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Holiday tournament time in high school hockey

By DAVID LA VAQUE, Star Tribune, 12/24/13, 11:22PM CST


The metro area offers up five hockey tournaments this week and one next week.

Schwan Cup boys high school hockey semifinal game. Hill Murray vs. Burnsville. Hill Murray's Mitch Slattery (28) brought the puck down the ice against the defense of Burnsville's Sam Dockry (19). (MARLIN LEVISON/STARTRIBUNE(mlevison@startribune.com (cq -

The metro area offers up five hockey tournaments this week and one next week as boys’ and girls’ teams compete for bragging rights against top-quality competition.



Schwan Cup gold division

When, where: Thursday through Saturday, Ridder Arena, University of Minnesota

Teams: No. 1-ranked Hill-Murray, defending Class 2A state champion and fifth-ranked Edina, Class 2A newcomer and sixth-ranked St. Thomas Academy. Others are No. 8 Duluth East, No. 10 Prior Lake, No. 11 Burnsville, Minnetonka and Class 1A’s top-ranked Breck.

Players to watch: Those headed to Division I include Hill-Murray freshman forward Joey Anderson (Minnesota Duluth) and senior forward Mitch Slattery (St. Cloud State), Burnsville junior forward Brock Boeser (Wisconsin), St. Thomas Academy junior forward Tom Novak (Gophers) and defenseman Seamus Donohue (Air Force).

Holiday Hockey Classic

When, where: Thursday through Saturday, St. Louis Park Recreation Center

Teams: Eden Prairie, ranked No. 3 in Class 2A, No. 4 Blaine, No. 7 Wayzata, No. 9 Benilde-St. Margaret’s (tournament host), No. 12 Maple Grove, No. 17 Bloomington Jefferson, No. 18 Lakeville North and Moorhead.

Players to watch: Eden Prairie’s Luc Snuggerud and Steven Spinner (both committed to Nebraska Omaha) and Wayzata’s Matthew Freytag (Wisconsin).



Big Breakaway Tournament

When, where: Thursday through Saturday, Braemar Arena, Edina

Teams: No. 3 Hopkins, No. 4 Edina, No. 8 Lakeville South, No. 14 Irondale, No. 15 Stillwater plus Class 2A teams Apple Valley and Grand Rapids/Greenway and Class 1A’s fifth-ranked Warroad.

Player to watch: Irondale forward Samantha Donovan has signed to play college hockey at Brown.

Centennial Holiday Classic

When, where: Thursday through Saturday, Centennial Sports Arena

Teams: Class 2A teams led by No. 2 Wayzata, No. 11 Dodge County, No. 13 Buffalo, No. 17 North Wright County plus Centennial, Elk River, Moorhead and White Bear Lake.

Players to watch: Buffalo forward Lindsey Roethke (Connecticut) and North Wright County defenseman Emily Achterkirch (Princeton) have made college commitments.

Doug Woog/Kaposia Classic Invitational

When, where: Dec. 30-Jan. 1, Wakota Arena, South St. Paul

Teams: Class 2A is represented by No. 7 Hill-Murray, No. 8 Lakeville North, No. 12 Roseville, No. 16 Mounds View and No. 19 Bloomington Jefferson. Top Class 1A teams include defending state champion and No. 2 Blake, No. 6 South St. Paul and No. 12 Hibbing/Chisholm.

Players to watch: Division I signees and future Penn State teammates Bella Sutton (Mounds View) and Christi Vetter (Lakeville North), and Sarah Bobrowski (Hill-Murray), who committed to Lindenwood.

Mid-Winter Meltdown

When, where: Thursday through Saturday, Eden Prairie Community Center

Teams: The state’s No. 1 team in Minnetonka, No. 5 Benilde-St. Margaret’s, host Eden Prairie, Eagan, Cretin-Derham Hall, Chaska-Chanhassen, Andover and Roseau.

Players to watch: Future Penn State teammates defenseman Kelsey Crow and goalie Hannah Ehresmann from Minnetonka and five Benilde-St. Margaret’s players bound for college: Kelly Pannek (Gophers), Ali Praus (New Hampshire), Caitlin Reilly (Penn State), Abby Miller (Syracuse) and Brittany Wheeler (Yale).

Worth noting

Six local prep standouts will be missing from the holiday tournaments but instead playing in Blaine for a chance to make a national team. The are goaltender Erin O’Neil, defenseman Grace Bizal and forward Nina Rodgers from Hopkins, defenseman Sydney Baldwin of Minnetonka and Taylor Flaherty of Lakeville North and Edina forward Taylor Williamson. They are among 28 players invited to the U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Winter Festival, held Friday through Tuesday at Schwan’s Super Rink. Players will be auditioning for spots on the U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team that will take part in the International Ice Hockey Federation Women’s Under-18 World Championship from March 23-30 in Budapest, Hungary.

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