AA Rankings for 1/22/17

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AA Rankings for 1/22/17

Post by karl(east) » Sun Jan 22, 2017 9:21 am

As we head down the stretch, we’ve got movement in the top few spots, even as things stay pretty steady further down the table, and the top 15 overall start to separate themselves from the rest. Your rankings:

1. Eden Prairie (11-4-2)
-This is one of those cases where I’m trusting my eyes instead of a mechanical assessment of wins and losses. The Eagles look strong, collecting wins over the top two teams in last week’s rankings in solid fashion. They’ve turned depth to their advantage, and now have the three strongest forward lines in the state. Their one lingering weakness: an occasional lack of discipline. Just one game this week, though as it’s a rematch of last season’s final, I expect it’ll bring out some emotion.
This week: Sat vs. Wayzata

2. Hill-Murray (12-1-3)
-Somehow, this team just keeps finding ways to win. The win over Edina shows that they can pull it off, even when heavily reliant on goaltending and defense. I’m still not convinced they can keep it up, but results are results. The challenges only continue this coming week, and give them a chance to further solidify themselves.
This week: Tues vs. #4 Elk River, Thurs vs. #11 Maple Grove, Sat vs. Simley

3. Stillwater (14-2)
-Got outlasted by Eden Prairie, which drops the Ponies from the top spot for the first time in a month. It’s hard to judge too much on a fairly close loss to a good team on outdoor ice, but it’s fair to say they don’t enjoy a whole lot of separation from the other top teams, including the two in their section. They should get back to their winning ways this week.
This week: Tues at Mahtomedi, Sat at Park (Cottage Grove)

4. Elk River (14-3)
-The Elks clawed out a 1-0 win over Maple Grove, which does enough to keep them steady. Jax Murray’s health seems to be the deciding factor between a dynamic offense and a plodding one; he was back against Andover on Saturday. This week’s Hill game is chance to improve their top five positioning.
This week: Tues at #2 Hill-Murray, Thurs vs. Anoka

5. Centennial (12-3)
-The Cougars are on a roll after a second straight lopsided win over a good team, and have outscored opponents 34-3 since their last loss. This is moment of truth week for them: a win over Edina will solidify their top 5 standing, and a win over the only 5AA team to beat them, Maple Grove, would lock up a vital top seed in the section.
This week: Tues at #6 Edina, Sat at #11 Maple Grove

6. Edina (11-5-1)
-Not much shame in the Hornets’ two losses this past week, but they are losses nonetheless, and while there’s a lot to like here, they still feel a little young and unpolished, and the finishing isn’t quite there. The Centennial game this week gives them an instant chance to jump back into the top five.
This week: Tues vs. #5 Centennial, Thurs vs. #15 Minnetonka, Sat vs. Hopkins

7. Holy Family (12-3-2)
-Beat a decent STMA team and fried Benilde to keep the beat going. Up next: one of the better Wright County teams, plus an all-important collision with Minnetonka. If they lose this one, it may be difficult to get more than the 3-seed in 2AA given their lack of a game with Eden Prairie.
This week: Tues at Orono, Sat at #15 Minnetonka

8. Lakeville North (13-2-2)
-Not the prettiest of weeks for the Panthers, as they had a close game with Benilde and needed a frantic comeback to outlast Prior Lake, but they did rebound with a convincing win over an Eastview team that tripped them up in December. They get a second crack at a Burnsville team that tied them the first time around this week.
This week: Thurs at Farmington, Sat at Burnsville

9. St. Thomas Academy (12-4-1)
-Took care of Farmington in their lone game. Not likely to face any challenges this week, either.
This week: Thurs vs. Hastings, Sat vs. Henry Sibley

10. Grand Rapids (12-4-1)
-Unleashed their firepower against two weaker northern opponents to get back on track. They should beat Duluth Marshall this week, but the game will be at least a decent gauge on where the middle of the section now stands, and while that game on Friday probably won’t be close, it’s a welcome sight on the schedule, and should bring out some good emotion.
This week: Tues vs. Duluth Marshall, Fri vs. Greenway

