Turning Points

The Latest 400 or so Topics

Moderators: Mitch Hawker, east hockey, karl(east)

Brodziak Fan Club
Posts: 66
Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2020 1:01 pm

Turning Points

Post by Brodziak Fan Club » Sun Mar 29, 2020 11:21 am

These could be turning points in a single season, turning points for a program as a whole, or events that caused the entire state landscape to change. I'll start with a couple season-turning points for my Edina Hornets. Apologies in advance, blueblood :) .

February 11th, 2010
Minnetonka at Edina. The Skippers (20-0-1) rolled into Braemar on a season-long tear. They had already beaten the Hornets (13-6-2) twice: 3-2 in the Schwan Cup finals and a 7-1 drubbing at Pagel. Edina was in the midst of a rough mid-season slump, with a record of 1-4-1 in their previous six games.

Edina played possibly their worst period of the season in the 1st, trailing 4-0 after a parade to the penalty box that would make New York City blush on Thanksgiving Day. I actually had a friend call to ask me for a favor during the 1st intermission. Assuming the game was over for all intents and purposes, I obliged and left. I'm not sure what was said between periods 1 and 2, but Edina scored three goals in the 2nd and tied it with 4:56 left in regulation on a goal from a freshman by the name of Louie Nanne. Future New York Ranger Steven Fogarty scored the winner in overtime. It was the beginning of a 10-game winning streak to close the season as the Hornets won their first state championship since 1997.
Last edited by Brodziak Fan Club on Sun Mar 29, 2020 11:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

Brodziak Fan Club
Posts: 66
Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2020 1:01 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by Brodziak Fan Club » Sun Mar 29, 2020 11:25 am

January 11th, 2014

Edina (12-3) at Hill-Murray (10-2).

The Hornets had won a matchup between these two teams just two weeks earlier in the Schwan Cup Finals. The way this game looked, that may as well have been ancient history. The Pioneers skated circles around the Hornets, who looked slow, disinterested, and undisciplined – not a good look for arguably the most talented high school team of the decade. Hill-Murray took a 4-0 lead into the 3rd period. 10 minutes into the 3rd it was 6-0. I’ll never forget the look on Curt Giles’ face as the Aldrich PA Announcer stated “because Hill-Murray has a six goal lead, this game will now be played under running time.” You don’t put Edina into running time. It just doesn’t happen (although 2010 Minnetonka would beg to differ). The Hornets did their best to muck up the game. The 3rd period was about as cheap and ugly as it gets – instigated by Edina but the Pioneers were glad to reply. Edina ended up with 8 penalties for 24 minutes in the final frame, leaving them with a grand total of 13 and 34 for the game. Meanwhile, Hill-Murray finished the game with 20 minutes of penalties on 10 infractions. I don’t think I have ever been so disappointed in my team. The effort they displayed that night was embarrassing. Miguel Fidler scored a meaningless goal to make the final score 6-1 and the Hornets had a 35-minute bus ride back to Braemar. They wouldn’t be getting into their cars or picked up by their parents any time soon, though. Giles told them to tell their parents they would be returning late that night. He brought them into the hallowed West rink, with state championship banners earned by past teams hanging over them. This team hadn’t earned anything, and Curt made sure they knew it. He bag skated them into the late night hours. This collection of stars went 13-0-1 the rest of the way, outscoring opponents 72-18.

blueblood
Posts: 2546
Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 8:36 am

Re: Turning Points

Post by blueblood » Sun Mar 29, 2020 1:22 pm

January 25, 2018

Minnetonka rolled into Braemar with a 14-1-2 record and the #1 ranking in Class AA. Edina rolled to an 8-2 victory, dropping the Skippers to #4 in Class AA behind, Edina, Duluth East and St. Thomas; in the next weekly LPH Hockey Poll. Following the loss, the Skippers go on a roll to their first AA title winning 13 straight games to close out the season.

