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Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:37 am
by ClassAGuy
Class A
1. Warroad
2. Hermantown
3. East Grand Forks
4. St Cloud Cathedral
5. Mahtomedi
6. Delano
7. Orono
8. Alexandria
9. Duluth Denfeld
10. Thief River Falls
11. Gentry Academy
12. Little Falls
13. St Paul Johnson
14. Monticello
15. Armstong/Cooper
16. Greenway
17. Hutchinson
18. Dodge County
19. Eveleth Gilbert
20. Breck

On The Rise Heading Into Sections:
Warroad- Should be the #1 seed and needs to be ranked number 1. They lost twice all year to double a rival who has no implications on Class A they have been strong all year.

EGF- Destoyed SCC yesterday and Roseau and TRF in the past two weeks very hot team. 8A should get two teams!

Alexandria- been playing great defensive hockey took SCC to the brink for two periods without its best player and since strong has returned provided the necessary scoring punch. Alexandria looking like a great upset pick in 6A.

Delano- Been on fire since January and plays a playoff brand of hockey won 18 games this year and looks scary good heading into playoffs.

Armstrong/Cooper- Impressive wins at Orono and at TG show this will be scary 3 or 4 seed in 2A.

Breck- Speaking of 2A another team that found its game down the stretch the Mustangs will be dangerous as well.

Dodge County- Won 13 in a row for 20 wins on the year. The Wildcats should win a weak 1A and arrive at the X a year early!

Mahtomedi- Since Hagstrom's return this team has put some impressive numbers up and beat solid AA Competition. They will keep their grip on 4A

Teams on the Decline Heading into Section
Cathedral- That was ugly yesterday they looked out of sync and injured they have given up 5 , 6 and 6 goals in 3 of the last 4 games. This team screams upset in Sections to someone that will play a simple game and defend and get shots because they will give up goals in a Bunch!

Orono- Lost down the stretch to Delano and Armstrong/Cooper losing their gripe on the #1 seed in 2A. Slow starts have been an issue with this group and if they have one in Sections its Season Over.

Eveleth- The Hibbing loss who got beat out last night Section play will Haunt. Instead of 3 seed they get a 4 seed and date with Hermantown a round early.

Little Falls- Terrible loss to DL and have been shut out in 2 of the last 3 games. This team is on upset watch vs Sartell in Round 1 of 6A.

North Branch- Been a total collapse on a promising season after the State run last year. They have been very bad down the stretch a win over Mound is shining light but man has it been ugly at the end.

Both Mankato's- West and East should of been the Section Final now both have limped to the finish line in 1A.

My Predections
1A- Dodge County
2A- Delano
3A- New Ulm
4A- Mahtomedi
5A- Monticello
6A- Alexandria
7A- Hermantown
8A- Warroad

State Champ- Hermantown

Should be fun Playoffs are here!!

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:24 am
by elliott70
2/16/2020 FINAL
1 Hermantown
2 Warroad
3 East Grand Forks
4 St Cloud Cathedral
5 Orono
6 Delano
7 Mahtomedi
8 Alexandria
9 Duluth Denfeld
10 Thief River Falls
11 Greenway
12 Monticello
13 St Paul Johnson
14 Gentry
15 Armstrong Cooper
16 Little Falls
17 Pine City
18 Breck
19 Hutchinson
20 Dodge County

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 6:32 pm
by Stang5280
The regular season is complete, and the early rounds of the playoffs have already commenced. What a final week it was. The last thing I expected was to be making wholesale changes at the top of my rankings, but that is exactly what happened. Enjoy the final rankings of the season.

1. Warroad (23-2-0) [LW 3]
W 10-2 vs Lake of the Woods
The Warriors put a bow on their best regular season in over a decade by walloping their neighbors from Baudette. The only losses came against AA rival Roseau, and they were 3-0 against EGF and SCC. For all of the focus on their high-scoring top line, Warroad actually had the stingiest defense (1.44 goals against) and penalty kill (93.3%) in Class A. As the top seed in 8A, Warroad starts its bid for a first state tournament berth since 2010 against the winner of LotW and Bagley/Fosston
Next: Thu vs Lake of the Woods or Bagley/Fosston

2. East Grand Forks (18-4-2) [LW 4]
W 3-1 vs TRF, W 6-2 vs SCC
The Green Wave closed on a high note, sweeping the season series with likely semifinal foe TRF, and clobbering Cathedral in a twice-postponed contest. EGF needed an empty-netter to pull away from the Prowlers, but no late-game heroics were necessary Saturday as they overwhelmed the Crusaders from start to finish. The 8A playoffs should be an entertaining affair, but unfortunately only one team can emerge from this fracas.
Next: Thu vs Crookston or Park Rapids

