Quantcast
skip navigation

Section seeds set, playoff brackets posted

By Trevor Squire, SportsEngine, 02/18/19, 9:00AM CST

Share

Top-seeded Blaine faces a challenging path to secure a state bid in Class 2A, Section 5, where several fellow Northwest Suburban Conference contenders await.

Top-seeded Blaine faces a challenging path to a Class 2A, Section 5 title. The Bengals' section is filled with Northwest Suburban Conference rivals whose regular-season matchups with the Bengals were tight. Photo by Earl Ebensteiner, SportsEngine

Top-seeded Blaine faces a challenging path to a Class 2A, Section 5 title. The Bengals' section is filled with Northwest Suburban Conference rivals whose regular-season matchups with the Bengals were tight. Photo by Earl Ebensteiner, SportsEngine

The section playoff picture was completed Sunday with the final tournament brackets being released. While many of the Class 2A fields have clear-cut favorites, Section 5 remains difficult to predict. Three different teams have represented the section — which is comprised of Northwest Suburban Conference teams — at the last four state tournaments.

The familiarity of competition has contributed to the parity, with these teams sometimes facing each other for the third time in the postseason.


Click the image above to view this year's section brackets

Blaine (19-2-2, 8-1-1), which earned the No. 1 seed, looks every bit like the top contender this year, winning its final 14 games of the regular season. However, No. 2 seed Maple Grove, No. 3 Champlin Park, No. 4 Centennial and the remaining section competitors are capable and eager to bring that streak to a halt.

The Crimson dealt the Bengals their first and only league loss of the season — a 3-2 overtime decision on Dec. 15. The defeat came two days after Blaine narrowly escaped Centennial in a 5-4 overtime victory, and in their second meeting with the Cougars, the Bengals used a trio of third-period goals to clinch a 4-1 win Jan. 17. Credit Centennial goalie Leo Troje for helping keep Blaine within reach in both games. The Bengals outshot the Cougars by a combined 82-43 but only held a 9-5 scoring edge.

Central Minnesota slugfest at the MAC

The St. Cloud Municipal Athletic Center is slated for what could be some of the fiercest competition in Class 1A this postseason with Section 6 rivals St. Cloud Cathedral, Sartell-St. Stephen and Alexandria entering the tournament as legit state contenders.

Alexandria is the defending section champ following a 3-2 overtime upset of St. Cloud Cathedral in last year’s final. It was just the beginning of the Cardinals’ unprecedented run to a second-place finish at state.

Can Alexandria make a return trip? To do so, the Cardinals will likely need to again knock off the top-seeded Crusaders (21-4), who went 7-0 against section competition in the regular season, including a 3-2 overtime win versus Alexandria.

The third-seeded Cardinals (18-5) may also have to deal with second-seeded Sartell-St. Stephen (17-7), and if the bracket holds, their matchup will be one to watch with both teams having proven their mettle by finishing the regular season with QRF's that are among the 10 best in Class 1A.

Defending champions poised for title defense

Defending Class 2A champion Minnetonka reclaimed its No. 1 seed in Section 2, positioning itself ahead of No. 2 Chaska, No. 3 Eden Prairie and No. 4 Holy Family Catholic. The Skippers seem poised to make another deep playoff run with balance on both ends, including an offense that outscored Minnetonka's section foes 11-2 in three regular-season victories. That was before the Skippers were pushed to overtime in a 3-2 victory over the Eagles, a Lake Conference foe, on Feb. 2.

Orono, the reigning Class 1A title holder, finished the regular season with a 7-2 record against Section 2 competition, solidifying the Spartans as the No. 1 seed in the playoffs. A 3-2 loss to No. 2-seeded Delano in the regular-season finale, however, is sure to leave Orono looking to start the postseason anew, while the Tigers hope to maintain a seven-game unbeaten streak. Mound Westonka and Breck, which claimed the No. 3 and No. 4 seeds, respectively, cannot be overlooked, adding to the intrigue of this postseason tournament held at the St. Louis Park Rec Center.

Click here to view all 2019 section brackets.

Hockey Hub Headlines

Feed for https://www.startribune.com/sports/index.rss2

Tag(s): Home  News Archive  MSHSL Conferences  Albert Lea  Austin  Faribault  Mankato East  Mankato West  Northfield  Owatonna  Red Wing  Rochester Century  Rochester John Marshall  Rochester Mayo  Winona  Fairmont  Minnesota River  Luverne  Marshall  New Ulm  Redwood Valley  Waseca  Windom  Worthington  Alexandria  Brainerd  Fergus Falls  River Lakes  Sartell-St. Stephen  Sauk Rapids-Rice  St. Cloud  Willmar  Little Falls  St. Cloud Cathedral  Blake  Breck  Minnehaha Academy  Providence Academy  St. Paul Academy   Breckenridge/Wahpeton  Dodge County  Duluth East  Ely  Grand Rapids  Holy Angels  La Crescent-Hokah  Minneapolis  North Shore  Southwest Christian/Richfield  Rochester Lourdes  St. Paul Johnson  Eveleth-Gilbert  Greenway  Hibbing/Chisholm  International Falls  Virginia/Mountain Iron-Buhl  Eden Prairie  Edina  Hopkins  Minnetonka  Wayzata  Cloquet-Esko-Carlton  Duluth Denfeld  Duluth Marshall  Hermantown  Proctor  Bemidji  Crookston  East Grand Forks  Moorhead  Roseau  Thief River Falls  Warroad  Hastings  Henry Sibley  Hill-Murray  Mahtomedi  North St. Paul  Simley  South St. Paul  St. Thomas Academy  Tartan  Bloomington Jefferson  Bloomington Kennedy  Chanhassen  Chaska  Benilde-St. Margaret's  St. Louis Park  Detroit Lakes  Northern Lakes  Park Rapids  Prairie Centre  Wadena-Deer Creek  Buffalo  Cambridge-Isanti  Chisago Lakes  Monticello  North Branch  Princeton  Rogers  STMA  St. Francis  Bagley/Fosston  Kittson Central  Lake of the Woods  Red Lake Falls  Andover  Anoka  Blaine  Centennial  Elk River/Zimmerman  Maple Grove  Coon Rapids  Irondale  Osseo  Armstrong/Cooper  Spring Lake Park  Totino-Grace  Champlin Park  Apple Valley  Burnsville  Eagan  Eastview  Farmington  Lakeville North  Lakeville South  Prior Lake  Rosemount  Shakopee  Morris/Benson Area  Cretin-Derham Hall  East Ridge  Forest Lake  Mounds View  Park of Cottage Grove  Roseville  Stillwater  White Bear Lake  Woodbury  Becker-Big Lake  Legacy Christian  Moose Lake Area  Mora/Milaca  Pine City Area  St. Paul Highland Park  Delano  Holy Family  Hutchinson  Litchfield/Dassel-Cokato  Mound Westonka  New Prague  Orono  Waconia  Gentry Academy  Class AA  Class A  Section 1AA  Section 2AA  Section 3AA  Section 4AA  Section 5AA  Section 1A  Section 6AA  Section 2A  Section 7AA  Section 3A  Section 8AA  Section 4A  Section 5A  Section 6A  Section 7A  Section 8A