During that span they outscored their opponents 83-28, avenging their only 2 losses of the season to Edina, in front of the largest (to date) crowd at the Pagel Center 5-3 on February 10th; and one month later on March 10th, the Skippers took down the Hounds 5-2.
Play Like a Champion Today

Brodziak Fan Club
Posts: 66
Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2020 1:01 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by Brodziak Fan Club » Sun Mar 29, 2020 1:30 pm

Nice comeback, blueblood :)

WarmUpTheBus
Posts: 691
Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 1:24 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by WarmUpTheBus » Sun Mar 29, 2020 3:02 pm

Greg Trebil going from the Coach of the Jefferson Bantam A team to Head Coach at Holy Angels in 1996 marked the beginning of the end for Jefferson.

gopherpuck516
Posts: 236
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 11:59 am

Re: Turning Points

Post by gopherpuck516 » Sun Mar 29, 2020 3:34 pm

WarmUpTheBus wrote:
Sun Mar 29, 2020 3:02 pm
Greg Trebil going from the Coach of the Jefferson Bantam A team to Head Coach at Holy Angels in 1996 marked the beginning of the end for Jefferson.
Good point - it definitely prematurely ended their run as a dominant team in the state. They could’ve won another championship or two had the players who kickstarted AHA’s great run stayed at Jefferson. But in the end, it was the changing demographics of the metro area that really ended their run. They were a power as recently as 2010, but like Burnsville, they ran into Edina’s return to glory which usually ended their seasons in Sections.

grindiangrad-80
Posts: 2484
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2006 8:00 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by grindiangrad-80 » Sun Mar 29, 2020 6:58 pm

In my opinion the most important win GR history was in 1972 in the quarterfinals of their first trip to state. They had a matchup with a very good Edina Hornet team who was heavily favored. Somehow Rapids overcame the jitters of their first ever appearance and pulled off a victory. They went on to take 2nd losing to I Falls in the championship. That started a fantastic run for the Halloween Machine.

I’ve often wondered how their program would have been different if they hadn’t won that game.

blueblood
Posts: 2546
Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 8:36 am

Re: Turning Points

Post by blueblood » Sun Mar 29, 2020 9:33 pm

I like this topic BFC.
Play Like a Champion Today

hockey59
Posts: 1700
Joined: Mon May 22, 2006 11:01 am

Re: Turning Points

Post by hockey59 » Mon Mar 30, 2020 8:58 am

In 2015, DE lost to Anoka 5-3 on a Tuesday night in late January at Anoka. After the game, MR told a highly connected MN Hockey org. guy that Anoka was a solid team, had 3 good lines & a good goalie. The following Saturday, DE tied #2 ranked ER at ER (utilizing a 2-3 trap) and the rest is history, DE then upset ER in the 7AA Final and finished 2nd at State to LVN undefeated team. One year later in late January, on a Tuesday night, Anoka played DE at Heritage & got pounded by DE for their 5th straight loss. Then on Thursday night, Anoka trailed Andover 3-1 with less than 2 minutes remaining in the 3rd, pulled their goalie, scored 2 goals to tie the game, then Anoka won in OT. Anoka then played MG on Saturday & beat them 4-3 to secure the 3rd seed in section 5AA with MG the 4th seed. In the 5AA playoffs, Anoka beat Centennial 6-2 (after losing to them 5 straight times over the past 2 seasons) and 9th grader Trevor Janicke led MG to a huge upset over Blaine. Anoka then beat MG in the 5AA final for its first appearance at State in 13 years (since winning AA State in 2003).
Last edited by hockey59 on Mon Mar 30, 2020 10:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

Brodziak Fan Club
Posts: 66
Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2020 1:01 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by Brodziak Fan Club » Mon Mar 30, 2020 10:56 am

We're getting some awesome stories here. Keep 'em coming!