11. Maple Grove (11-4)
-A narrow loss to Elk River isn’t going to hurt the Crimson, and a key win over Blaine assures at least a top two seed in 5AA. To have any hope at the top spot, though, they need to deliver against Centennial this week, and with Hill-Murray also on the schedule, this has the makings of a huge week for the Leaves.
This week: Thurs at #2 Hill-Murray, Sat vs. #5 Centennial

12. White Bear Lake (10-4-2)
-Couldn’t keep pace with Hermantown, but bounced back solidly against Roseville. This remains one of the hardest teams to rank, with a couple of bad losses and uninspired wins paired with one great win and a couple of quality ties. For now, I’ll hold them steady. Avenging their loss to Cretin this week would be an important step in showing they belong among the elite, and don’t just happen to play a few top teams well.
This week: Tues vs. Cretin-Derham Hall, Thurs vs. Mounds View

13. Duluth East (10-5-1)
-The Hounds’ offense had a productive road trip through 8AA, as they coasted past Brainerd and Roseau. Up next are various lakes, one underachieving, the other bottom-feeding.
This week: Tues at Prior Lake, Thurs vs. Forest Lake

14. Moorhead (12-3-1)
-The Spuds surged past Brainerd and Warroad, and haven’t lost in their past six. They have a major 8AA week ahead of them: avenge the loss to Roseau and beat STMA, and they’re in position for the top seed; lose both, and they won’t be better than #3. Time to see if they can turn their promise into consistent performance.
This week: Tues vs. Roseau, Sat vs. St. Michael-Albertville

15. Minnetonka (11-6)
-The Skippers took care of some of their easier Lake games this past week; now, it gets to be crunch time, as they have a chance to prove something against Edina and play a key 2AA seeding game. This team certainly has the potential to make a big move up with its remaining schedule.
This week: Thurs at #6 Edina, Sat vs. #7 Holy Family

The Next Ten

Burnsville (10-6-1)
-The Blaze survived a mild scare against Shakopee, then turned around and beat Lakeville South to continue their gradual upward progress. They play their toughest remaining game against Lakeville North this week, whom they tied the first time around. Win it, and they’ll be in command of the South Suburban.

St. Michael-Albertville (12-3-1)
-The Knights got a bit of a reality check this past week, as they lost their first two games with top opponents, Holy Family and Hermantown. Neither was especially close, which basically just confirms my view that they belong in the 15-20 range. A huge game in Moorhead awaits them on Saturday.

Blaine (8-7-1)
-The Bengals have now lost five in a row, though they’ve all come against top competition, and these big games are close more often than not. They should get back in the win column against Andover and Anoka this week.

Lakeville South (10-5-1)
-Time to be real: while this team has a solid defense, they haven’t won a game against a higher-end team since early December, and that was over Burnsville, who just beat them. Breck in their opener is their only other real quality win. They could prove something just by taking care of the likes of Prior Lake and Eastview this week.

Prior Lake (9-7)
-Gave Lakeville North a good fight but coughed it up in the end, which seems to sum up how this season has gone for the Lakers. They have a couple of chances to improve their standing this week when they host Duluth East and Lakeville South.

Roseau (12-5)
-The win over East Grand Forks was a nice result, but an ugly loss to Duluth East was not, and leaves some questions going forward against deep quality teams. Fortunately for them, there aren’t a lot of those in 8AA. There is one in Moorhead, though, and they’ll need to beat the Spuds a second time to keep their shot at a top two seed.

Cretin-Derham Hall (10-5)
-Taking care of business with solid wins over Suburban East teams. Wayzata’s loss to Benilde re-opens a road to the 2-seed in 6AA as well, given their much stronger record than the struggling Trojans and Red Knights. A big rematch with White Bear looms.

Bemidji (9-6-1)
-Tied East Grand Forks this past week, which neither helps nor hurts them. They have a rubber match with Brainerd this week that could decide a playoff home game, and also visit a strong Class A team in Alexandria.

Duluth Marshall (10-6-1)
-Have won four in a row to build up the record, though none of it came against challenging competition. This week’s Grand Rapids game will give a better sense of where they are compared to the 7AA top tier.

Wayzata (5-11)
-The Trojans are plunging toward rock-bottom, but hang on to a mention because we know the talent to be better is here, and because nearly all of their losses have been close, and to good teams, Benilde this past week excepted. They have no shortage of chances to show us something—anything—beginning with Eden Prairie this week.

