Friday, December 19, 2008

MN HS Roundup

Tim Kolehmainen, editor at The Breakdown wrote a nice feature on the top lines in Minnesota high school hockey. It's a pretty solid list. I'd maybe move the top lines at Duluth East and Minnetonka a little higher into the top ten.

Ben Hanowski is making a run at the state scoring record. As a general rule, I think any stats for high school hockey are essentially meaningless, and especially so for an out-state player that plays a lot of weaker teams, but Hanowski is still a very good player that has had a great high school career. It's looking pretty likely he'll make his fifth state tournament appearance with Little Falls this year, which is a really nice accomplishment.

Fox Sports North has done a pretty good job getting good high school games on TV this past week. I only caught the third period and overtime of Duluth East/Centennial but that was a very hard fought 2-2 tie. Both games that were on TV last night ended up being closer than expected. The Elk River/Eden Prairie and Edina/Grand Rapids games not only featured some of the bigger name players in the state, but also featured some of the better up-and-coming sophomores in the state.

Here are Follow the Puck's Top Ten rankings for each class.

Class AA: 1. Hill-Murray 2. Edina 3. Bloomington Jefferson 4. Holy Angels 5. Duluth East 6. Blaine 7. Centennial 8. Moorhead 9. Roseau 10. Eden Prairie

Class A: 1. Little Falls 2. Warroad 3. Hermantown 4. St. Thomas 5. Rochester Lourdes 6. Breck 7. Duluth Marshall 8. Mahtomedi 9. Thief River Falls 10. St. Cloud Cathedral

One of the problems with the way the state playoffs are set up is that it is designed to name one champion, and not necessarily get the best 8 teams to the XCel Center for the state's showcase event. Case in point, a week ago, Bloomington Jefferson, who could conceivably be seeded third in their section, took on Lakeville South, who so far, is looking like the favorite in Section 1AA and took the game into running time. Some of the best games this year could come in the section finals, as opposed to the state tournament.


Anonymous said...

This is more like trivia than a legitmate argument, but the top three scorers on the all-time list did win Mr. Hockey. The fourth would have as well IF there had been an award back in those days... just sayin'.

Anonymous said...

I like your knock on out-state teams regarding the scoring success of their players considering the success kids from Roseau, Warroad, Moorhead, and the Duluth area have had against the Metro schools.

Chris said...

The teams from Roseau, Warroad, Moorhead, and Duluth are oftentimes as good or better than metro schools, but they end up playing a lot of weaker out-state schools that don't have the depth to compete against a top school, thus leaving ample opportunities for good teams to run up the score.

USAFA Bulldog said...

Good write-up Chris. I'm working on a post about my thoughts on this as well.

Your point about the Little Falls schedule is very valid and something I've thought/wrote about before.

I'm not sure what to think about the sectional playoffs part. I agree at least partly about it, but then disagree with it a little as well.