elliott70
Posts: 13668
Joined: Thu Jan 08, 2004 3:47 pm
Location: Bemidji

Re: Turning Points

Post by elliott70 » Mon Mar 30, 2020 11:54 am

The corner of Harding and Hoover

DubCHAGuy
Posts: 403
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2007 12:44 am

Re: Turning Points

Post by DubCHAGuy » Mon Mar 30, 2020 2:33 pm

2004 class A semifinals. Breck vs. South St. Paul

Private schools had begun taking over the class A tournament and a few other than Hill-Murray were starting to make noise in AA, fueling the dislike by the casual tourney go-er. Meanwhile the programs at the inner-city and first ring suburb schools that were once powers of the 70's and 80's were falling off quickly.

Until this game you never had a hard time finding a general admission seat at a class A tourney game. The lower bowl was packed at 11am to see Breck's star Blake Wheeler, who produced more scoring chances than I'd ever seen a player create in a single game, while SSP goalie Alex Stalock put on a show playing as 1/2 goalie 1/2 defensemen and had the arena buzzing. I don't know what the shots were but I'd guess 50-20 in favor of Breck. One electrifying Wheeler rush after another was turned away by Stalock and the score remained 0-0 midway through the 3rd period. Finally the dam broke and Breck scored 2 quick ones. Then in the blink of an eye SSP somehow responded with 2 goals of their own in a 2 minute stretch. A photo of the celebration of the tying goal by Alex's brother Nick with 2 minutes to play in the game would make Sports Illustrated.

It looked like it was headed for overtime but before anyone could take their seat, a Breck centering pass in the final minute banked off an SSP defensemen into the net and the rest is history. Wheeler and Stalock now play for rival NHL teams. Breck would go on to win the title in a 7-2 route of Orono (who had upset TJ Oshie's Warroad team) the next day before adding more titles in 2009 & 2010 and a handful of other hardware. SSP hasn't been back to the tournament since and likely never will be.

TTpuckster
Posts: 2542
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2006 8:26 am
Location: State of Hockey

Re: Turning Points

Post by TTpuckster » Mon Mar 30, 2020 2:42 pm

elliott70 wrote:
Mon Mar 30, 2020 11:54 am
The corner of Harding and Hoover
Hey, back to your bunker!!
What is a Green Wave anyway?

East Side Pioneer Guy
Posts: 729
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by East Side Pioneer Guy » Mon Mar 30, 2020 9:09 pm

Brodziak Fan Club wrote:
Sun Mar 29, 2020 11:21 am
These could be turning points in a single season, turning points for a program as a whole, or events that caused the entire state landscape to change. I'll start with a couple season-turning points for my Edina Hornets. Apologies in advance, blueblood :) .

February 11th, 2010
Minnetonka at Edina. The Skippers (20-0-1) rolled into Braemar on a season-long tear. They had already beaten the Hornets (13-6-2) twice: 3-2 in the Schwan Cup finals and a 7-1 drubbing at Pagel. Edina was in the midst of a rough mid-season slump, with a record of 1-4-1 in their previous six games.

Edina played possibly their worst period of the season in the 1st, trailing 4-0 after a parade to the penalty box that would make New York City blush on Thanksgiving Day. I actually had a friend call to ask me for a favor during the 1st intermission. Assuming the game was over for all intents and purposes, I obliged and left. I'm not sure what was said between periods 1 and 2, but Edina scored three goals in the 2nd and tied it with 4:56 left in regulation on a goal from a freshman by the name of Louie Nanne. Future New York Ranger Steven Fogarty scored the winner in overtime. It was the beginning of a 10-game winning streak to close the season as the Hornets won their first state championship since 1997.
I attended the entirety of this game, having no friends to ask favors of me. It was a weeknight affair, but I made the cross-Metro journey in anticipation of a great game. i was not disappointed.

Tonka just blitzed to home white clad Hornets in the first period. It was 4-0, but it could easily have been 6 or even 7-0.

The rest of the game was fairly even, with Edina slowly clawing their way back into the game. It was just nuts Nanne got the tying goal.

