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12-29-2012, 04:33 PM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Nowhere, WI
High School Hockey Holiday Tournament game reviews...
Holiday time means hockey tournament time across the State of Hockey
Written by Derek Felska on Wednesday, 26 December 2012
So after you've loaded up on a delicious Christmas meal and with oodles of other related sweets and delicacies of the season thousands of Minnesota hockey fans will be making their way to the local rinks. With the 'Winter Break' is an opportunity for communities all across the state to host all kinds of High School and youth hockey tournaments that keep hockey parents and players busy. These tournaments do not carry the glitz of the State Tournament but they are opportunities for teams to win some hardware to bring back to their respective school or hockey programs. Whether teams bring back a trophy or not, what is usually remembered by the kids who play in these tournaments are the times teams spend bonding before and after the games. That could be playing knee hockey in the hallway of the hotel or group dinners hosted by the parents. These memories can last a lifetime and it may sound cliche, but the memories these players forge are some of the best friendships anyone can ask for. I can still remember the holiday tournaments I played in, not as much about the scores but the fun things I did with those close friends I played the game with. Great times indeed.
More recently, I've turned my 'Winter Break' into an opportunity to go to some of these hockey tournaments to get my ultimate high school hockey fix. For the last 10 years, I've been attending the Premier Tournament hosted in South St. Paul's Wakota Arena. Over the years some of the participants have changed, but what has not is the high level of play as well as the reputation that some of these schools that compete in this tournament go on to play in the State Tournament not to mention its a chance to see some exceptional player who will go on to be either be drafted by NHL teams or play Division I or III college hockey. In just the last few years the Premier Tournament's participants have exhibited a number of Division I players like Hopkins' Archie Skalbeck (Colorado College) and Travis Boyd (Minnesota), as well as South St. Paul's Adam Wilcox (Minnesota) and Zach Palmquist (Minnesota State) and also Eagan's Will Merchant (Maine) and Michael Zajac (Princeton) just to name a few. But whether you're going to the Premier Tournament in South St. Paul or the Granite City Classic in St. Cloud or the Schwan Cup Gold Division at the Xcel Energy Center or the Home for the Holiday Tournament in Eveleth's historic Hippodrome, fans can be treated to some great hockey. So if you have nothing else to do; head down to your local arena and you'll probably find a full parking lot giving you an idea that holiday tournament is in full swing. I am going to cover 3 games that I had the opportunity to witness over the break and I hope you enjoy my game summaries as well as my own 3 stars of the game. So without further adieu here are the 3 games I attended.
Eagan vs. North St. Paul
Elk River vs. Maple Grove
Eagan vs. Hermantown
(Click on the link for the rest of the article)
Enjoy, I tried to make the game reviews sort of similar to what I did for Wild games. If anyone else attended hockey tournaments, please share what games you saw etc here. This could be a great discussion of some high quality tournament prep hockey!
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