Bayside Chatter: Hockey playoffs
By: Steve Gow, Lake County News Chronicle
By Steve Gow
The Mariner boys’ hockey team received the number eight seed for the section 7A playoffs which began Tuesday. They hosted Ely on Tuesday and the winner of that contest traveled to Duluth last night to play the number one seed Duluth Marshall. The semifinals will be tomorrow at Hibbing and Grand Rapids.
Greenway’s late season run where they defeated Silver Bay, Virginia, and Eveleth threw a monkey wrench into the seedings. The final seedings were Marshall, Hibbing, International Falls, Denfeld, Virginia, Greenway, Eveleth, Silver Bay, Ely, and Two Harbors.
The number one seeds in class A ended up as Rochester Lourdes, Breck, New Ulm, St.Thomas Academy, Hermantown, Little Falls, Duluth Marshall, and Thief River Falls. In AA they were Lakeville South, Edina, Eagan, Hill-Murray, Maple Grove, Minnetonka, Duluth East, and Moorhead. Duluth East and Hermantown were the top ranked teams entering the playoffs. Eden Prairie and St.Thomas are the defending state champions.
The girls state tournament began play Wednesday. The top seeds in class AA are Minnetonka, Roseville, Edina and Lakeville North. In class A the top seeds are Breck, Warroad, South St.Paul, and Red Wing. Only three of the number one seeded teams in AA made it out of sectional play. In Class A six out of eight made it in.
The Silver 12U team finished second in the district 11 tournament at Silver Bay and qualified for the Regional to be held in Silver Bay March 2-4.
The girls concluded their very successful season with a record of 18-10. I can guarantee no one saw this team winning 18 games and making it to the section finals when the season started. Here are my end of the season awards for the girls.
Rookie of the year goes to freshman forward Carrie Palmer and eighth grade defenseman Madison Roy. The two first-year players from Cook County showed steady improvement throughout the season that steadily led to increased playing time. Most improved player was a no brainer in going to junior goaltender Cassie Swanson of Ely. She took a questionable position at the start of the season and made it into an asset. Runnerup goes to junior defenseman Nicole Jaeger of Babbitt. Best offensive player is a tie between senior forwards Taylor Guzzo and Marina Carter. Carter set the single-season mark for goals and Guzzo set the mark in assists and points. Runnerup goes to sophomore Anna Carman of Cook County. Best defensive player goes to senior Shay Viola. Her best asset is her steadiness back at the blue line. She does such a good job that at times you don’t even notice her. Runnerup goes to Nicole Jaeger. Most valuable player goes to Carter, Guzzo, and Swanson. Each one had an outstanding season that led directly to the team’s success. Without any one of the three, the team would not have been nearly as successful.