Sports reflect life. Whether it's in the context of sports, business, or family or institutional crisis, it's imperative to have an "old bull" around. You need someone who's been through trying times in the past, and can stay calm and not panic. For youth athletic teams, the old bull is the coach, but team leaders can augment that & take their cue from the coach.

East Side Pioneer Guy
Posts: 729
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by East Side Pioneer Guy » Mon Mar 30, 2020 9:13 pm

Brodziak Fan Club wrote:
Sun Mar 29, 2020 11:25 am
January 11th, 2014

Edina (12-3) at Hill-Murray (10-2).

The Hornets had won a matchup between these two teams just two weeks earlier in the Schwan Cup Finals. The way this game looked, that may as well have been ancient history. The Pioneers skated circles around the Hornets, who looked slow, disinterested, and undisciplined – not a good look for arguably the most talented high school team of the decade. Hill-Murray took a 4-0 lead into the 3rd period. 10 minutes into the 3rd it was 6-0. I’ll never forget the look on Curt Giles’ face as the Aldrich PA Announcer stated “because Hill-Murray has a six goal lead, this game will now be played under running time.” You don’t put Edina into running time. It just doesn’t happen (although 2010 Minnetonka would beg to differ). The Hornets did their best to muck up the game. The 3rd period was about as cheap and ugly as it gets – instigated by Edina but the Pioneers were glad to reply. Edina ended up with 8 penalties for 24 minutes in the final frame, leaving them with a grand total of 13 and 34 for the game. Meanwhile, Hill-Murray finished the game with 20 minutes of penalties on 10 infractions. I don’t think I have ever been so disappointed in my team. The effort they displayed that night was embarrassing. Miguel Fidler scored a meaningless goal to make the final score 6-1 and the Hornets had a 35-minute bus ride back to Braemar. They wouldn’t be getting into their cars or picked up by their parents any time soon, though. Giles told them to tell their parents they would be returning late that night. He brought them into the hallowed West rink, with state championship banners earned by past teams hanging over them. This team hadn’t earned anything, and Curt made sure they knew it. He bag skated them into the late night hours. This collection of stars went 13-0-1 the rest of the way, outscoring opponents 72-18.
I did not attend this game, but a friend did. He said that after the game, Pat Regan (HM '76) was talking to Giles outside the Edina locker room. They'd played together in college (UMD?). One of Giles' assistants approached & said something about "We got the time." Regan asked if there would be a bag skate. "Don't be too hard on them."

East Side Pioneer Guy
Posts: 729
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by East Side Pioneer Guy » Mon Mar 30, 2020 9:25 pm

Being a Hill fan, I followed Burnsville closely in the 80's. Coach Tom Oseiki had an interview, where he mentioned that in "82 his team was surprised to make it to the section final, where they lost. But the next year, they not only expected to make the final, they expected to win the final. Which they did.

His point was that expecting to well made a huge difference. One of my boys played for Johnson youth hockey some time back. They always lost to Highland, from mites on up. Then, in bantams, they beat them 4-0, in their shed. It was so cool, they'd never done that. I can't recall who won the regular season rematch.

But then they met again in the district final. I just knew Highland would win that game. They'd been in championship games before, but not my son's team. a lot of sports success is psychology. My son's coach needed to get his kids jacked up, tell them they deserved to be there, deserved to win that game, that those Highland guys were their bitches. He needed to tell them they were the better team, and that they were going to go out & play their game & be champions. He didn't, & they lost.

karl(east)
Posts: 6251
Joined: Tue Jul 17, 2007 9:03 pm
Contact:

Re: Turning Points

Post by karl(east) » Mon Mar 30, 2020 10:46 pm

Fun topic. Hockey59 beat me to the obvious one in recent memory for the Greyhounds. I wasn't at the Anoka loss, but that certainly felt like rock bottom for an East team that didn't look like it was going anywhere. I was, however, at the game at Elk River a few nights later when the Hounds busted out that wacky 2-3 and pulled out the tie in a pretty even-looking game. That Elks team was the real deal: it had 7 D-I players on it, whereas East's only front-line talent was very, very young; a freshman Garrett Worth scored the Hounds' lone goal that night. I walked out of that barn that night thinking hey, you know what, why couldn't this team go on a run? The rest is history.