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Post by redtundra » Sun Jan 22, 2017 10:40 am

Karl for the sake of accuracy, I believe HF has 1 tie and not 2. Again, as has been echoed by all, this is the best Sunday read around. Sorry NY Times. Well reasoned and fair rankings. I really appreciate how you don't just go by record but actually parse through the games to find the realties. As most said at the start of the year, this is as wide open a year as anyone can remember. When your #10 team on Jan. 22 has as good a chance as anyone to win State, it's wide open...

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Re: AA Rankings for 1/22/17

Post by HShockeywatcher » Sun Jan 22, 2017 10:57 am

Everything looks good, as usual.
karl(east) wrote:Duluth Marshall (10-6-1)
-Have won four in a row to build up the record, though none of it came against challenging competition. This week’s Grand Rapids game will give a better sense of where they are compared to the 7AA top tier.
The Hilltoppers have me intrigued. They have 6 losses, but haven't been shut out and 2 are by one goal, 3 are by two goals and 1 is by three goals. And, has been pointed out, they are chugging along through the lesser competition. I doubt they'll be a threat to anyone this year, but these all look like good things and they only have 3 seniors on the team.

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Post by Clarkkent » Sun Jan 22, 2017 11:17 am

You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.

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Post by HShockeywatcher » Sun Jan 22, 2017 11:36 am

Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
6 out of 17 isn't close to half, although I agree with your comments on EP. They have played 10 games against teams in karl's top 15 and are 4-4-2 in those games. Lost to Rapids, Elk River, Edina, Centennial, tied St Thomas and Hill Murray and beat East, Edina x2, and Stillwater, their last 3 being over those top teams.

Hill Murray is 2-1-2 against their ranked opponents, beating Edina and St Thomas 2-1, losing to #15 Tonka and tying EP, WBL (and Tartan).

However, if you do that same analysis with Stillwater, they are 1-2 against top 15 teams. They beat Elk River 4-1 and in their last 3 games lost on the road to WBL by 1 and lost a close one to EP.

So, I think we have a year where there are 10 teams who can all beat up on each other and the difference between many schedules is the number of top teams they've playing. I'm not sure I could come to a better conclusion; I'd probably have Stillwater and Hill Murray switched.

Then look at St Thomas. Sure, they've beaten Tonka, Holy Family and Centennial and tied EP (so they should be #2, right???), but they also lost to North, Edina, Hill and now Mahtomedi. They are 4-3-1 against top 15 teams and also have a loss with Mahtomedi.

With wins over Edina, Maple Grove and Rapids, HF is 3-3-1 against top 15 teams, having also lost to St Thomas, Moorhead and Maple Grove with a tie with North. So, they are ranked ahead of every team they've lost to...

In summary, AA teams difficult to rank :-$

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Post by MNHockeyFan » Sun Jan 22, 2017 12:00 pm

HShockeywatcher wrote:In summary, AA teams difficult to rank :-$
Very hard. In addition to taking each team's whole body of work into account, Karl may be placing greater emphasis on more recent results plus what he's personally observed in the past couple of weeks. EP has won five in a row, having beaten #13 Duluth East, #6 Edina and #3 Stillwater the last three. They definitely have the hot hand right now.

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Post by green4 » Sun Jan 22, 2017 12:06 pm

Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
Not too often do you see an East fan convert to be an EP lover. Karl must be getting old and his memory must be fading, 2011 wasn't that long ago.

In reality I think EP is deserving of that spot after this week.

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Post by Slammer » Sun Jan 22, 2017 12:09 pm

I really don't understand how Rapids can be in front of Duluth East after a 5-0 loss to them. I understand body of work, but East is clearly the better team.

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Post by BlueLineSpecial » Sun Jan 22, 2017 12:12 pm

It's difficult to rank the top 10 right now, without at least a few people having a different opinion. You've got to factor in record, common opponents, SOS, trending direction, and intangibles. EP has a very strong SOS, they're definitely trending up (2 goal and 3 goal wins against at-the-time #2 and #1 teams in the state) and the have intangibles (best player in the state, among others). They feel like a number one team right now.

