Chanhassen's Chase: Today's story is the ninth in an occasional Star Tribune series that has followed the Chanhassen Storm as they pursued and landed the program's first trip to the boys hockey state tournament. To read the entire series, tap here.

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Chanhassen arrived on the team bus at Eagan's Civic Arena about 9:20 for a Friday morning skate and found a fan club waiting.

A fan club two members strong. A fan club for assistant coach Sam Sather.

Though small in number, "Team Sather," came out in force. Robert Braun, a college friend of Sather's since they attended Lawrence University in Appleton, Wis., and Kevin Braun, Sather's godson, held small signs and braved a chilly start to the morning. The Brauns are Eagan residents, and Robert connected Chanhassen coaches with the Eagan Civic Arena staff to reserve the ice.

Sather got a good laugh, especially over Robert's sign, drawn in crayon.

The visitors added a few personal touches inside, updating both scoreboards to read "Go Storm" above what typically shows the number of goals scored by the home team and its opponent.

Chanhassen regularly schedules 45-minute morning skates on Saturday mornings before a night game. The idea is getting players' bodies moving while focusing their minds into the upcoming task.

Friday's 6 p.m. Class 2A state tournament semifinal pits the Storm against a Cretin-Derham Hall team that pulled an upset of No. 3 seed Centennial in double overtime on Thursday. A "whiteout" is the Chanhassen student section theme.

"It's good to be out here," Chanhassen coach Sean Bloomfield said. "It's a good way to wake the boys up."

Goaltender Kam Hendrickson, flawless in the Storm's 7-0 victory on Thursday against Rochester Century/John Marshall, realized he was headed for an equipment malfunction. The blade on his preferred paddle, a Bauer Vapor, was in danger of breaking and falling off. The tape holding it together was on its last legs.

So goalie coach Jason Jensen intervened, transferring the same blessing he bestowed on the first Vapor stick to its replacement.

Goalies, man.