White Bear Lake. Mahtomedi is the #2 seed and Tartan is the #3 seed. Mahtomedi and Tartan’s appearance in this year’s regional means that all of the eight original D2 associations have made regional appearances in the last four years (including the North St. Paul). With a total of 11 seeds available to D2 in those four years, that is a balanced league. The one new association this year, Highland, made the regionals three of those four years as a D1 representative.

The District 3 playoff champion is Wayzata. Osseo/Maple Grove is the #2 seed. Wayzata ran away with the league when it came to winning games. The Trojans won 15 of 16 games in regular season. They had one tie game (Mpls Storm 0-0). But the Trojans lost 6 “unfairplay” points (the equivalent of 3 games) and that turned D3 into a 3 team race with OMG and the Mpls Storm.

D3 officially added three teams this year (Mpls Strom, Crow River, and Mound Westonka) and St. Louis Park fielded a peewee A team (splitting from the Mpls Park team last year). That grew D3 from 5 teams a few years ago to 9 teams. The bonus is the new Mpls Storm, Armstrong, and Crow River all had strong years. These D3 moves make the league more competitive in the future.

The District 4 playoff champion is Luverne. No other teams advance from D4. Luverne team has to be admired for their efforts to play competitive Minnesota Hockey. To play a home and home schedule with the two other D4 teams, Redwood Falls and Marshall plus a D9 West Division schedule, the Cardinals had to travel an average of 270 miles to play away weekend games. And they played in Fergus Falls tourney (400 miles round trip) and in Owatonna’s tourney (350 miles round trip). They almost took the D9 West Division title, losing out to Mankato the last day of regular season play.

The District 5 playoff champion is St. Cloud. St. Michael/Albertville took the #2 seed and Sartell took the #3 seed. D5 added teams and lost teams this year. St. Cloud and Sauk Rapids were the new peewee A teams in D5. Crow River and Mound/Westonka left for D3. St. Cloud had a near perfect season their first season in D5. They won all 18 games and to took 53 out of a possible 54 points. But what started easy became tougher as the season progressed for the Huskies. The Huskies won their first 9 D15 games by an average score of 8-1 and their last 9 by an average score of 6-1+. Sauk Rapids played in a district tourney for the first time in a few years and showed they could compete.

The District 6 playoff champion is Edina. Burnsville took the #2 seed and Eden Prairie the #3 seed. This season, in the end, paralleled last season. The only difference is Burnsville took the #1 seed and Edina the #2 seed. Eden Prairie has taken third the last two years. Prior Lake and Minnetonka made runs, but lost at the end of the season. Jefferson put things together at the end of the year, but finally lost to Burnsville in their fourth playoff game in four days. Go Jags, next year. D6 had five top teams and then five teams that struggled. The five that struggled showed promise at the end of the year.

The District 8 playoff champion is Farmington. Rosemount took the #2 seed and in a surprise, Lakeville North took the #3 seed. Lakeville South won the play-in game beating Mankato 9-3 to take D4’s #2 seed. Farmington has played “like a rock” all season, never panicking and always in the game.

The District 9 playoff champion is Rochester Red, a team that decline to play D9 regular season games. The #2 seed went to a surprising Northfield and the #3 seed to Owatonna. Mankato won the fourth seed and the right to play the play-in game. The Rochester Red should not be in the regional tourney representing D9 after declining to play a regular season schedule. Rochester’s reason for doing so is that the D9 teams offered them “no competition”.

The District 10 playoff champion is Elk River. Blaine took the #2 seed and Anoka took the #3 seed. Centennial did not make it out of the D10 playoffs. The Cougars lost a key game to Blaine with an ineligible player (who had played the opening game of the playoffs won by Centennial) benched for that game. That created some controversy. The problems were caused by adults interpreting rules and the rule has no stated purpose (in this case to many penalties in a game).

The District 11 playoff champion is Hermantown. The #2 seed went to Duluth East. This D11 had a similar player ineligibility problem where the player played. Only the adults in D11 chose to have Proctor forfeit their win over the Duluth Lakers. It resulted in the Rails having to play Duluth East six hours after the forfeit was announced. The Rails lost. So they went from celebrating a good win for them to losing two games and being eliminated from the playoffs in six hours. The Vikings could have used the D11 adults in New Orleans last year.

