State Hockey Tournament (Day 1)

January 22

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[The Super “slummed” us again . . . the 340 Hotel, i.e., the top couple of floors of the St. Paul Athletic Club.  We’ve stayed here before for previous tourneys – 4 block walk to the ‘X’.  We had a gigantic suite with two bathrooms (for one night) . . . ]

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[Jeanne and Ken Howell were staying here also, down for other business.  But they said they had a room the size of a closet.  But then they went Groupon – ha!]

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[Did we mention the room came with a bottle of champagne?]

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[Hi!  We’re here!  At the ‘X’!  Again!]

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[Cards take the ice.]

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[The band was here . . . ]

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[Hockey moms were here . . . ]

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[Let’s get ready to rumbbbblllllleeeee!]

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[We’re cheering for the team in red.]

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[Goalie Sarah Finley (1)]

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[Team introductions on the big board.]

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[Ashton Oberg (3)]

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[Josie Minnerath (6)]

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[Anna Doherty (7)]

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[Marki Oberg (10)]

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[Marki and Megan Pesta (8), got out of order here?]

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[Kaia Illies (13)]

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[Mayson Toft (14)]

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[Kristin Trosvig (15)]

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[Hadlee Hansen (18)]

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[Calley Richardson (19)]

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[Alexis Heckert (20)]

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[McKenna Ellingson (24)]

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[Erin O’Kane (26)]

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[Talia Olson (27)]

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[McKenzie Revering (29)]

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[Madisson Gay (35)]

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[Taylor Breitkreutz (34), out of order again?]

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[Allison O’Kane (36) – I missed Olivia Kopp (40)?]

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[Head coach Molly Arola.  A little something I learned about Coach Arola just recently.  Our Cards were state class A champs in 2008.  That team only lost one game all year – 1-0, in OT, at Grand Rapids/Greenway.  Grand Rapids/Greenway went on to be state class AA runner-up that year to Eden Prairie.  Molly played on that Grand Rapids/Greenway team.]

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[The long red line.]

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[Remember, Cossetta’s after the game!]

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[Oh, we’re playing The Blake School.  Blake is defending state champions.  They are the No. 1 seed and have been ranked number one all year.  They have won more class A state championships than any other team.  They belong in class AA.  They’re finally moving up there next year.]

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[Alexis takes on all the Bears.]

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[What we all learned about why they are the No. 1 team is their ability to forecheck.]

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[The defensive duo of Mayson and Rev.]

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[Video covering the ref?]

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[Is that Alexis again?]

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[A Bear circles between McKenna and Mayson.]

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[Taylor on D, a solid year.]

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[Maybe the Cards have a numbers advantage?]

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[What makes them so hard to take is this line is two freshmen and a sophomore.  Makes it hard for the rest of the class to catch up with them.]

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[Cards enter the offensive zone, not an easy thing to do against the Bears.]

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[McKenna fighting for the puck.]

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[Face-off in our offensive zone.]

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[Alexis again.]

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[A face-off in their zone with Anna, Alexis, Josie, and Allison.]

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[Kristin and Josie]

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[Here’s that line again.]

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[We’re all even.  Skated with them the whole period.]

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[Three from the Super . . . ]

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[Period 2]

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[Oy, get on ’em!]

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[Looks like Kristin got the draw.]

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[McKenna on the attack – but whenever we did enter their zone with speed, they always seemed to have defenders around.]

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[Here comes McKenna again.]

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[Crossed swords?]

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[It was somewhere around this time that we had a great chance to score.  Kristin stickhandled in from the left and her shot looked like it hit the pipe.  We took several swipes at rebounds but couldn’t score.  I think we all felt if we had scored first . . . maybe?]

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[Josie takes a shot at it.]

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[They scored late in the 2nd.  Still a close game.]

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[Sarah was terrific.]

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[In the 3rd period, their forechecking was wearing us down.  When they got their 2nd goal, we knew how hard it would be to come back.]

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[Not quite.]

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[Coach Arola takes a time out.  Yeah, we played very well against what essentially is a Twin Cities all-star team.]

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[Close again.]

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[Just have to tip your hat to them.  But for the sake of competitive balance, glad they’re finally moving to class AA.  They’ve dominated class A for too long, winning the championship again in a not very close game.]

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[And a wrap-up from the Super . . . ]

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[After the game, as usual, we went to Cossetta’s for a fine dining experience . . . BECAUSE IT’S THE LAW!]

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[We’ll see you at Ridder tomorrow at noon!]

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You miss 100% of the shots you never take. ~  Wayne Gretzky.

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