3. Hermantown (18-3-4) [LW 1]
L 2-3 @ Lakeville South, L 2-4 @ Grand Rapids
The Hawks dip a bit after meeting their match against two ranked AA opponents. All of Hermantown's losses, and three of the four ties, were to AA foes. The Hawks are hard to rank, given that they did not play either of the teams ranked above them and tied Cathedral in early January, and I am not feeling particularly charitable. Hermantown should face little resistance in the 7A playoffs, at least until the final.
Next: Tue vs North Shore

4. St. Cloud Cathedral (20-3-1) [LW 2]
W 5-2 vs Holy Family, L 2-6 @ EGF
The Crusaders' week started off well enough, with a comfortable victory over a decent Holy Family group, but boy did things spiral out of control from there. The Breck game for Thursday was cancelled, and Cathedral probably wishes the EGF one would have been as well. The Green Wave scored just 18 seconds in, and the rout was on from there. SCC's defensive lapses against better opponents are concerning, as they surrendered five or more goals six times throughout the season, and three times over the past two weeks. They are still heavy favorites to emerge from 6A, but there are definitely cracks in the armor.
Next: Tue vs Prairie Centre

5. Delano (19-6-0) [LW 5]
W 7-4 @ Jefferson, W 3-0 @ New Prague, W 4-2 vs New Prague
The Tigers rolled through three meetings with two mediocre AA opponents without too much difficulty, though they required four straight third period goals to pull away from Jefferson. Delano ended the regular season on a nine game winning streak, and their only loss in section play was against Orono back on December 12. The Tigers are somewhat surprisingly seeded second in 2A, though that slight is unlikely to derail their crash course to meeting Orono in the final.
Next: Wed vs SW Christian or Waconia

6. Orono (21-3-1) [LW 6]
W 3-1 vs Mound Westonka, W 7-1 vs Waconia
Following the damaging loss to Armstrong/Cooper last week, the Spartans bounced back with two section victories, including a season sweep of rival Mound Westonka. The 21 regular season wins tie the program best mark previously set in 2002-03 and 2003-04, which respectively ended in third and second place finishes at state. We'll see if Orono can recover some of the momentum they had during most of January, prior to the Delano loss. The Spartans kick off their bid to wrest the section title back from Delano as the top seed.
Next: Wed vs Kennedy or Providence

7. Mahtomedi (17-8-0) [LW 7]
W 5-2 @ Champlin Park, 4-0 vs Mounds View
The Zephyrs were not challenged much in mowing down two middling AA foes. Mahtomedi enters the 4A playoffs as the top seed and clear favorite, though there are some clear vulnerabilities. They did not play either of the two main challengers to their section crown (Johnson and Gentry), and were 0-4 versus higher-ranked opponents. Mahtomedi's scoring output is down a full goal per game from last season (3.88 vs. 4.84) as well. Things could get interesting in the semifinals if they have to face an unpredictable Tartan team who defeated them in January.
Next: Fri vs Sibley or Red Wing

8. Alexandria (17-8-0) [LW 9]
W 5-3 vs Sartell
The Cardinals slipped past Sartell in their only game action of the week. Alexandria has insisted on an even goalie rotation, despite Landyn James posting far superior stats (1.96 GAA and 0.917 SV%). We'll see if that continues into the postseason and, if so, whether it comes back to haunt them. 6A starts their playoffs early, and Alex should have no trouble with a Morris/Benson group that was a nice story but faced a weak schedule.
Next: Tue vs Morris/Benson

9. Duluth Denfeld (19-5-1) [LW 10]
W 5-1 vs Pine City, W 7-0 vs Duluth Marshall
After a disappointing road trip last weekend, the Hunters turned in two dominating performances. The Pine City win was impressive, as Denfeld stifled the Dragons' high-scoring offense and never let them in the game. From my limited research, the 19 regular season wins may be the most in program history, though I'm sure the main goal is to add three more victories and return to state for the first time since 1989. That journey starts against a Proctor team they blanked 5-0 last month.
Next: Tue vs Proctor

10. Thief River Falls (14-10-1) [LW 8]
L 1-3 @ EGF, W 3-1 @ Bemidji
It's like a broken record at this point: the Prowlers lost yet another close game to a top opponent. They finished 0-4 against the two teams seeded ahead of them, by a margin of only seven goals, including two overtime losses to Warroad. Unfortunately, TRF seems to match up less well with their probable semifinal opponent, EGF. Before that third game between the two rivals can happen, they will first have to get by Red Lake Falls.
Next: Thu vs Red Lake Falls