The District 12 playoff champion is Grand Rapids. Hibbing took the #2 seed and Virginia (in a surprise) took the #3 seed. The Thunder now roll into Moorhead.

The District 15 playoff champion is Moorhead Black. Fergus Falls took the #2 seed. The adults were at work again earlier this month in D15. Moorhead Black had scheduled only 13 D15 regular season games (others played 14 games). The Moorhead association had the Moorhead Orange team forfeit their two D15 games to the Black at the start of the season and Little Falls later forfeited. Even though the Black won all 10 games they played, the three forfeits cost them their “unfairplay” points. As the season ended, Alexandria was closing in on the Black. A first place finish in D15 this year meant an automatic seed to the North Regional. So the adults declared the last game the Black played with Northern Lakes (the only Northern Lakes game on the schedule) as two games and worth four points.

Of course, that was probably the plan all year, just that people didn’t know that and that was their fault. Of course, the winner and loser could get only one “unfairplay” point for the actual game played. The loss of the “unfairplay” point may have cost Northern Lakes the #7 seed. The Lightning ended up with the #8 seed and lost to the Black in the opening playoff game. Little Falls, the #7 seed, beat Alexandria in the opening game 3-2. That upset was part of the reason Alex did not make it out of the D15 playoffs.

Each coin has two sides. There is arrogance if the adults only see one side. The kids see things like this quickly and see it as unfair.

The District 16 playoff champion is Bemidji. Thief River Falls took the #2 seed and East Grand Forks took the #3 seed.

North Regional (D12, D15, D16) - The North Regional was set a week ago. Last week, one of the favorites to take a seed to state, Bemidji, beat Detroit Lakes 5-1 in pre-Regional tune-up. The tournament will be played in Moorhead. All regional tourneys will open at 2:00 on Friday afternoon, March 4th.

Grand Rapids opens the tourney against Fergus Falls. Bemidji plays Virginia in the second game of the upper bracket. The Thunderhawks and the Otters have not met this year. Grand Rapids has a 13-5-1 record since the first of the year. Their five losses have been to Bemidji 4-3, Moorhead 3-1, Edina 11-2, Woodbury 5-3, and Hermantown 4-2. They tied Bemidji 3-3. The Otters have gone 7-2 in February. They lost to the Fargo Flyers Gold 12-4 and Moorhead 9-0. Grand Rapids should win the first game.

Bemidji and Virginia have not played each other either. Bemidji has lost five games this year (Edina twice, Thief River Falls, St. Cloud, and Farmington). The Lumberjacks have played solid hockey all year. Virginia has struggled all year. But the Blue Devils put things together at the right time and beat Mesabi East (on home ice) and Greenway for their regional ticket. Unfortunately, Virginia draws the North Regional favorite in their opener. Bemidji should win.

That would set up a Grand Rapids/Bemidji semifinal. The two teams have met twice this year. Bemidji won the first meeting 4-3. The two teams tied 3-3 three weeks ago. It will be a tough game, but the Thunder rolls on this game. Grand Rapids wins. Fergus Falls and Virginia would meet in a loser goes home game. These two teams have not met this season and have played few common opponents. It shapes up to be a toss-up, but the nod goes to the Otters.

The Moorhead Black plays East Grand Forks and Thief River Falls plays Hibbing in the lower bracket. The Black beat the Green Wave twice this season 5-3 and 3-2. The Black lost their last two regular season games to Wayzata at home, 5-3 and 6-2. EGF has struggled in 2011 playing just over .500 hockey. The Black win.

Thief River Falls had a great start to the season, but have played under .500 hockey in 2011. The Prowlers and the Bluejackets have not met this season. Hibbing has played well since finishing second in the Mariucci Tourney (losing to Mahtomedi 4-3) in mid-January. The Bluejackets are 7-2-1 in the 10 games since and have showed improvement. That is always a good sign at regional time, but the Prowlers should win.

That sets up Moorhead Black and TRF in the lower bracket semifinal game. The Black and the Prowlers have split their two season games, the Black losing 7-6 and winning 3-2. Both games were overtime games. The Black home ice advantage should help. Moorhead Black wins. East Grand Forks and Hibbing met in the loser goes home game. The Green Wave own an early season 6-1 win over Hibbing. This is a tough game to call, but EGF gets the nod.

