PREP NOTEBOOK: EGF Senior High and Warroad enter weekend with identical records, different strategies
East Grand Forks Senior High and Warroad enter the weekend with identical 18-2-1 records and different roads to success in boys hockey.
Senior High’s strength is defense and depth. Warroad also is solid on defense, but rather than the balance of the Green Wave, the Warriors have the state’s most explosive line.
“On paper it looks like two totally opposite teams, them with the high-scoring line and us being more of a defensive team,” Senior High coach Tyler Palmiscno said. “But I think our offense is underrated. And they play very good defense.
“But there is more than one way to win high school hockey games.”
The styles clash Saturday, when Senior High travels to Warroad for a 4 p.m. game. Senior High is second and Warroad third in this week’s Minnesota state Class A rankings.
Warroad’s high-scoring line consists of Jared Bethune (29 goals-49 assists—78 points), Kobe Roth (36-42—78) and Kyle Sylvester (31-43—74). Bethune and Roth are tied for the state lead in points; Sylvester is third.
Senior High’s top scorer is Grant Loven (9-19—28), who doesn’t rank in the top 100 in the state. The Wave average 3.7 goals a game compared to Warroad’s 6.1. But both teams are good defensively, Senior High with a 1.3 goals-against average to Warroad’s 1.9.
“Those three (Warroad forwards) have had a fantastic season,” Palmiscno said. “They’ve worked incredibly hard to do what they have. They’re hard to stop.
“Our offense is coming along. We’re healthy, which has helped our consistency lately. And we’re deep. We have three solid high school lines. Our game plan is to wear teams down with our depth.”
Which style works best? The first time the teams met it was a draw, as they played to a 2-2 tie.
“I expect more of the same,” Palmiscno said. “It is two teams that know each other very well. Usually, when that happens, it’s a close game.”
GF wrestlers to meet
There isn’t a lot on the line when Central wrestles at Red River in the annual intracity dual at 7 Saturday.
Central (17-9) has already locked up the No. 3 seed from the East Region for the Class A state dual tournament. Red River (2-18) has been eliminated from the state dual tournament. But Central is wrestling for a record.
“We’re tied for the school record for dual wins in a season,” Knights coach Matt Berglund said. “We’d like to get that record. And it’s the rivalry.
“We might be favored when you look at the records. But we’re not taking it for granted. Red River was probably favored the last two years and we won.”
Berglund said the most interesting match could be at 126 pounds, where Sean Murphy and Brandon Hanson are likely to meet. Berglund said both are likely to be ranked in the top six when the final state coaches’ poll comes out.
Central will have a new 100-win wrestler in its lineup. Kyle Terrill picked up his 100th career victory in a dual against Fargo South on Thursday.
Galstad a first
Madi Galstad achieved a first this week when she was named one of 10 semifinalists for the Minnesota Senior Goalie of the Year Award.
Senior High coach Jim Scanlan said the program has never had one of the 10 semifinalists for the goalie-of-the-year award.
“Madi’s had a terrific year,” Scanlan said. “Her numbers are phenomenal and this is, easily, the toughest schedule we’ve ever played. Madi makes all the routine plays and she’s shown the ability to make the spectacular plays when she’s had to.”
Galstad entered the weekend with an 18-1-1 record. She has a .950 save percentage and a 1.10 goals-against average.
Lions shootout set
The 19th annual Dick Compton Memorial South Forks Lions Shootout will be held Saturday at Grand Forks Central High School.
The highlight game of the boys basketball event figures to be Minnesota Class AAA Thief River Falls against Four Winds-Minnewaukan, the North Dakota Class B state runner-up last season. Both are top 10-ranked teams in their states this week in their divisions.
East Grand Forks Senior High kicks off the day by playing Mahnomen at 11 a.m. That’s followed by Fertile-Beltrami vs. Cavalier at 12:30 p.m. and Mayville-Portland-CG vs. North Border at 2:45 p.m., with the Thief River Falls/Four Winds-Minnewaukan game wrapping up the day at 4:15 p.m.