Going further back, March 9, 1995 was certainly a watershed moment for high school hockey, when Dave Spehar became a household name and East ended the Jefferson dynasty in convincing fashion. The other memorable one for an East team was their loss to Denfeld on January 8, 2013. That was their only loss to the Hunters in the past 25 years. They hung the paper with that headline up in the locker room for the rest of the season and won 17 in a row after that game before falling to Edina in the semis in a one-goal contest. Great showing by a team that had a strong senior class but was otherwise supposed to be on the decline after graduating that elite 2012 group.

Moving away from the Hounds (but sticking with some Elk River misery), the 2017 7AA semifinal between Grand Rapids and Elk River is another obvious one. The Thunderhawks had been absolutely sleepwalking down the stretch; I remember attending their loss to Cloquet that relegated them to the 4-seed, and knivesy and I were just gawking at how flat they looked. For two-plus periods, it looked like just more of the same, and Elk River was marching toward the section final. I've never seen a team flip a switch as decisively as the Halloween Machine did in that third period, and they never looked back from there.

blueblood
Posts: 2546
Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 8:36 am

Re: Turning Points

Post by blueblood » Tue Mar 31, 2020 9:58 am

December 2014; Schwan's Cup Gold Bracket - Day 3

The team I formerly coached was playing at the SuperRink in the Bronze Division of the Schwan's Cup. The Duluth East vs. Eastview "friendship game." preceded our game and we were in the locker room next to the Hounds.

When they came off the ice following the loss (OT?) the players were in shock, disbelief, pissed off, after losing three straight. They looked to be in a complete mess, both emotionally and mentally, and I would have never thought they would have reached the finals that year.
Play Like a Champion Today

Brodziak Fan Club
Posts: 66
Joined: Fri Jan 17, 2020 1:01 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by Brodziak Fan Club » Tue Mar 31, 2020 10:48 am

karl(east) wrote:
Mon Mar 30, 2020 10:46 pm
Moving away from the Hounds (but sticking with some Elk River misery), the 2017 7AA semifinal between Grand Rapids and Elk River is another obvious one. The Thunderhawks had been absolutely sleepwalking down the stretch; I remember attending their loss to Cloquet that relegated them to the 4-seed, and knivesy and I were just gawking at how flat they looked. For two-plus periods, it looked like just more of the same, and Elk River was marching toward the section final. I've never seen a team flip a switch as decisively as the Halloween Machine did in that third period, and they never looked back from there.
That Grand Rapids team is so intriguing to me. I feel like a great documentary could be made about their season. Their chapter in Tourney Time is very interesting. There is a lot of general stuff about discipline and attitude issues. I'm sure those of you in "the know" have more specifics. I would love to know more but I'm not sure this is the place for that.

I could quote and respond to literally every story and anecdote in this thread. Thank you to all who have posted!

O-townClown
Posts: 4040
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2007 12:22 pm
Location: Typical homeboy from the O-Town

Re: Turning Points

Post by O-townClown » Tue Mar 31, 2020 1:09 pm

2019-20

Pioneers went 3-5-2 over a month into mid-January and then played better than any other team the rest of the way en route to the state title.
Be kind. Rewind.

hockey59
Posts: 1700
Joined: Mon May 22, 2006 11:01 am

Re: Turning Points

Post by hockey59 » Tue Mar 31, 2020 1:19 pm

O-townClown wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 1:09 pm
2019-20

Pioneers went 3-5-2 over a month into mid-January and then played better than any other team the rest of the way en route to the state title.
The team I witnessed Hermantown manhandling at Aldrich, in a game they literally did nothing...to convincing AA Champs, a gigantic turn around in a short time span ☝️

BlueLineSpecial
Posts: 625
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 7:42 am
Location: RIGHT BEHIND YOU!!!!

