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Article: MSHSL Girls Hockey Section Finals Preview

MSHSL Girls Hockey
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#1 Giles Ferrell

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Posted 10 February 2016 - 10:17 AM

With the State Tournament in Girls High School Hockey next week (February 17-20), this week will mark the end of all the sectional tournaments around the state. With most of the section finals all set to take place, lets preview who all is left as state tournament hopefuls.Class A

Section 1 Final (Thursday February 11, 7 PM, Owatonna Four Season Center)

#1 Northfield (18-9-0) vs #3 Owatonna (19-8-0)

Outlook: Owatonna upset #2 seeded Red Wing in overtime on Saturday night, thanks to a Margo Achterkirch goal 1:42 into the extra session. Northfield, on the other hand, has won 10 consecutive games entering Thursday's final, but they did lose previously to Owatonna earlier in the year (2-1 on December 12).

Section 2 Final (Thursday February 11, 7:30 PM, Gustavus Adolphus College)

#1 New Prague (16-9-1) vs #2 Mound Westonka (17-5-3)

Outlook: Mound Westonka strugled at the end of the season (2-2-2), but still managed to make it through the first two games of the section tournament without allowing a single goal (7-0, 1-0). New Prague is coming off a 6-1 win over New Ulm on Saturday, in their only game of the playoffs so far (first round bye). The teams split their two meetings earlier in the season.

Section 3 Final (Tuesday February 9, 7 PM, Redwood Falls Ice Arena)

#1 Luverne (21-6-0) vs #3 Fairmont (14-13-1)

Result: In the earliest section final in the state, Luverne was the first team to punch their ticket to the tournament as they got past Fairmont 5-2 last night.

Section 4 Final (Thursday February 11, 7:30 PM, St. Thomas Arena)

#1 St. Paul United (20-5-1) vs #3 South St. Paul (11-14-2)

Outlook: United was able to breeze into the finals with a 9-1 victory over Henry Sibley last night. They will be taking on a South St. Paul team that is coming off an upset of #2 Mahtomedi last night (3-1). The two teams met previously this season, as United won 7-1 on November 14.

Section 5 Final (Thursday February 11, 7:30 PM, Parade Ice Gardens)

#1 Blake (22-2-2) vs #2 Breck (23-4-0)

Outlook: If you watch one section final this week, this is the one. Last week, Lets Play Hockey had Blake and Breck as the top two teams in the state respectively, and they will take on each other for a trip to the state tournament. There were two previous meetings between the teams this season, and of course, they each won a game respectively (Breck 4-0, Blake 1-0).

Section 6 Final (Thursday February 11, 7 PM, MAC St Cloud)

#1 Alexandria (17-7-1) vs #2 Fergus Falls (11-14-1)

Outlook: After a slow finish to the season (started 5-1), Fergus Falls still finds themselves with a chance to go to the state tournament. However they are taking on an Alexandria team that they lost to twice already this season, and Alexandria is coming off a 4-1 win over Northern Lakes last night.

Section 7 Final (Thursday February 11, 7 PM, Duluth Heritage Sports Arena)

#1 Proctor-Hermantown (18-7-1) vs #3 Hibbing-Chisholm (13-14-0)

Outlook: Proctor-Hermantown enters the game as the overwhelming favorite (winners of their past six games), but they could get a good fight from Hibbing/Chisholm, who upset #2 Duluth Marshall 4-1 in the semifinals. The two teams met twice this season, with Proctor-Hermantown winning both games (3-0, 2-0).

Section 8 Final (Thursday February 11, 7 PM, REA Thief River Falls)

#1 Warroad (22-3-1) vs #2 Thief River Falls (20-5-1)

Outlook: Another section final featuring two top ranked teams in the state. Both teams come in as the third and fourth ranked teams in Class A, respectively. As expected, both teams split the season series with each other, so expect a close game on Thursday night.

Class AA

Section 1 Final (Thursday February 11, 5 PM, Owatonna Four Seasons Center)

#1 Lakeville South (19-5-2) vs #2 Dodge County (16-8-3)

Outlook: In their last 12 games, Lakeville South has gone 10-1-1 including a five game winning streak. Before losing their last two games of the regular season, Dodge County had an impressive 7-0-2 stretch, which helped them lock up the number two seed in the section. There were no previous meetings between the two teams this season.