The second set of loser goes home games are played Saturday evening. If everything goes to form (and if you believe that will happen, there’s some nice buildable land of Highway 72 that’s for sale), Fergus Falls would play Thief River Falls and EGF would play Bemidji. TRF has two regular season wins over the Otters, 7-1 and 6-2. The games were played around the first of the year. The Prowlers should win. Bemidji has beaten the Green Wave three times this year 6-1, 5-3, and 6-4. To beat a good team four times in a season is always tough, but tough describes the Lumberjack team this year. Bemidji wins.

Sunday morning, Bemidji and TRF play in a loser goes home game. These two teams have played three times also. The Prowlers won the first game in early December 3-0, lost the second game in late January 4-3 in overtime, and lost the D16 championship game 4-0 two weeks ago. Bemidji wins.

The second game Sunday would match Grand Rapids and Moorhead Black in another tough game to call. These two teams played each other in the Roseau tourney at the end of January. Moorhead won 3-1. That was neutral ice. The Black win to take the #1 seed.

In the Sunday afternoon game for the #2 seed to the state, Bemidji would play Grand Rapids. Bemidji wins their second meeting in the regional. Never give a tough team a second chance. Moorhead Black takes the #1 seed and Bemidji takes the #2 seed to the state tourney.

South Regional (D4, D8, D9) - The South Regional is shaping up as follows: In the South Regional opening round games at Rochester, Farmington plays Lakeville South and Rochester Red plays Lakeville North in the upper bracket. Luverne plays Owatonna and Northfield plays Rosemount in the lower bracket.

The South Regional looks like a D8 mini-tourney for the two regional seeds this year. That is something nobody could have predicted a year ago when the draw was set.

Farmington won the D8 regular season and won the D8 playoffs. But they play the rest of the season with 12 players and will be going with three kids on defense. But they play a great defense. All three are outstanding players. Lakeville South is a young team and should be dominant in the next year.

The Tigers and the Cougars have played twice in the last month. In late January, the Tigers won 9-1 and in the D8 playoff semifinals, the Tigers won again 2-1 in overtime. It should be close again. But the nod goes to Farmington and their tough defense.

In the second South Regional game on Friday afternoon, Rochester Red and Lakeville North meet. Rochester teams normally close strong at the end of the season. This year is no different, the Red have won their last 6 games since losing to Hibbing 3-1 two weeks ago. Lakeville North played with a short bench most of the last month, but had all their players back for the D8 playoffs. It showed as they beat Woodbury 3-2 to end the Predators season. Rochester has the home advantage. But the nod goes to the Panthers in a tough game.

In Saturday’s first semifinal game, Farmington would play Lakeville North. The Tigers beat the Panthers 5-1 at the end of January when the North had the short bench. The game will be closer, but Farmington wins. Lakeville South and Rochester Red would meet in the loser goes home game. The Red should lose, Lakeville South beat them 3-1 in their only meeting in the Eden Prairie turkey day tourney. But the nod goes to the Red because of home ice.

Owatonna and Luverne meet in the opening round of play Friday evening. The three teams played early in the season. Luverne won the first two games 8-6 and 5-4. The Cardinals lost the third game 6-4. But they have not played each other since early December. Both teams will be prepared to play this game; they have been in the past. Owatonna should win. In the second game Friday evening, Rosemount plays Northfield. This will be an interesting game. The Raiders have a full team and won their last seven games before losing to Rochester Red 7-1 in the D9 championship game. They have a tune-up game against Apple Valley before the tourney. Rosemount is one of the top teams in the state and should win.

In Saturday’s second semifinal game, Rosemount would play Owatonna in the first meeting between these two teams this year. The Huskies will need to find a “higher gear” to match the Irish speed to win. But it sets up a possible Saturday evening match with Rochester Red again. Luverne and Northfield would meet in a loser go home game. The two teams have not played each other this year. A deeper bench should help the Raiders to a win.

The Owatonna/Rochester Red game Saturday evening would be the third game between these two teams this year. It would be a loser go home game. The Red has won the two games, 9-0 and 7-1 and should win again. But the Huskies can be tough and it is hard to beat a tough team three times in a season. The second game would match Northfield against Lakeville North. These two teams match-up in size and style of play and it should be a close game. The Panthers win.

Rochester and Lakeville North would then meet for the second time in the tourney Sunday morning. North prevails. Farmington and Rosemount have a repeat of the D8 playoff finals played last Sunday. Farmington won 2-1. Both teams will be tired; both are playing with short benches. The Tigers win again.