Hill, not so much. They keep winning and seem comfortable counterpunching when the opportunities present themselves. Good teams can outshoot Hill and control offensive zone time for longer stretches. But this years Hill team is as good as any in recent memory at capitalizing on their chances. They may have challenges against balanced and deep teams that stay disciplined on both ends of the ice. They almost lull teams D into pressing toward the offensive zone and can catch them on odd man rushes.

Stillwater, as someone mentioned in a different thread, is talented at the top end as any team but may be suffering from a soft schedule.
The City of Hill Murray is beautiful this time of year

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Post by hockey59 » Sun Jan 22, 2017 1:19 pm

HM is clearly better than I thought (based on my comment last week that they should be ranked 7th) A big test for them against ER (with Jax evidently back) and MG will give them a battle too. If HM wins these 2 games, Stillwater should be VERY concerned come section time. And btw, since they play in the same section, why doesn't SW & HM play during the regular season?

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Post by karl(east) » Sun Jan 22, 2017 1:46 pm

Thanks for the correction on the HF record.

As others have noted, lots of different ways we can go. HSHW summarized it well, and . If you measure a team against the top 10 and then again against the top 20, it can produce totally different results. You really just have to try as many different methods of looking at things, and then mash them all together, and give some weight to the eye test, which is what got EP where it is.

Not only is EP on a roll, but (after seeing them 4 times in the past week and a half) I think I have a decent handle on why they're doing so well, beyond the obvious "they have Casey Mittelstadt." Moving Rudrud to the top line hasn't been without its moments where he looks a little out of place, but it allows them to go 3 deep with their lines as well as anyone in the state. That third line in particular is generating a lot of pressure. They now have depth to go with the star power, and can grind out wins instead of just relying on Casey's heroics. That's a change from last season. They're still not perfect, but it's helping to separate them in an otherwise messy field.

Marshall certainly could be a factor in 7AA next year given their youth, though East (and Cloquet) are also very much on the young side, and Elk River has a deep enough program these days that they probably won't drop much even with the players they graduate. Rapids is something of a wild card, depending on the futures of Hain and McLaughlin--even if back, they'll be awfully thin.

East is another interesting case...they've got the Minnetonka laugher of a loss and the blowout win over Rapids, which more or less offset. Their other 4 losses are by one goal (one with an EN) to very good teams. They're also taking care of the second tier of teams, which is a blessed change of pace from some recent seasons. As an East fan, I'm feeling pretty good about this team's makeup and direction. But they just don't have any other real quality wins outside of Rapids. They're a fortunate bounce or two away from being firmly in the top 10...but, finishing the deal is an important piece of the puzzle.

Good question on why Stillwater and Hill don't play. They played last year; no idea why they'd cut that one, of all games. Makes seeding potentially messy, which is a big deal when there are 3 good teams. At least Stilly has a couple of quality opponents down the stretch (LN, HF, WBL 2nd time) that will make them a little easier to weigh relative to everyone else. That schedule is an issue, though.

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Post by redtundra » Sun Jan 22, 2017 2:24 pm

Was at HF game against Benilde Saturday. Granted Benilde is way down, but it looked like a high school team against a bantam team. Moe didn't really need to make a save all game that mattered. That D corps is lethal. Really wish HF played EP in regular season. Like Hill and Stillwater, it would certainly help seeding. I think Tonka is one of the big wild cards in Section 2 in that if they did what they did last year - win the Lake - they would most likely get the #1 seed... Don't see it happening again, but they are extremely balanced. Lakeville North seems to be in big separation mode in 1 after LVS stumbles. 3 section winners seem fairly clear at this point barring some real change: LVN, Edina and St. Thomas. Other 5 sections still really up for grabs - although Centennial is looking to separate.

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Post by kniven » Sun Jan 22, 2017 2:44 pm

karl(east) wrote:Thanks for the correction on the HF record.

As others have noted, lots of different ways we can go. HSHW summarized it well, and . If you measure a team against the top 10 and then again against the top 20, it can produce totally different results. You really just have to try as many different methods of looking at things, and then mash them all together, and give some weight to the eye test, which is what got EP where it is.