Section 2 Final (Friday February 12, 6 PM, Ridder Arena)

#1 Minnetonka (21-3-2) vs #2 Eden Prarie (18-7-2)

Outlook: The Skippers breezed past Holy Family last night (7-1) in their first game of the playoffs, and will now take on Eden Prarie, a team they have defeated three times already this season. All three games were close, so expect nothing less in Friday's section final.

Section 3 Final (Wednesday February 10, 7 PM, Veterans Memorial Community Center)

#1 Eastview (17-6-4) vs #2 Eagan (18-5-4)

Outlook: It took nearly two full overtimes for Eastview to get past East Ridge in the semifinals on Saturday. Eagan, meanwhile, has gone relatively unscathed in their two section games, winning 5-2 and 2-0 respectively. Eastview won both games against Eagan 4-3 and 4-2 respectively.

Section 4 Final (Thursday February 11, 7:30 PM, Roseville Arena)

#1 Hill-Murray (26-0-1) vs #3 Mounds View (15-8-4)

Outlook: The Pioneers come in as the undisputed best team in Class AA, as they have yet to lose a game this season (only tie was against Blake on January 1). They will be the overwhelming favorites tomorrow night against Mounds View, who upset #2 seeded White Bear last night 2-0. The Pioneers are averaging less than a goal allowed per game, so Mounds View will need to be sharp defensively if they want to have a chance in this one.

Section 5 Final (Friday February 12, 7 PM, Roseville Arena)

#1 Maple Grove (19-5-2) vs #2 Centennial (19-6-2)

Outlook: Maple Grove defeated Spring Lake Park 5-0 last night, in their first game of the playoffs, to set up their section final against Centennial. Centennial narrowly defeated Blaine 3-2 last night to advance to Friday's final. Both teams met once this season, with Maple Grove coming out victorious 3-2 back on November 17. Centennial is 9-1-1 in their past 11 games, so don't sleep on them against top seeded Maple Grove.

Section 6 Final (Friday February 12, 8 PM, Ridder Arena)

#1 Edina (18-7-1) vs #3 Wayzata (16-9-1)

Outlook (updated): Wayzata jumped out to a 3-0 lead over #2 Cretin-Derham Hall and cruised to a 4-2 win to take them to a final. Edina needed very little work to get past Benilde-St. Margarets, winning 6-0. Both teams split the season series, with Edina winning the last game by a 7-1 margin.

Section 7 Final (Thursday February 11, 7 PM, Fogarty Arena)

#1 Elk River-Zimmerman (19-4-4) vs #2 Forest Lake (17-7-3)

Outlook: The Elks come into the game as the eighth ranked team in the state. They were able to squeak by Andover 4-3 on Saturday to get them into the finals. They have yet to play Forest Lake, who finished the season 2-2-1 before winning their first two games of the playoffs. Both teams averaged less than two goals allowed during the season, so expect a tight defensive contest in this one.

Section 8 Final (Friday February 12, 7 PM, Neutral Site)

#1 Roseau (19-8-0) vs #2 Sartell-Sauk Rapids (20-7-0)

Outlook: Roseau enters Friday's final on am impressive stretch, winning nine of their past ten games. One of those wins during the stretch came over their opponent on Friday, Sartell-Sauk Rapids, back on January 22 (6-3). But Sartell-Sauk Rapids also enters the game on an impressive stretch, winning 11 of their past 13 games. Should be a great battle between both teams on Friday night.

Stay tuned to Wild Xtra for continuing coverage of the High School Hockey Playoffs!

Follow Giles on Twitter @gilesferrell
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That guy who was famous in Winnipeg that one time.



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Posted 10 February 2016 - 10:32 AM

Go Prowlers!

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#3 Seth Stohs

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 09:30 PM

Warroad 3, Thief River Falls 1.

#4 Ben Remington

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 10:03 PM

Congrats to my cousin Kaylee Remington and Forest Lake for making it to State, 3-2 in OT

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