Minnesota Sections PreviewFebruary 2, 2019
With another tough year for natural snow in the Twin Cities, all of the metro section meets have reverted to snowmaking venues. The weather looks good for sections, with hopefully any major cold snap avoiding the regiojn (we'll post all updates we receive in our Racing Outlook). The section races occur over four days, with two each day except for Tuesday when there will be three.
A couple of notes for coaches and skiers:
Here's our spectating guide for sections ...
- Section 1 Tue Feb 5 at Hyland Lake (Bloomington)
This will be a tight battle this year! In the girls race, there are four that have been at each other's heels all season - Violet Tessier, Lakeville South, Gabby Kraemer, Eastview, Brianne Brewster, Lakeville South, and Caroline Peterson, Northfield. All have a crack at the section title, with Tessier the odds on favorite. However, Winona's Anni Skillicorn is the reigning section champ, and if she brings her A game, she could easily top the field. On the boys side, expect a good race between Magnus O'Connor, Prior Lake, Matthew Berg, Burnsville, and Tom Beyer, Prior Lake. Teams to favored to advance are the Prior Lake and Eagan boys, and for the girls, Eastview and either Northfield or Prior Lake.
- Section 2 Thu Feb 7 at Theodore Wirth (Minneapolis)
Minneapolis Southwest is a perennial favorite in this section, and is a safe bet to advance both the boys and girls teams to the State Meet once again. But, the Eden Prairie boys have been coming on strong, and could press them for the section title. Edina girls look good for the second advancing team. For individuals, watch for a dual between Minneapolis Southwest teammates Victor Sparks and Henry Hall, and the same on the girls side with Zoe Camp and Kasia Bednarski.
- Section 3 Tue Feb 5 at Theodore Wirth (Minneapolis)
St. Paul Highland Park has owned this section in recent years and has only become stronger. Joining them at State will most likely be St. Paul Central. Molly Moening and Celeste Alden of St. Paul Highland Park will be frenemies on the trail as the compete for the overall title, Moening the returning champ and favorite. Peter Moore, SPA, is the clear favorite in the boys field.
- Section 4 Wed Feb 6 at Hyland Lake (Bloomington)
An already tough section with Forest Lake and Stillwater, the two superpowers may get pushed on the boys side from by a solid Mounds Park Academy team. Forest Lake boys the favorite to take the title, with a race between MPA and Stillwater for second. On the girls side, Forest Lake and Stillwater battled to a tie in their conference championship and you can expect more of the same for sections. Matt Bourne, SPA, is the frontrunner, but keep an eye on Tryg Solberg, White Bear Lake, and the scrappy Forest Lake boys to make him earn it. On the girls side, Libby Tuttle, Stillwater, will have to hold off one more challenge from Regan Duffy, Forest Lake, with a number of contenders not affording any games up front.
- Section 5 Wed Feb 6 at Theodore Wirth (Minneapolis)
Expect Sarah Olson, Blaine, to ramp up her push to State with a victory in the girls field. Cooper Lennox, Mora, wil be tough to beat in the boys race, but Joe Lynch, Spring Lake Park and CJ Young, Maple Grove hope to give him some competition. Favorites for the trip to State: Andover and Maple Grove girls, Elk River and Maple Grove boys.
- Section 6 Mon Feb 4 at Theodore Wirth (Minneapolis)
A State Meet preview as the two best skiers battle for the section title: Mara McCollor, Wayzata, versus Luci Anderson, Armstrong. A rested McCollor is expected to come out on top. On the boys side, James Schneider, Wayzata, may have his hands full with competition from Armstrong's Will Omodt. Armstrong girls should come out on top over the Wayzata squad, both going on to State. Armstrong boys are also expected victorious, with second place possibly contested by Mound Westonka or Wayzata.
- Section 7 Thu Feb 7 at Giants Ridge (Biwabik)
Another great battle of the northern powers! Duluth East and Ely girls look to go 1-2 at sections, with a resurgent Ely boys team taking charge of the section, with Marshall School and Cloquet-Esko-Carlton battling for second. Garrett Beckrich, Grand Rapids, is the returning State Champ and coming fresh from World Junior Biathlon Championships, he's now the favorite to take the boys title with his closest competitor rising star Jasper Johnson, Ely. Gretchen Haggenmiller, Duluth East, the clear frontrunner in the girls field.
- Section 8 Tue Feb 5 at Camp Ripley (Little Falls)
St. Cloud Cathedral-Sartell's Alex Nemeth remains the number one ranked skier, and his team is also top ranked - both sure bets for section titles and the trip to State. Moorhead and Bemidji boys may spar for that second team qualification. St. Cloud Tech's Wren Scott Lumbar and Bemidji's Kinley Prestegard will compete for the title, with Bemidji, Brainerd and Alexandria fighting over the two State meet team advancements.
* Team tie-breakers use the total time of the top four skiers. If a tie remains, they go to the fifth, etc. up to seventh.
* View the full High School Racing Calendar for more event details, plus access race updates, trail reports, and eventually results.
Watch for same day results and hopefully coverage from all the sectionals!