The team portion of the state wrestling tournament begins Thursday at Xcel Energy Center and three programs from the north or east metro plan to make some noise.
Quarterfinals in all three classes begin at 9 a.m. The Class 3A bracket includes No. 2 seed Anoka (23-2) taking on Stillwater (20-6).
The favored Tornadoes feature top-10 wrestlers in eight of the 14 weight classes, according to the Feb. 10 rankings in The Guillotine wrestling website. Junior Tyler Eischens (138 pounds) and senior Calvin Germinaro-Nahring (160) were ranked first at their respective weights. Stillwater eighth-grader Reid Ballantyne took the top spot at 106 pounds.
In Class 2A, Totino-Grace (17-3) seeks to upset No. 3 Scott West (19-0). The underdogs Eagles put four wrestlers in the top 10, led by sophomore Jake Svihel, who is second at 113 pounds.
Most section individual matches were held after this edition went to press.
Girls’ hockey awards
Four north metro girls’ hockey players are eligible to receive the top honors in their sport.
Emily Brown (Blaine) and Taylor Wente (Maple Grove) are two of the five Ms. Hockey finalists. Crimson teammates Breanna Blesi and Coco Francis are two of the five Senior Goalie of the Year finalists. The awards will be announced Sunday.
David La Vaque