2018-19 Season

Discussion of Minnesota Girls High School Hockey

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highgloveside
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by highgloveside » Fri Nov 30, 2018 9:28 pm

Any surprise teams thus far into the season? good or bad. Be nice to gauge how the season will go after the first wave of games.

jg2112
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by jg2112 » Sun Dec 02, 2018 2:34 am

I do think it's a bit difficult to claim surprises so early. With that in mind, I think Forest Lake and GRG are looking very good so far.

MNHockeyFan
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by MNHockeyFan » Sun Dec 02, 2018 5:57 am

jg2112 wrote:
Sun Dec 02, 2018 2:34 am
I do think it's a bit difficult to claim surprises so early. With that in mind, I think Forest Lake and GRG are looking very good so far.
In Class 2A it's been far too long since a northern team has been a bonafide statewide contender. Good to see GRG surprise at this point in the season.

jg2112
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by jg2112 » Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:34 pm

On the outstate issue, I think GRG, Brainerd and Roseau will have very successful 2A seasons. GRG's issue will be dealing with Andover or FL in sections.

I'll bring up my pet issue again. This would be a really good year to remove the sections and have an open postseason tourney. I don't think anyone would argue with a hypothetical State tournament with: Andover, Blake, Brainerd, Eden Prairie, Edina, Forest Lake, Maple Grove, and Wayzata (with GRG, Roseau, Eagan, Tonka and Elk River right there). Those are probably the top 8 teams so far. Instead only 5 of those teams, at most, will make State. In the meantime, here's the current state of Section 4AA:

Hill-Murray is 3-3 and lost 7-1 to Edina yesterday;
Stillwater is 3-3 and lost 6-1 to Hill-Murray;
Roseville is 3-3;
North St. Paul / Tartan is 3-5-1;
White Bear Lake is 2-5 and loses three D1 players after this year;
Mounds View is 1-6;
Woodbury is 1-4-1;
Irondale is 1-7.

zooomx
Posts: 273
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by zooomx » Sun Dec 02, 2018 6:33 pm

jg2112 wrote:
Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:34 pm
On the outstate issue, I think GRG, Brainerd and Roseau will have very successful 2A seasons. GRG's issue will be dealing with Andover or FL in sections.

I'll bring up my pet issue again. This would be a really good year to remove the sections and have an open postseason tourney. I don't think anyone would argue with a hypothetical State tournament with: Andover, Blake, Brainerd, Eden Prairie, Edina, Forest Lake, Maple Grove, and Wayzata (with GRG, Roseau, Eagan, Tonka and Elk River right there). Those are probably the top 8 teams so far. Instead only 5 of those teams, at most, will make State. In the meantime, here's the current state of Section 4AA:

Hill-Murray is 3-3 and lost 7-1 to Edina yesterday;
Stillwater is 3-3 and lost 6-1 to Hill-Murray;
Roseville is 3-3;
North St. Paul / Tartan is 3-5-1;
White Bear Lake is 2-5 and loses three D1 players after this year;
Mounds View is 1-6;
Woodbury is 1-4-1;
Irondale is 1-7.
7 of 8 state participants were Metro last year. I think the sections are already skewed enough for the Metro. :roll: My argument has always been, if you can't get out of sections... well you fill in the rest.

massalsa
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by massalsa » Tue Dec 04, 2018 8:59 pm

highgloveside wrote:
Fri Nov 30, 2018 9:28 pm
Any surprise teams thus far into the season? good or bad. Be nice to gauge how the season will go after the first wave of games.

10 bullet points of note (some related and some not):

1. Andover, Edina, Blake, and Warroad appear to be the best 4 teams at this point in the season.

2. Andover has a dynamic scoring line that has overwhelmed teams again this year. Graduated Butorac and inserted Krause. They may have some resistance this week vs MG and Tonka but then most likely will steamroll everyone until the final of the Schwans Cup vs Blake.

3. Edina did not have their best game vs Andover and then had a lights out 5 minutes versus Blake and held on for the win. Tonights game vs Breck could be interesting (as in years past) but I expect Edina to outshoot Breck 2-1 and win by a couple of goals. They are the most balanced and deep team in the state (shocker!) but they could lose to Breck, Wayzata or EP (they always play them tough) before the Blake rematch mid January.

4. Blake has the best 1st line in the state when Burton, Delianedis, and Daniel are together. Madeline Wethington is the most dynamic/impactful player in the state and she proved it by scoring all 3 goals against Edina. Goaltending is the biggest question for Blake. Secondarily an incredible performance from a goalie is the other way Blake could lose to a lessor team. They will average 40+ shots a game until they most likely face Andover after Christmas.

5. Wayzata is the at least the 4th best team in the state today and arguably had as good a game against Blake as Edina did. The Trojan is legit and will most likely have less than 5 losses this season. They COULD win the Lake Conference with 2 great games vs Edina. They are fast and can both score and defend very well. As JG has stated in the past it is too bad they are in same section with Edina and Blake.

