Moorhead's Harper Bentz, left, and Grand Rapids' Joey DelGreco will be among the featured attractions when the teams meet Friday night in Grand Rapids. Photos by Loren Nelson, LegacyHockeyPhotography.com
Big game hunters - you know, hard-core fans seeking out the best games every night - better be prepared to put some miles on the their vehicles. We've hit a stretch in which many of the season's most compelling games are scheduled to be held in Grand Rapids, Roseau, Warroad, Moorhead, Little Falls and other points north. No problem. Just add an extra layer of clothing, aim for the Canadian border - or thereabouts - and hit the gas.
No. 13-2A St. Thomas Academy (10-6-0) and top scorer Tommy Cronin (24 points) face No. 5-2A Benilde-St. Margaret’s (9-4-0) and star seniors Tristan Sarsland and Adam Marshall Tuesday. … Casual fans just dropping into the season might wonder if they’ve landed in the wrong state when they see Northern Edge playing against Two Rivers Tuesday. Who and who? Not to worry, Northern Edge (5-8-1) is merely the combination of the St. Francis and North Branch programs while Two Rivers (7-7-0) is the new name for old Henry Sibley High School. … Prior Lake (7-7-0) needs a few big wins to return to the top 20 in Class 2A, and beating No. 10-2A Lakeville South (9-3-0) and top scorer Tanner Ludtke (21 points) Tuesday would certainly qualify as sizable. … No. 16-2A Lakeville North (10-2-0) ventures out of the South Suburban Conference Thursday to play Gentry Academy (11-3-0), last season’s state Class 1A champion. … Worthington (8-4-0) and Windom (7-8-1), southwestern Minnesota neighbors in the midst of solid seasons, square off Thursday in a game that will affect both the Big South Conference standings and Section 3A seedings. … Mankato West and Mankato East renew their intracity rivalry on Friday in a special setting — outdoors at Minnesota State’s Blakeslee Stadium. The game serves as a prelude to Saturday's televised Hockey Day matchup between No. 12-1A East Grand Forks (5-9-0) and Prior Lake (7-7-0). … No. 3-2A Hill-Murray (11-3-0) heads north to the venerable IRA Civic Center to face No. 8-2A Grand Rapids (12-3-0) and top scorer Joey DelGreco (41 points). …One of the state’s great emerging rivalries resumes when Chaska (8-5-0) and Chanhassen (10-3-1) meet Saturday. Chanhassen, led by sophomore Caden Lee’s nine goals and 18 points, has lost just once in its last 12 games.