Not only is EP on a roll, but (after seeing them 4 times in the past week and a half) I think I have a decent handle on why they're doing so well, beyond the obvious "they have Casey Mittelstadt." Moving Rudrud to the top line hasn't been without its moments where he looks a little out of place, but it allows them to go 3 deep with their lines as well as anyone in the state. That third line in particular is generating a lot of pressure. They now have depth to go with the star power, and can grind out wins instead of just relying on Casey's heroics. That's a change from last season. They're still not perfect, but it's helping to separate them in an otherwise messy field.

Marshall certainly could be a factor in 7AA next year given their youth, though East (and Cloquet) are also very much on the young side, and Elk River has a deep enough program these days that they probably won't drop much even with the players they graduate. Rapids is something of a wild card, depending on the futures of Hain and McLaughlin--even if back, they'll be awfully thin.

East is another interesting case...they've got the Minnetonka laugher of a loss and the blowout win over Rapids, which more or less offset. Their other 4 losses are by one goal (one with an EN) to very good teams. They're also taking care of the second tier of teams, which is a blessed change of pace from some recent seasons. As an East fan, I'm feeling pretty good about this team's makeup and direction. But they just don't have any other real quality wins outside of Rapids. They're a fortunate bounce or two away from being firmly in the top 10...but, finishing the deal is an important piece of the puzzle.

Good question on why Stillwater and Hill don't play. They played last year; no idea why they'd cut that one, of all games. Makes seeding potentially messy, which is a big deal when there are 3 good teams. At least Stilly has a couple of quality opponents down the stretch (LN, HF, WBL 2nd time) that will make them a little easier to weigh relative to everyone else. That schedule is an issue, though.
I've got a wondering eye on the Andover Huskies. PeeWee and Bantam AA's both in the top 5 rankings state wide. Manny is a great guy/coach down there as well. You think 7AA is tight this year? The next 3-5 will be even tighter.

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Post by Goldyismoldy » Sun Jan 22, 2017 3:07 pm

Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
I gotta concur with Superman here. I think last week you could of taken the top six and called them even, Karl's "eye test" aside. Stillwater for sure, and maybe Hill with weaker schedules so your not quite sure about them. EP beating two of the top six, probably doesn't warrant such a big move considering the losses and ties.

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Post by kpryan88 » Sun Jan 22, 2017 3:46 pm

Goldyismoldy wrote:
Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
I gotta concur with Superman here. I think last week you could of taken the top six and called them even, Karl's "eye test" aside. Stillwater for sure, and maybe Hill with weaker schedules so your not quite sure about them. EP beating two of the top six, probably doesn't warrant such a big move considering the losses and ties.
Why does Hill's schedule always get called weak? After the upcoming week is over, they will have 7 games vs the top 15 with games vs STA & Moorhead left on the schedule. Yes, I know they have a soft conference schedule, but they have 3 conference teams they only play 1 time to fit in more nonconference games in. One can't always predict who will be good year to year but their nonconference schedule is packed with games vs teams who were expected to be better (Burnsville, Wayzata, Blaine & Benilde) and a team on the rise (Marshall). Hill only has 11 conference games with 14 nonconference. And they don't schedule patsies like that team just east of the city of Hill-Murray. Just trying to say that over half their games are vs nonconference opponents who Lechner expects to be top tier competition. That, to me, doesn't equal a weak schedule.

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Post by Goldyismoldy » Sun Jan 22, 2017 3:58 pm

kpryan88 wrote:
Goldyismoldy wrote:
Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
I gotta concur with Superman here. I think last week you could of taken the top six and called them even, Karl's "eye test" aside. Stillwater for sure, and maybe Hill with weaker schedules so your not quite sure about them. EP beating two of the top six, probably doesn't warrant such a big move considering the losses and ties.
Why does Hill's schedule always get called weak? After the upcoming week is over, they will have 7 games vs the top 15 with games vs STA & Moorhead left on the schedule.
Because, compared to the rest, it is. We'll deal with "after this week" well after this week. Hills schedule this year is tougher than I remember it being past years, where after the holiday tourneys they only played Catholic NC teams until a year ender against Moorhead. I'm just going on memory here, I'm sure I will be corrected.

