It is section championship week in Minnesota boys high school hockey. Winners advance to the prestigious state tournament while losers fall one game shy of competing on the biggest prep hockey stage in the world.
Most section playoffs are into the championship round, though there are a few that have to play semifinal games before their section title games take place later this week. The state tournament is next week, Wednesday-Saturday, at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
Here's the schedule for Class 1A and Class 2A section games this week.
Class 1A section playoffs
All sections but 4A have advanced to the championship round. In 4A, the semifinal games are Wednesday between #1 Mahtomedi and #5 Two Rivers, and #2 Simley against #3 Chisago Lakes. Here are the section title games.
1A: #3 Albert Lea vs. #4 New Prague, Wed. 5:30 p.m. – Rochester Rec Center
2A: #1 Minneapolis vs. #2 Delano, Wed, 7 p.m. – St. Louis Park Rec Center
3A: #1 New Ulm vs. #2 Mankato East/Loyola, Wed. 7 p.m. – Mayo Event Center Mankato
5A: #3 St. Cloud Cathedral vs. #4 Monticello, Wed. 7 p.m. – Elk River Ice Arena
6A: #1 Alexandria vs. #2 Fergus Falls, Thur. 7 p.m. – St. Cloud MAC
7A: #1 Hermantown vs. #2 Duluth Denfeld, Wed. 7 p.m. – Amsoil Arena Duluth
8A: #1 Warroad vs. #2 Thief River Falls, Thur. 7 p.m. – East Grand Forks Civic Center
Class 2A section playoffs
All sections but 4AA have reached the title round. In 4A, the semifinals are Wednesday at Aldrich Arena between #1 Hill-Murray and #4 Gentry Academy, and #2 Stillwater against #3 White Bear Lake. Here are the section championship games.
1AA: #1 Lakeville South vs. #2 Lakeville North, Thur. 7 p.m. – Rochester Rec Center
2AA: #3 Chaska vs. #4 Prior Lake, Wed. 7 p.m. – Braemar Edina
3AA: #1 Cretin-Derham Hall vs. #3 #Eastview, Thur. 7 p.m. – Braemar Edina
5AA: #1 Rogers vs. #2 Maple Grove, Thur. 7 p.m. – Elk River Ice Arena
6AA: #1 Benilde-St. Margaret's vs. #2 Edina, Wed. 7 p.m. – Bloomington Ice Garden
7AA: #1 Andover vs. #2 Grand Rapids, Thur. 7 p.m. – Amsoil Arena Duluth
8AA: #1 Moorhead vs. #3 Elk River, Wed. 7 p.m. – St. Cloud MAC