That sets up a Lakeville North/Rosemount game for the last South seed to the state. The two teams have met twice. Rosemount beat North 7-0 in the Bloomington tourney and beat them 7-1 in regular season play. But this may be Lakeville North’s year. The Panthers win.

Farmington takes the #1 seed and Lakeville North the #2 seed.

East Regional (D2, D10, D11) - The East Regional is set as follows: In opening round Friday, White Bear Lake plays Duluth East and Elk River plays Tartan in the upper bracket. Hermantown plays Anoka and Blaine plays Mahtomedi in the lower bracket. The games will be played at Anoka.

The East Regional is full of surprises this year. The D2 playoffs produced two with Mahtomedi and Tartan winning seeds. Mahtomedi was seeded 8th and Tartan was seeded 4th in the district playoffs. In D10, the #6 seeded Anoka won a regional seed. In D11, the #3 seeded Duluth East took one of the two D11 regional seeds.

Seeds in hockey are a reasonably accurate predictor of tourneys outcome, more so then in other sports. Starting this week, in the Boys High School hockey tourney, 17 of the 18 Class A and Class AA sectionals have the #1 seed remaining, 13 of the sectionals have the #1 and #2 team remaining, and 9 of the sectionals will have the #1 and #2 seeds in the championship game. Only one sectional, Class A Section 6 has no #1 or #2 seed in the championship game (#3 Willmar plays #5 Alexandria).

White Bear Lake and Duluth East open the East Regional Friday afternoon. These two teams have played each other three times. Early in the season, the Hounds beat the Bears 3-2. In the past month, the Hounds lost to the Bears 5-4 and beat the Bears 4-2. Duluth East played in the White Bear Lake’s tourney the first week in February and struggled, losing to Eden Prairie 9-1 and Elk River 5-1 before beating Lakeville South 6-1. The Bears also struggled in their tourney, losing to Blaine 3-2, beating Winnipeg 4-1 and losing big to Edina 10-0 in a penalty marred game. In another tough call, the Bears get the nod. Both teams will be prepared to play this game.

Elk River owns a very early season 10-1 win over Tartan and the Elks have been playing well in the past few weeks stringing 7 wins together. Five of those wins are over teams that made the Regionals (OMG, Anoka, STMA, St. Cloud, and Blaine). The 8-3 win over Blaine in the D10 championship game was impressive. They also won their last 10 league games. Tartan played in the Super Rink turkey day tourney (did not place), Hudson’s tourney (took 3rd place), Northfield’s tourney (won), and Red Wing’s tourney (won consolation title). Elk River played in Eden Prairie’s tourney (did not place), Duluth’s tourney (won 3rd place), Edina’s tourney (did not place), and White Bear’s tourney (won 3rd place). The two teams meet in the regionals after traveling different development roads. It will be an interesting game, but the Elks should win.

On Saturday, Elk River would play White Bear Lake in one semifinal game. The Elks lost to the Bears 5-3 in the Eden Prairie turkey day tourney in their only meeting of the season. But the Bears have been an up and down team. The Elks should win. Duluth East and Tartan would play in the loser goes home game Saturday. The two teams have not played each other this year. Both teams have similar size and style and it will come down to desire. The Titans have really “hung in there” in the D2 playoffs. They get the nod here.

In Friday evening’s first game will be a dandy. Hermantown plays Anoka on the Tornadoes home ice. The Hawks took a quick tour of the cities on Valentine’s Day weekend and ended up getting beat by two D3 teams, Armstrong 4-2 and OMG 4-1. They returned home to beat Grand Rapids 4-2 and sweep the D11 playoffs. Anoka has won 10 of their last 14 games and has proven to be a tough tourney team. They won the Spring Lake Park tourney beating Shakopee, Mahtomedi, and Spring Lake Park, lost to Burnsville 3-1 in the Star of the North championship game in Grand Rapids (after beating Duluth East 8-4 in the opening game), and won their own tourney beating Rosemount in the Championship game 3-2. On their home ice Friday, the Tornadoes win.