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Post by BlueLineSpecial » Sun Jan 22, 2017 3:59 pm

kpryan88 wrote:
Goldyismoldy wrote:
Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
I gotta concur with Superman here. I think last week you could of taken the top six and called them even, Karl's "eye test" aside. Stillwater for sure, and maybe Hill with weaker schedules so your not quite sure about them. EP beating two of the top six, probably doesn't warrant such a big move considering the losses and ties.
Why does Hill's schedule always get called weak? After the upcoming week is over, they will have 7 games vs the top 15 with games vs STA & Moorhead left on the schedule. Yes, I know they have a soft conference schedule, but they have 3 conference teams they only play 1 time to fit in more nonconference games in. One can't always predict who will be good year to year but their nonconference schedule is packed with games vs teams who were expected to be better (Burnsville, Wayzata, Blaine & Benilde) and a team on the rise (Marshall). Hill only has 11 conference games with 14 nonconference. And they don't schedule patsies like that team just east of the city of Hill-Murray. Just trying to say that over half their games are vs nonconference opponents who Lechner expects to be top tier competition. That, to me, doesn't equal a weak schedule.
Because of Hills conference their schedule will always be questioned. I've said it many times before, they put together as challenging a non-conference schedule as anyone in the state. I used to think it would be better for them to play in the Suburban East (or whatever it's called now). But top to bottom it's not demonstrably better than their current conference with Zephyrs and Cadets. Didn't Benilde go to an independent schedule a couple of years back? That's about the only way to get a harder schedule for Hill.
The City of Hill Murray is beautiful this time of year

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Post by kniven » Sun Jan 22, 2017 4:08 pm

kpryan88 wrote:
Goldyismoldy wrote:
Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
I gotta concur with Superman here. I think last week you could of taken the top six and called them even, Karl's "eye test" aside. Stillwater for sure, and maybe Hill with weaker schedules so your not quite sure about them. EP beating two of the top six, probably doesn't warrant such a big move considering the losses and ties.
Why does Hill's schedule always get called weak? After the upcoming week is over, they will have 7 games vs the top 15 with games vs STA & Moorhead left on the schedule. Yes, I know they have a soft conference schedule, but they have 3 conference teams they only play 1 time to fit in more nonconference games in. One can't always predict who will be good year to year but their nonconference schedule is packed with games vs teams who were expected to be better (Burnsville, Wayzata, Blaine & Benilde) and a team on the rise (Marshall). Hill only has 11 conference games with 14 nonconference. And they don't schedule patsies like that team just east of the city of Hill-Murray. Just trying to say that over half their games are vs nonconference opponents who Lechner expects to be top tier competition. That, to me, doesn't equal a weak schedule.
I can't stand private schools. Put them all in their own section and forget about them.

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Post by BlueLineSpecial » Sun Jan 22, 2017 4:08 pm

Goldyismoldy wrote:
kpryan88 wrote:
Goldyismoldy wrote:
Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
I gotta concur with Superman here. I think last week you could of taken the top six and called them even, Karl's "eye test" aside. Stillwater for sure, and maybe Hill with weaker schedules so your not quite sure about them. EP beating two of the top six, probably doesn't warrant such a big move considering the losses and ties.
Why does Hill's schedule always get called weak? After the upcoming week is over, they will have 7 games vs the top 15 with games vs STA & Moorhead left on the schedule.
Because, compared to the rest, it is. We'll deal with "after this week" well after this week. Hills schedule this year is tougher than I remember it being past years, where after the holiday tourneys they only played Catholic NC teams until a year ender against Moorhead. I'm just going on memory here, I'm sure I will be corrected.
They used to play some of the weaker teams in their conference twice (SSP, NSP, Simley and Henry Sibley). They've definitely cut down on conference games, which is a good thing. It's odd because their schedule always seems to look about the same: Burnsville and Moorhead always bookend their season. Benilde, Wayzata, and Edina usually in there in the first quarter of the season. Schwans Cup Gold. Conference play. A few more good west metro teams. Personally I'd like to see them make more trips up north to play DE, GR, Roseau, Cloquet, Bemidji, etc. And, they need to get Stillwater on the schedule. Super odd thy rarely ever play them in the regular season. Whew. That was rambling. Happy Sunday!
The City of Hill Murray is beautiful this time of year

Goldyismoldy
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Post by Goldyismoldy » Sun Jan 22, 2017 4:27 pm

BlueLineSpecial wrote:
Whew. That was rambling. Happy Sunday!
What kind of god**** site would this be without rambling?

