#4 Eden Prairie
#5 Forest Lake
(First round is Thursday, all times CST)
11:00 #2 Blaine vs. Roseau
1:00 #3 Hill-Murray vs. Eastview
6:00 #1 Edina vs. Farmington
8:00 #4 Eden Prairie vs. #5 Forest Lake
Players to Watch:
Edina-It’s not much of a stretch to say that every player on Edina’s team is a D-1 prospect. Seven players have already made college commitments and a number of younger players eventually will at some point. They’re led by senior defender Grace Bowlby(Wisconsin), who is the smoothest, smartest defenseman in the state, and skilled power forward Emily Oden(Minnesota). But what separates Edina from the rest of the rest of the field is their depth with forwards like Lolita Fidler(Harvard), Sophie Slattery(Penn State), Anna Klein(UMD), Olivia Kilberg(Vermont), and Annie Kuehl.
Blaine-Blaine survived one of the state’s tougher sections to make it to the tournament. They’re an experienced team with five D-1 commits on their roster. Senior forward Paige Beebe(Bemidji State) leads the offense with her strong skating. Emily Brown(Minnesota) and Kenzie Wylie(St. Cloud State) lead the defense. Ramsey Parent(Ohio State) and Gabby Rosenthal(Ohio State) are gritty, versatile forwards.
Hill-Murray- The Pioneers are led by hard-skating, skilled forward Abby Boreen(Minnesota). Speedy forward Lindsey Featherstone(Bemidji State) and Morgan Helgeson(Clarkson) provide depth and support for Boreen. They have two big, physical defenders in Taylor Wemple(North Dakota) and Mariah Keopple, and one of the top uncommitted puck-moving defensemen in the state in Miranda Anthony.
Eden Prairie-Eden Prairie’s offense starts with Ms. Hockey finalist Naomi Rogge(Minnesota Duluth), and aided by some veteran forwards. Junior defenseman Crystalyn Hengler(Minnesota) has a unique combination of size and puck-handling skills that makes her one of the top defensemen in the state.
Forest Lake-The Rangers don’t have any D-1 commits, but have some players that could potentially draw interest, including junior forward Kenzie Rugland, and freshman goalie Josie Bothun
Eastview-The player to watch for the Lightning is Ms. Hockey semifinalist Natalie Snodgrass(UConn), who is a deadly sniper when she gets the puck low in the offensive zone.
Roseau-The Rams get a lot of scoring from the blue line thanks to leading scorer Ellice Murphy(Vermont) and Jenna Byfuglien. Freshman Annika Stoskopf averaged almost a point per game this year for Roseau.
Farmington-Leading scorer Ellie Moser(Bemidji State) scored goals for 16 of her 21 points this year.
#2 St. Paul United
(Quarterfinals are played on Wednesday)
11:00 #2 St. Paul United vs. Mankato East
1:00 #3 Warroad vs. Hibbing/Chisholm
6:00 #1 Blake vs. Alexandria
8:00 #4 Mound-Westonka vs. #5 Northfield
Players to Watch
Blake-Lots of choices here, starting with defenseman Madeline Wethington(Minnesota), who has already won a pair of gold medals with the US U18 national team. The Bears have a lot of great 9th and 10th grade forwards, while junior Sara McClanahan(Dartmouth) is their most consistent offensive threat.
St. Paul United-SPU’s top two forwards, senior Joie Phelps and junior Samantha Burke are both committed to Cornell. Phelps was a Ms. Hockey semifinalist and a strong power forward.
Warroad-Last year, Mariah Gardner(Minnesota State) led the entire state in scoring, but this year, linemate Madison Oelkers(Minnesota State) finished with four more points.
Mound-Westonka-Mound isn’t an incredibly deep team, but have a great forward in Ms. Hockey semifinalist Liz Schepers(Ohio State) and one of the best goalies in the state in Emma Polusny(St. Cloud State)
Northfield-The Raiders don’t have any D-1 commits at this point, but are led in scoring by a pair of blueliners in senior Brynn Puppe and sophomore Kate Boland.
Alexandria-Top defenseman McKenzie Revering(UMD) tore her ACL this fall, and missed much of the year, but returned late in the year and should play a lot of minutes for the Cardinals.
Hibbing/Chisholm-Hibbing relies heavily on the offense from senior leader Mallorie Iozzo(Minnesota Duluth).
Mankato East-Senior forward Ali Schreiber led the Cougars in scoring with 24 goals and 43 points.