11. Gentry Academy (21-4-0) [LW 13]
W 5-2 @ SSP, W 7-4 @ SW Christian
The Stars continued to climb back up the rankings after accumulating two more wins, including an important section triumph over South St. Paul. For their efforts, Gentry was seeded third in 4A and faces that same Packers group in the quarterfinals. Although it is arguable that Gentry deserved the #2 seed over Johnson, that debate will almost certainly be settled in the semis.
Next: Fri vs SSP

12. Monticello (17-7-1) [LW 11]
W 5-2 @ Princeton, L 3-4 @ Buffalo
The Moose pulled away from pesky Princeton to complete an undefeated season within their conference and section, and were rewarded with the top seed in 5A. Monticello ran into a Braccini buzzsaw later in the week in a contest that mattered only for neighborly bragging rights. They may well meet up with Princeton again Saturday in the semifinals.
Next: Thu vs Sauk Rapids or Mora

13. Little Falls (18-6-1) [LW 12]
L 0-1 vs Detroit Lakes
The Flyers failed to close the season on a high note, falling to a mediocre Detroit Lakes team. While the result was largely inconsequential, it fails to inspire confidence in Little Falls heading into the playoffs. The Flyers draw a suddenly rejuvenated Sartell squad in the quarters, so they will have to pick up their play to avoid an early exit from the 6A party.
Next: Tue vs Sartell

14. Greenway (12-12-1) [LW 14]
W 4-3 vs Bemidji, W 3-2 @ Virginia
After a painful January, albeit against tough competition, the Raiders closed on a 6-0-1 run since turning the calendar page. Greenway climbed back to .500 in the process, actually finishing a half game better than last year. We'll see if they can replicate the magical playoff run. Greenway kicks off with Virginia, a team they struggled to put away Thursday night.
Next: Tue vs Virginia

15. St. Paul Johnson (19-6-0) [LW 16]
W 6-3 @ Minneapolis, W 6-2 vs Highland Park
The Governors garnered two easy wins over struggling opponents, and with that earned the #2 seed in 4A, thanks in large part to their head-to-head win over Gentry. Johnson posted its best regular season finish since 2005-06, when it was still competing at the AA level. Either the Govs or Gentry have a decent shot of ending Mahtomedi's string of three straight section titles.
Next: Fri vs SPA or Highland Park

16. Eveleth-Gilbert (16-9-0) [LW 15]
W 5-0 vs North Shore, L 2-5 vs STA
With the shutout victory over North Shore, the Golden Bears wrapped up their best regular season since 2002-03. Amazingly for such a historically successful program, Eveleth has not advanced past the 7A quarterfinals in 18 years. They hope to break that streak, and punch their ticket to Amsoil, against an International Falls crew they defeated twice already.
Next: Tue vs Int'l Falls

17. Hutchinson (16-8-1) [LW 17]
W 4-2 @ LDC, W 4-2 @ Waconia
The Tigers knocked off two conference competitors by identical counts, and iced the top spot in 3A with the win over rival LDC. Hutchinson finished with their best regular season mark since 2008-09, which coincidentally was the year of their last state tournament berth. While 3A is often chaotic, Hutch enters as one of the strongest favorites of any section.
Next: Thu vs Fairmont or Willmar

18. Breck (13-10-1) [LW 20]
W 7-2 vs North Branch, T 2-2 @ Century
An impressive week for the Mustangs, who stampeded past a full strength North Branch crew, and scraped out a road draw with a good Century team. That completes their first winning campaign in three years. Breck enters the 2A tournament as the third seed and faces off with spiraling Minneapolis in the quarters.
Next: Fri vs Minneapolis

19. Armstrong/Cooper (13-11-1) [LW 18]
W 6-3 @ Totino-Grace, L 0-7 @ Maple Grove, W 6-5 vs Osseo
It was a roller coaster week for the Wings, starting with a second straight major upset, this time against TG. A/C was quickly brought back to earth against Maple Grove, then survived a shootout with a mediocre Osseo squad. They will open up their first Class A playoff run as the #4 seed in 2A.
Next: Fri vs Mound Westonka

20. Dodge County (20-5-0) [LW 19]
W 7-6 (OT) vs Somerset, W 5-1 vs Worthington
The Wildcats capped off the regular season with 13 straight victories, though not without some late-game drama against a poor Somerset team. That steady performance earned them the top seed in messy Section 1A. Surprisingly, the 20 wins only ties a program record from 2006-07. However, Dodge County has never advanced beyond the section quarterfinals, and this young group is certainly poised to do that, and possibly much more.
Next: Thu vs Winona or Austin