Friday evening’s second game matches Blaine and Mahtomedi. Blaine has been an up and down team and has sprung some surprises this season, most notably is their 5-4 win over Wayzata in the Duluth tourney in mid-December. Unfortunately they lost the next day to Rosemount 7-0. In the White Bear Tourney a few weeks ago, they lost a tough game to Edina 11-0. The Bengals are better than that. Mahtomedi showed potential in the Spring Lake Park tourney in November, especially in their forwards passing and scoring. The Zephyrs had it all working in the D2 playoffs plus good defense. The Bengals should win, but a Zephyr win would not be surprising. Hermantown and Mahtomedi would then play in the loser goes home game. The two teams have not played each other this year. Hermantown should win.

Saturday’s semifinal game would match two D10 teams, Anoka and Blaine. Blaine has beaten Anoka three times this year. The Bengals won 3-2 and 5-2 in regular season play and beat Anoka 3-1 in the D10 playoffs a week ago. But this game will be at Anoka in front a good crowd and it is tough to beat a good team four times in a season. The Tornadoes win.

Saturday’s two evening games would have Tartan playing Blaine and Hermantown playing White Bear Lake. Tartan and Blaine will be playing each other for the first time this year, the Bengals should win. Hermantown and White Bear Lake have not played each other either. The Hawks win.

Sunday’s championship game would match Elk River and Anoka, two D10 foes. The Elks took first, Anoka placed sixth in the regular season. The Elks took first in the D10 playoffs and Anoka took third coming from behind. The Elks have beaten Anoka 5-4 and 5-3 this season. But this game will have the fans screaming over the balcony seats at the Anoka Arena. Anoka wins.

Sunday morning, Blaine and Hermantown play a loser go home game. Though they have played a lot of common foes, they have not played each other. Hermantown was a little stung losing to Armstrong and OMG two weeks ago. They beat the Bengals.

In the final East Regional on Sunday, Elk River and Hermantown meet. These two teams have not met this year. The Elks beat the Hawks to take the #2 seed.

In the East Regional, Anoka takes the #1 seed and Elk River the #2 seed.

West Regional (D3, D5, D6) - The West Regional is set as follows: In the afternoon games at St. Cloud on Friday, St. Cloud plays OMG and Edina plays Sartell in the upper bracket. Wayzata plays Eden Prairie and Burnsville plays STMA in the lower bracket.

This region had a game of musically chairs going on and when Eden Prairie sat down, the Eagles drew Wayzata. The other D6 teams had a sigh of relief. But it is peewee hockey, who knows what will happen on the ice. “The Shadow knows”. Only kids who listen to old time radio would understand that. How many old-timers can still hear the creaking door of the “inner sanctum”? Could be the entrance of the Torrey Arena for some teams.

St. Cloud and OMG will open the Friday afternoon games. The Huskies and OMG have played once this year, at the end of December. OMG won 3-2. St. Cloud has lost only 7 games all season (49 played) and have lost once (to Elk River 3-0) since the Geyer Tourney 17 games ago. St. Cloud had a near perfect D5 season and swept the playoffs. OMG entered the D3 playoffs on a down note. At the White Bear Lake tourney the first week of February, they lost their last three games (Centennial, Eden Prairie, and Elk River). They lost close games. OMG opened the D3 playoffs by losing to the Mpls Storm 3-1. They came back beating Hopkins, Armstrong, and the Storm in the game for D3’s #2 regional seed. Another tough game to predict, OMG wins the opener at Torrey Arena.

Edina and Sartell play in the second game Friday afternoon. Most people would pass on watching this game, a David versus Goliath affair. It is worth watching. A year ago, Orono and STMA emerged with good peewee A teams. Edina scheduled STMA and after a frustrating first period, beat the Knights by double digits. That game helped STMA overcome the David versus Goliath syndrome. Sartell will be challenged and will certainly be the crowd favorite especially with St. Cloud playing the game before they play.

Edina is always good, but this year they showed tremendous improvement when they lost to Burnsville at Burnsville at the end of the year 5-4. They swept the D6 playoffs beating Prior Lake and Burnsville twice but played as a more ordinary Edina team. The D6 playoffs seemed down this year.

At one point this past month, the Hornets beat Kennedy, Jefferson, Waconia, Blaine, and White Bear Lake by a total score of 52-1. They will be a powerhouse in the West Regional. Sartell has a few rocks for their slingshot. The Sabres struggled prior to the playoffs. Sartell finished fourth in D5, but they came through with a key win over an improving MAML team to take the #3 D5 seed. The Hornets win.