6. Warroad appears to have dominated Breck last Friday night. Shots were 43-23. It is possible that Warroad had a great game and Breck did not and would love an opinion of anyone that saw the game. Warroad has a legitimate shot to be undefeated this season until the state championship vs Breck. Brainerd and Roseau (2x) are the biggest potential roadblocks to perfection. BTW...WARROAD HAS ONLY GIVEN UP 3 GOALS THIS SEASON!!! YES...3 GOALS ON 132 SHOTS!

7. Minnetonka has been disappointing so far outside of their game vs Warroad. MINNETONKA IS THE ONLY TEAM TO SCORE AGAINST WARROAD THIS SEASON! Looking at HP/USA Hockey stuff they may have as much high end talent as almost anyone other than Blake and Edina (and in the next year or two Andover) but they have been unable to capitalize on that talent to be .500 after 8 games.

8. I have not dug as deep into the box scores but Hill Murray and White Bear Lake are both down like JG showed earlier in thread. Can't tell what it is with WBL but they have not been the same team in my very "not in the loop" opinion since the parents/players/other revolted against the unpaid assistant coach last season (I think?). The guy that wrote some great LPH articles over the last bunch of years. Hill lost a great goalie and maybe a skater to Gentry but they still are the top destination on the East side of town correct?

9. Forest Lake making it happen without their returning junior goalie. Tonka is the best team they have faced so far in 5 games.

10. Which Ms. Goalie candidate faces more shots on average per game at the end of the season? Pahl is averaging 44/game and Harnett is averaging 48.5/game.

MNHockeyFan
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by MNHockeyFan » Wed Dec 05, 2018 6:59 pm

All great observations, massalsa. Following up adding a few comments from yesterday's action...

> Mayo goalie and Gopher recruit Makayla Pahl stopped 56 of 58 shots, staking Mayo to a 3-2 upset over John Marshall. Impressive!

> If 3 is "a couple" you were correct in your prediction in Edina's 7-4 win against Breck. With save percentages of .867 and .811 respectively, goaltending appears to have been an issue for both teams in this one.

> Will Breck's defeat allow Warroad to take over as No. 1 in Class A?

> White Bear Lake came back from an 0-2 deficit to Rochester Lourdes to score a goal in the 2nd, the 3rd and the overtime to pull out a 3-2 win. Amazingly Lourdes outshot White Bear 16-1 in the first period which apparently awakened the Bears from hibernation.

> No. 1 Andover escaped losing their top ranking with a narrow 2-1 win over Maple Grove. UMD recruit Gabby Krause with the winning goal. Andover faces another challenge when the square off against No. 12 Tonka.

bodyup88
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by bodyup88 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 8:31 pm

Clearly Warroad will be #1 in Class A. They are currently still undefeated and beat Breck in Breck's building 3-0 last Friday. Warroad will probably retain that ranking into the state tournament in February.

massalsa
Posts: 395
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by massalsa » Thu Dec 06, 2018 12:02 am

Warroad is the favorite in the rest of the games they play until the state championship assuming that Breck is the #2 seed. Brainerd and Roseau (x2) are the only 2 teams that have a decent chance to beat Warroad prior to the title game. They have some really nice players and quite frankly not much competition the rest of the season. Brainerd has a really nice goalie and some really nice players that "could" score some goals against them and the same could be said for Roseau.

Breck would have to get some quality wins against Wayzata, Edina (Xmas tourney), Andover and/or Blake to be considered #1 over them. I do believe that Breck will be much improved at the end of the season due to their rigorous schedule. They potentially have the hardest schedule in the state from December 27 to January 10 when they could play Edina and then Blake/Andover/Wayzata. Then play Blake/MG/EP over the last 2 weeks of season. They will certainly be more battle tested when they play Warroad again in the state champ. I like their chances to repeat...

bodyup88
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by bodyup88 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:56 pm

All very good points. Of course, Warroad may add a couple of players between now and the state tourney. :D

bodyup88
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by bodyup88 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:56 pm

All very good points. Of course, Warroad may add a couple of players between now and the state tourney. :D

MNHockeyFan
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by MNHockeyFan » Fri Dec 07, 2018 5:04 am

Tonka 2, Andover 1
Wow, looks like Edina will take over as No. 1 in the next ranking.

massalsa
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by massalsa » Fri Dec 07, 2018 6:00 am

Was getting ready to post that final. Good to see the Skippers put a game together against Andover. A D1 committed sophomore goalie, clearly a really strong D core on paper, and I would argue a better than average F group surrounding an elite Martin. They will make the Lake more interesting if they get their swagger back and start playing with a lot of confidence.

Maybe they just could not get over the hump against some early solid opponents...good goaltending makes a huge difference in these close games with any team.