Out: None

Others Considered: Faribault (16-7-2), North Branch (17-8-0), Pine City (19-6-0) Princeton (12-12-1), River Lakes (14-10-1), St. Francis (15-9-1), South St. Paul (10-11-4)

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:04 pm
by Stang5280
P.S. I make a point not to look at Elliott’s ranks before posting, so it was coincidence that ours ended up being similar.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:55 pm
by ClassAGuy
Stang5280 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:04 pm
P.S. I make a point not to look at Elliott’s ranks before posting, so it was coincidence that ours ended up being similar.
https://www.mnhockeyhub.com/news_article/show/1087616

WOW Gentry Academy who only loses 1 Senior (Backup Goalie) will bring back entire team plus will get kids off of the dissolving Tier 1 Program team.

Early Favorite for Class A #1 Next Year. MSHSL is gonna have to be very careful with this.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:04 pm
by goldy313
In deference to Dodge County they have been pretty unjustly put in AA since 2005 for the sin of allowing a few kids a chance to play high school hockey who did not reside in the Rochester or Owatonna school districts. So they have been cannon fodder for the Lakeville schools most years. Nobody in the section would play them so even if they had a good team, like in 06-07, they get the lowest seed.

Dodge County at one time or another was a co-op of Kasson-Mantorville (host), Bryon, Triton, Blooming Prairie, Pine Island, Plainview-Elgin-Millville, Dover-Eyota, Hayfield, Zumbrota-Mazzepa, and I believe Chatfield and Stewartville. Often times picking up a school because Rochester Lourdes had dropped them to stay under the AA cutoff. The Boystown of high school hockey.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:10 pm
by raidergrad72
Stang,
Thanks for all your hard work & in-depth knowledge of the A teams when you do your rankings. It is interesting to read all of your writings this season.
Thanks again.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:17 pm
by Puck8
ClassAGuy wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:55 pm
Stang5280 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:04 pm
P.S. I make a point not to look at Elliott’s ranks before posting, so it was coincidence that ours ended up being similar.
https://www.mnhockeyhub.com/news_article/show/1087616

WOW Gentry Academy who only loses 1 Senior (Backup Goalie) will bring back entire team plus will get kids off of the dissolving Tier 1 Program team.

Early Favorite for Class A #1 Next Year. MSHSL is gonna have to be very careful with this.
Careful of what? From the story, it looks like they’re following the rules and I haven’t seen any issues raised so far. Serious question, I just don’t know what they should be careful about.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:24 pm
by ClassAGuy
Puck8 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:17 pm
ClassAGuy wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:55 pm
Stang5280 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:04 pm
P.S. I make a point not to look at Elliott’s ranks before posting, so it was coincidence that ours ended up being similar.
https://www.mnhockeyhub.com/news_article/show/1087616

WOW Gentry Academy who only loses 1 Senior (Backup Goalie) will bring back entire team plus will get kids off of the dissolving Tier 1 Program team.

Early Favorite for Class A #1 Next Year. MSHSL is gonna have to be very careful with this.
Careful of what? From the story, it looks like they’re following the rules and I haven’t seen any issues raised so far. Serious question, I just don’t know what they should be careful about.
I know you are Gentry Guy Puck8 just also know in Class A if you bring in Tier 1 kids and you guys all the sudden ascend to the State Title game in the small school bracket they are going to be fielding calls all year.

Is the plan to at least go AA in the near future?

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:25 pm
by Stang5280
goldy313 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:04 pm
In deference to Dodge County they have been pretty unjustly put in AA since 2005 for the sin of allowing a few kids a chance to play high school hockey who did not reside in the Rochester or Owatonna school districts. So they have been cannon fodder for the Lakeville schools most years. Nobody in the section would play them so even if they had a good team, like in 06-07, they get the lowest seed.

Dodge County at one time or another was a co-op of Kasson-Mantorville (host), Bryon, Triton, Blooming Prairie, Pine Island, Plainview-Elgin-Millville, Dover-Eyota, Hayfield, Zumbrota-Mazzepa, and I believe Chatfield and Stewartville. Often times picking up a school because Rochester Lourdes had dropped them to stay under the AA cutoff. The Boystown of high school hockey.
Oh, I definitely agree with your sentiment, goldy, and always appreciate your insights about southern MN hockey. I didn’t really give context with my comment regarding DC’s playoff history, but obviously it isn’t so simple as I stated. I know the DC girls coach pretty well, and they have been reasonable successful in being competitive statewide; I would think that the boys have a chance to build something in Class A.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:29 pm
by Stang5280
raidergrad72 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:10 pm
Stang,
Thanks for all your hard work & in-depth knowledge of the A teams when you do your rankings. It is interesting to read all of your writings this season.
Thanks again.
You’re very welcome, and thank you for the kind words.

