State Class AAAA field is strong

A new champion will emerge in Class AAAA this year, as only two teams, Totino-Grace and New Prague return from the 2005 field. Mahtomedi, the defending champion, was eliminated in their section finals by St. Thomas Academy.

Totino-Grace has the only perfect record, and all of the teams have previous tournament experience. New Prague and Northfield were the only Class AAAA teams to meet during the regular season. The New Prague Trojans won that game 33-25.

Friday's games are all at 7 p.m.

Mankato West (Section 2, 8-2) at Totino-Grace, Fridley (4, 11-0): The unranked Scarlets of Mankato West are making their third overall appearance. After starting the year 1-2, they have won seven straight and tied for third in the Big 9 Conference. The top-ranked Totino-Grace Eagles are making their fourth consecutive appearance and 17th overall. The Eagles outscored their opponents 110-7 in three section playoff games. They were the co-champions of the North Suburban Conference.

New Prague (6, 8-2) vs. Sartell-St. Stephen (8, 10-1) at St. Cloud State University: The Trojans of New Prague return for a second consecutive and sixth overall appearance. They were tied for No. 8 in this year's final AP poll. They started the year 4-0, lost two of three, and have won their last three games. They finished second in the Missota Conference. The No. 6-ranked Sartell-St. Stephen Sabres are making their eighth appearance, but their first since 1994. The Sabres were 7-0 going into their regular season finale, but lost to Brainerd 19-15. They scored a 10-7 overtime win over Alexandria in their section final. They won the Central Lakes Conference championship.

Northfield (1, 8-3) at St. Thomas Academy, Mendota Heights (3, 10-1): The unranked Raiders of Northfield are making their their eighth appearance. Northfield started 4-0, but then lost three of their final four regular season games and tied for third in the Missota Conference. They righted themselves in the Section tourney with three decisive wins. The Cadets of St. Thomas Academy, who were ranked No. 5 in the final AP poll, are making their 17th overall appearance. They opened the season with a loss to Holy Angels, but since then have won 10 straight. The Cadets were co-champions in the Classic Suburban Conference.

Benilde-St. Margaret's, St. Louis Park (5, 8-3) at Grand Rapids (7, 7-4): The Red Knights of Benilde-St. Margaret's are making their second overall appearance. They were 4-3 going into the season's final week, but since then have won four straight games. They finished fourth in the North Suburban Conference. The Grand Rapids Thunderhawks are making their third appearance. Neither team was ranked in the final AP poll. The Thunderhawks finished tied for fourth in the North Country Conference and have turned their season around after starting 1-4, winning their last six games.

Second round games are Thursday and Friday, Nov. 16 and 17 at the Metrodome, at 12:45 p.m. The winner of the game between Mankato West and Totino-Grace will face the winner of the New Prague vs. Sartell-St. Stephen game on Thursday, with the other semifinal on Friday.

The Prep Bowl will be played Friday, Nov. 24, with the Class AAAA championship set for 1:15 p.m.

Other state tournament games: (All games Friday at 7 p.m., unless noted)


Class AAAAA

Eden Prairie at Roseville

Hopkins at St. Cloud Tech

Rosemount at Stillwater

Lakeville South at Anoka


Class AAA

Glencoe-Silver Lake at Delano

Litchfield at Theif River Falls

Rochester Lourdes at Blue Earth

Becker vs. Proctor, at Duluth Public School Stadium


Class AA

Triton at St. Croix Lutheran, West St. Paul

MACCRAY at Hawley

Winona Cotter at Luverne

Eden Valley-Watkins vs. Moose Lake/Willow River, 3 p.m. Saturday at Duluth Public School Stadium


Class A

New Ulm Cathedral at Goodhue

New York Mills at Fertile-Beltrami

Rushford-Peterson at Springfield

Wabasso at Barnum


9-Man

Edgerton at Underwood

Ulen-Hitterdal at Stephen Argyle

Lanesboro at Wheaton

Cromwell vs. Mountain Iron-Buhl, at Virginia

To view tournament schedule click on Tournament Grid under Sports on the navigation bar at left.

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