See BSM v Edina last night. The 10th grade BSM goalie Greene made 37 saves on 41 shots against Edina...she made 48 saves on 51 shots last year to lose to Blake in OT.

There appears to be a nice group of goalies that are playing well from 8th - 10th grade in MN HS hockey right now. They will be a big factor down the stretch as these younger teams get more confidence and experience offensively.

MNHockeyFan
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by MNHockeyFan » Sun Dec 09, 2018 5:34 am

Game notes:
> Maple Grove came back from a three goal deficit to score three in the second, one in the third and the winner in overtime to beat Blaine 5-4 OT.

> Wayzata came back from being two goals down, scoring two in the second and four straight in the third to win 6-4.

> Edina gave up a first period goal to Grand Rapids but responded with two in the second and two in the third to win going away 4-1. The victory all but assures they will take over as the new No. 1 ranked team in Class 2A.

jg2112
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by jg2112 » Sun Dec 09, 2018 7:31 pm

I find this worth watching all season. According to KRACH, here is the predicted AA state tournament field as of today based on highest KRACH ranking per section, with the teams' KRACH rankings in parentheses:

1AA - Northfield (27)
2AA - Tonka (11)
3AA - Eagan (9)
4AA - Hill-Murray (20)
5AA - Maple Grove (8)
6AA - Edina (1)
7AA - Andover (3)
8AA - Roseau (7)

If a true postseason tournament was held and teams won according to rankings, the State tournament field would be:

Edina, Blake, Andover, Forest Lake, Wayzata, Grand Rapids/Greenway, Roseau and Maple Grove.

bodyup88
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Re: 2018-19 Season

Post by bodyup88 » Mon Dec 10, 2018 10:47 pm

JG2112's arguments are becoming more and more apparent. The notion of sections for AA hockey is an outdated structure - the geographic concept doesn't hold water anymore. As JG2112 has stated before there are currently 65 teams in AA girls'hockey in MN. He opts to move one team to Class A and do a 64 team bracket. I think keeping all 65 at AA is a perfect number and here is the reasoning and format of a proposed state tournament.

* Currently, the top 6 teams and 7 of the top 10 in the KRACH ratings come from two sections (6 and 7). That means 5 of the top 10 teams will not be in the state tourney under the current section format. Further, at least 3 of those 7 teams won't even have the opportunity to play in the section final.

* There are currently 8 sections. 5 sections have 8 teams, 2 sections have 9 teams and 1 section has only 7 teams (65 total teams). It doesn't make sense to me that there is 1 section with only 7 teams and 2 sections with 9. Additionally, of the sections with 9 teams last year the scores of the 2 first round 8 vs 9 "play-in" games were both 2-1. However, both of those winners were then beaten 14-0 and 14-1 in sections 1 and 6 by the #1 seeds.

* The scores of the other first round games involving the other #1 seeds were 4-0, 5-0, 13-0, 7-2 and 6-1. That's a total combined score of 63-4 in the 7 games involving the # 1 seed in the section quarterfinals. (Section 5 only has 7 teams so its #1 seed had a bye)

* As O-townClown wrote in November he had no interest in watching some of those name those scores in the first round. I think most hockey fans would agree with that sentiment.

* So, here's the proposal: Carve out the 8 northern schools to have their own section of the bracket (Bemidji, Brainerd, Duluth, GR-G, Moorhead, Roseau, St. Cloud and Sartell/SR) Seed these teams 1-8 and perhaps play first round games at home and semis and finals at Sanford Center in Bemidji.

* Seed the remaining 57 teams using KRACH. To avoid those 1 vs. 8 blowout games give the 7 # 1 seeds a bye. That would leave 7 non-northern sections of 49 teams (7 teams per section). 8 teams would not qualify for the state tournament and could each get a competitive game vs one of the other 8 non-qualifiers to end their season. Interestingly, as of today all 3 Rochester teams are in that category. Use some creativity here so teams don't have to play each other 3 times in a season.

* Simply use the KRACH ratings (or some approved alternative) to serpentine the remaining seeds to make equal strength brackets. e.g, in the first round, #8 plays #49, #9 plays #48, #10 plays #47, # 11 plays #46 ...and #28 plays #29. 21 first round games in those 7 sections. Once the 8 state tourney teams are established there could be re-seeding but it would not be required because that has, theoretically, already been done.

* Arguments will be made whether or not there should be a northern section and, therefore, 1 guaranteed northern team but no opportunity for 2. Right now there are northern teams spread in 2 sections. Currently, 2 northern teams could conceivably make the state tournament or none. Andover and Forest Lake have been the powers in section 7 recently with Elk River a perennial contender. A northern team has generally come out of section 8; however, both North Wright County and Buffalo are in that section and could emerge at some point. Both of those programs will be moving to the Lake Conference next year where they will face Edina, Eden Prairie, Hopkins/Park, Mtka and Wayzata twice a year. They are both co-op programs with combined enrollments of 2,865 and 2,634 respectively.

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