Doing the rankings can be a lot of work, but is also a labor of love. Elliott is always helpful and encouraging to me and deserves gratitude.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:32 am
by BP
ClassAGuy wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:24 pm
Puck8 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:17 pm
ClassAGuy wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:55 pm


https://www.mnhockeyhub.com/news_article/show/1087616

WOW Gentry Academy who only loses 1 Senior (Backup Goalie) will bring back entire team plus will get kids off of the dissolving Tier 1 Program team.

Early Favorite for Class A #1 Next Year. MSHSL is gonna have to be very careful with this.
Careful of what? From the story, it looks like they’re following the rules and I haven’t seen any issues raised so far. Serious question, I just don’t know what they should be careful about.
I know you are Gentry Guy Puck8 just also know in Class A if you bring in Tier 1 kids and you guys all the sudden ascend to the State Title game in the small school bracket they are going to be fielding calls all year.

Is the plan to at least go AA in the near future?

The plan is for them to go AA in the next go around. At least - the top 6-7 guys of the U16 team will be playing NDTP, USHL and NAHL - they won't be playing HS next year. The rest will play with the HS team.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 9:37 am
by Puck8
BP wrote:
Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:32 am
ClassAGuy wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:24 pm
Puck8 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:17 pm


Careful of what? From the story, it looks like they’re following the rules and I haven’t seen any issues raised so far. Serious question, I just don’t know what they should be careful about.
I know you are Gentry Guy Puck8 just also know in Class A if you bring in Tier 1 kids and you guys all the sudden ascend to the State Title game in the small school bracket they are going to be fielding calls all year.

Is the plan to at least go AA in the near future?

The plan is for them to go AA in the next go around. At least - the top 6-7 guys of the U16 team will be playing NDTP, USHL and NAHL - they won't be playing HS next year. The rest will play with the HS team.
That is a fair assessment.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 9:41 am
by USA218
Stang5280 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:29 pm
raidergrad72 wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:10 pm
Stang,
Thanks for all your hard work & in-depth knowledge of the A teams when you do your rankings. It is interesting to read all of your writings this season.
Thanks again.
You’re very welcome, and thank you for the kind words.

Doing the rankings can be a lot of work, but is also a labor of love. Elliott is always helpful and encouraging to me and deserves gratitude.
Stang, you do a phenomenal job on class A and you put obvious time and thought into your rationale. Greatly appreciate your insight.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 2:59 pm
by Stang5280
I am not going to bother posting my picks for sections since they are incredibly chalky. Instead, I’ll try to identify a bracket buster (3 seed or below) that could emerge from each section.

1A: Faribault
2A: Armstrong/Cooper
3A: New Ulm
4A: Gentry Academy
5A: Princeton
6A: Little Falls, I guess
7A: Greenway, I guess
8A: Thief River Falls, I guess

Still not the most exciting, but a little more so than me picking almost all #1 seeds to advance. Princeton as a #5 is probably the biggest wildcard of the list, and on some level I believe in them the most of the lower seeds.

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 3:28 pm
by elliott70
Stang5280 wrote:
Mon Feb 17, 2020 2:59 pm
I am not going to bother posting my picks for sections since they are incredibly chalky. Instead, I’ll try to identify a bracket buster (3 seed or below) that could emerge from each section.

1A: Faribault
2A: Armstrong/Cooper
3A: New Ulm
4A: Gentry Academy
5A: Princeton
6A: Little Falls, I guess
7A: Greenway, I guess
8A: Thief River Falls, I guess

Still not the most exciting, but a little more so than me picking almost all #1 seeds to advance. Princeton as a #5 is probably the biggest wildcard of the list, and on some level I believe in them the most of the lower seeds.
New Ulm is right.....

Re: Final Regular Season A Rankings for 2/16/20

Posted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 6:43 pm
by karl(east)
Thanks once again to my Class A counterparts for their work this season! I'm glad to see how this has taken off over the years and learn lots just by reading this every week. This Class A Tourney is setting up to be an excellent one and I'm looking forward to following, perhaps even more closely than usual.