Geezus, don't apologize when we put up with (insert)....

kniven
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Location: Duluth area

Post by kniven » Sun Jan 22, 2017 4:29 pm

kpryan88 wrote:
Goldyismoldy wrote:
Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
I gotta concur with Superman here. I think last week you could of taken the top six and called them even, Karl's "eye test" aside. Stillwater for sure, and maybe Hill with weaker schedules so your not quite sure about them. EP beating two of the top six, probably doesn't warrant such a big move considering the losses and ties.
Why does Hill's schedule always get called weak? After the upcoming week is over, they will have 7 games vs the top 15 with games vs STA & Moorhead left on the schedule. Yes, I know they have a soft conference schedule, but they have 3 conference teams they only play 1 time to fit in more nonconference games in. One can't always predict who will be good year to year but their nonconference schedule is packed with games vs teams who were expected to be better (Burnsville, Wayzata, Blaine & Benilde) and a team on the rise (Marshall). Hill only has 11 conference games with 14 nonconference. And they don't schedule patsies like that team just east of the city of Hill-Murray. Just trying to say that over half their games are vs nonconference opponents who Lechner expects to be top tier competition. That, to me, doesn't equal a weak schedule.
I can't stand private schools. Put them all in their own section and forget about them.

Sparlimb
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Post by Sparlimb » Sun Jan 22, 2017 4:35 pm

kniven wrote:
kpryan88 wrote:
Goldyismoldy wrote:
Clarkkent wrote:You have a lot of EP love for sure. Four loses and two ties does not make them #1. That's half their games without a win- A lot of respect for Hill too, talk about weak schedules- I believe STA and HF should move up.
I gotta concur with Superman here. I think last week you could of taken the top six and called them even, Karl's "eye test" aside. Stillwater for sure, and maybe Hill with weaker schedules so your not quite sure about them. EP beating two of the top six, probably doesn't warrant such a big move considering the losses and ties.
Why does Hill's schedule always get called weak? After the upcoming week is over, they will have 7 games vs the top 15 with games vs STA & Moorhead left on the schedule. Yes, I know they have a soft conference schedule, but they have 3 conference teams they only play 1 time to fit in more nonconference games in. One can't always predict who will be good year to year but their nonconference schedule is packed with games vs teams who were expected to be better (Burnsville, Wayzata, Blaine & Benilde) and a team on the rise (Marshall). Hill only has 11 conference games with 14 nonconference. And they don't schedule patsies like that team just east of the city of Hill-Murray. Just trying to say that over half their games are vs nonconference opponents who Lechner expects to be top tier competition. That, to me, doesn't equal a weak schedule.
I can't stand private schools. Put them all in their own section and forget about them.
We did better. We put one in pretty much every section so someday we can have an all private tournament. It would be fun to hear the screaming...

Goldyismoldy
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Post by Goldyismoldy » Sun Jan 22, 2017 4:58 pm

Sparlimb wrote:
We did better. We put one in pretty much every section so someday we can have an all private tournament. It would be fun to hear the screaming...
How many teams did you have last year again?

ryguyMN
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Post by ryguyMN » Sun Jan 22, 2017 4:58 pm

As far as the top 5 on Karl's list, that's how I would have ranked them too as the games concluded last night. I don't see how EP could be ranked any less than #1. They are the best team in the state right now.

Goldyismoldy
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Post by Goldyismoldy » Sun Jan 22, 2017 5:25 pm

ryguyMN wrote:As far as the top 5 on Karl's list, that's how I would have ranked them too as the games concluded last night. I don't see how EP could be ranked any less than #1. They are the best team in the state right now.
They have 4 losses and 2 ties. One of their wins for the week was over a suspect Stillwater team who only had one quality win. The other is over now #6 Edina. EP went from #6 to #1. That's a stretch when teams between the two had good weeks as well.

They all have at least 1 quality win. Who has the most of Karl's top 10-15? What about the flip side, less than stellar performances? (Ties and losses outside top 15).

I'm not saying EP isn't #1. But at this point, EVERY position is arguable depending on POV.

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