Orono (19-8-1) vs. East Grand Forks (No. 1, 25-2-1), 6 p.m.
Green Wave surging on
Scouting the Spartans: If Orono’s season of ups and downs continues on its current oscillation, fans should take hope. Orono started the season 2-3, won 12 of its next 14, then closed the regular season with 2-3-1 slump. The Spartans trended up in the Section 2 playoffs, defeating top-seeded Breck to earn their sixth state tournament berth. Orono skates three solid lines and three pairs of defensemen on a regular rotation, with an effective fourth line. Defenseman Jacob Flemmer and center Joey Luedtke are adept table-setters.
Scouting the Green Wave: A team can’t lose if the opponent can’t score, and no team in the field plays better in its own end than East Grand Forks. The Green Wave, riding a 17-game winning streak, hasn’t lost since falling to Green Bay (Wis.) Notre Dame 2-0 on Dec. 27. It allowed only 17 goals over that span. The fast and physical Green Wave clogs holes and takes away the middle of the ice. The top two lines of Dixon Bowen, Grant Loven and Tanner Tweten, and Brandon Loven, Jace Pesch and Reed Corbid, each have more than 90 combined points.
Worth knowing: This is the first time since teams have been seeded that one school earned the No. 1 spot in both the boys and girls’ tournaments. The East Grand Forks girls’ team was seeded first in the Class 1A bracket two weeks ago.