Re: Turning Points

Post by BlueLineSpecial » Tue Mar 31, 2020 9:32 pm

hockey59 wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 1:19 pm
O-townClown wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 1:09 pm
2019-20

Pioneers went 3-5-2 over a month into mid-January and then played better than any other team the rest of the way en route to the state title.
The team I witnessed Hermantown manhandling at Aldrich, in a game they literally did nothing...to convincing AA Champs, a gigantic turn around in a short time span ☝️
If you look sports championship results over the years, whether it be men/women/professional/college/high school, there are always stand-out examples of teams that for whatever reason seem to 'get it' all of a sudden and they go on a run. It clicks. I've actually felt that way with both of Hill's most recent titles ('08 & '20). They weren't the favorites either year, but got on a hot streak and rode it to a championship.

I'll give you a really silly, stupid example even in my everyday life. I play in a dart league. And there are nights where a team is statistically worse than your team. And they get some weird win and suddenly they're just crushing you and it seems like they can't do any wrong. The opposite has been just as true. Momentum and turning points are odd things in sports. It's one of the things that make sports so fun and interesting. You can literally feel the tide turn. And there's almost nothing more fun to watch than a team galvanize and realize their potential.

Fun topic.
The City of Hill Murray is beautiful this time of year

East Side Pioneer Guy
Posts: 729
Joined: Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Turning Points

Post by East Side Pioneer Guy » Thu Apr 02, 2020 8:09 pm

BlueLineSpecial wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 9:32 pm
hockey59 wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 1:19 pm
O-townClown wrote:
Tue Mar 31, 2020 1:09 pm
2019-20

Pioneers went 3-5-2 over a month into mid-January and then played better than any other team the rest of the way en route to the state title.
The team I witnessed Hermantown manhandling at Aldrich, in a game they literally did nothing...to convincing AA Champs, a gigantic turn around in a short time span ☝️
If you look sports championship results over the years, whether it be men/women/professional/college/high school, there are always stand-out examples of teams that for whatever reason seem to 'get it' all of a sudden and they go on a run. It clicks. I've actually felt that way with both of Hill's most recent titles ('08 & '20). They weren't the favorites either year, but got on a hot streak and rode it to a championship.

I'll give you a really silly, stupid example even in my everyday life. I play in a dart league. And there are nights where a team is statistically worse than your team. And they get some weird win and suddenly they're just crushing you and it seems like they can't do any wrong. The opposite has been just as true. Momentum and turning points are odd things in sports. It's one of the things that make sports so fun and interesting. You can literally feel the tide turn. And there's almost nothing more fun to watch than a team galvanize and realize their potential.

Fun topic.
I agree. This is why I think seeding for sections & state should be based on one thing: which team do you think will win the tournament. Who cares who won or lost on Dec. 28th?

blueblood
Posts: 2546
Joined: Fri May 26, 2006 8:36 am

Re: Turning Points

Post by blueblood » Fri Apr 03, 2020 8:48 am

ESPG:

I hear what you are saying, but still trying to understand what parameters would be used to seed.

- Pre-season expectations
- Games in January & February
- etc.

Would there have been a difference in seeding for 4AA this year?
Play Like a Champion Today

elliott70
Posts: 13668
Joined: Thu Jan 08, 2004 3:47 pm
Location: Bemidji

Re: Turning Points

Post by elliott70 » Fri Apr 03, 2020 8:54 am

TTpuckster wrote:
Mon Mar 30, 2020 2:42 pm
elliott70 wrote:
Mon Mar 30, 2020 11:54 am
The corner of Harding and Hoover
Hey, back to your bunker!!

Got three rabbits and two Millennials yesterday.

Post Reply