That sets up an OMG/Edina semifinal. OMG’s defense has improved over the season. They have shutout or held their opponents to one goal in six of their last eight games. They will need that defense against the Hornets. Edina’s offense is parallels the F-18 fighter also called the Hornet. The F-18 is a multirole aircraft, air and ground. Edina’s offense is like that. They can strike quick especially on penalty kills and score. Or they can “grind it out” in their offensive zone and score. Edina wins again.

St. Cloud and Sartell would play the loser goes home game in a hometown game for both teams. St. Cloud has beaten Sartell four times this season 6-0, 5-1, 6-2, and 4-1 (in the D5 playoffs). It is always tough to win five games against a good team in hockey, but the Huskies should win.

Wayzata and Eden Prairie meet in Friday evening’s first game of the opening round. The Trojans have beaten the Eagles three times this year, 7-2 in October, 4-3 in the Eagles turkey day tourney and 8-1 in the Edina tourney. The Trojans have won 17 of their last 18 games losing only to Edina 6-1 in the Roseau tourney championship game. Eden Prairie is 3-6-1 in their last 10 games. The strong defense that the Eagles had early in the season has softened. The Trojans win.

In the second Friday evening game, Burnsville and STMA meet. These two teams have not played each other this year. The Blaze went undefeated in their first 25 games of the season. Since losing to Rosemount in the championship round of the Bloomington tourney, the Blaze has gone 10-8-1. The losses have been to tough teams (two to Farmington, two to Edina, Minnetonka, Prior Lake, Eden Prairie and St. Cloud). STMA had a great trip to Thief River Falls and Warroad at the end of January beating TRF 3-2 on their home ice and winning the Warroad tourney (beating two North Dakota State Tourney teams Devils Lake and the Fargo Angels). The Knights have not fared well since that trip, losing four of their last seven games. The Blaze should win.

In Saturday’s semifinal game, Wayzata would play the Burnsville. They have not played each other this season. At this point, it is a real toss-up. The Trojans have the edge in offense, especially the ability to score. They win. Eden Prairie and STMA meet in the loser goes home game. Eden Prairie’s defense has been faltering and will continue to do so at Torrey. STMA wins.

The opening loser goes home game on Saturday evening would match Burnsville and St. Cloud. These two teams have played each other before in the Geyer Tourney at Torrey. Both games were tight with St. Cloud jumping out to 1-0 and then 2-0 leads. In the first game, the Blaze came back to tie the Huskies 2-2. In the second game for third place, the Huskies hung on to win 3-1. The Blaze win this time, holding the Huskies off the board early in the game.

The second game matches OMG and STMA in a CAPITAL Letters game. The two teams have played to a tie in their only meeting this season and are similar in the type of game they play. This time the old zinc penny came out. OMG won the coin flip. But the sentiment is for STMA to advance.

Sunday morning, Edina and Wayzata would meet for the West Regional championship and the #1 west seed to the state tourney. This will be the sixth meeting between the Trojans and the Hornets. Edina won the October game 3-1, Wayzata beat Edina at Eden Prairie Turkey day tourney 3-2, Edina beat Wayzata 7-6 at the Duluth tourney in December, Wayzata won 4-3 in mid-January, and Edina won 6-1 in the White Bear Lake tourney in early February. These two teams know each other and it will be a great game. Edina has shown improvement at the end of the season, Wayzata has struggled a little. The Edina 6-1 win at White Bear Lake was no fluke. Edina wins their 50th game of the season.

OMG and Burnsville would play another loser goes home game on Sunday morning. These two teams have not met. Another tough game, but the edge goes to the Blaze. That sets up a rematch between Wayzata and Burnsville for the #2 seed early Sunday evening at Torrey in St. Cloud. The Blaze have been there before, Sunday-Torrey-second game of the day-championship on the line. In fact they have been playing these types of games in the Geyer for the last five years. The Blaze win.
Edina takes the #1 West seed and Burnsville takes the #2 West seed.

If you have read this far, here is a bonus. Minnesota Hockey has set the state tourney draw to be played at Bloomington. If these predictions hold (and if you believe that, there is that buildable land off of Highway 72 south of Baudette), the opening round of the state tourney would be:

In the upper bracket, Anoka would play Burnsville and Farmington would play Bemidji. In the lower bracket, Edina would play Elk River and Moorhead Black would play Lakeville North. It would be a different state tourney.

No comments:

Post a Comment