Thursday night, Sibley Area beat Rosemount is District 8 Peewee A play 4-2 at the West St. Paul arena. With most of the D8 regular season over, it figured to be YHH’s last visit to the West St. Paul Arena. The arena was scheduled to be torn down in 60 days.
Those plans have changed. One last visit to the arena…no or maybe?
The West St. Paul city council has agreed to let multiple parties fund improvements to keep the arena operating through 2016; that is if the “compressor” holds up. If the “compressor” fails, the arena will be torn down.
West St. Paul City can no longer afford the arena and have made no plans to do with what is left. The City has run the arena with a capital budget of less than $5,000 per year for the last five years.
Sibley and Rosemount have played most of their D8 league schedule. Sibley is fielding 24 youth teams this year and the numbers are up from last year. Their peewee A team is having a great year. They are ranked #3 (out of 81 peewee A teams in the state) by YHH.
In District 8 play, Sibley and Rosemount can’t catch the top three teams in the league (Lakeville South AA, Lakeville North AA and Eastview AA). Those three teams have 35 points. The most that Sibley or Rosemount could get this year is nearer 30 points. But both teams have a chance to catch Eagan for fourth place.
In a normal year, fourth place would mean a bye from the D8’s single elimination round. With the league splitting in to two playoffs, AA and A, there is no bye for Rosemount. The Irish will be in a battle for fifth with Hastings.
The fifth place team will likely draw Eagan. A first round win in D8’s AA playoff is worth its weight in gold. Under this year’s AA playoff format, a win will automatically put the winner into a six team race for five seeds to the regionals. A loss will put the loser in jeopardy of being eliminated.
Sibley does not need to catch the top three teams or Eagan. The Warriors has a lock on the #1 seed to the D8 playoffs. The win last night clinched that and the Warriors are likely to draw Apple Valley the #4 seed in the D8 peewee A playoffs. A first round playoff win gets the winner a seed to East A regional.
In the game against Rosemount, Sibley dominated most of the first period play, but trailed 1-0 at the end of the first period. In a period with few stoppages of play, the Warriors set up in the Irish zone, moved the puck, and attacked the net.
The Irish’s Sully Lanoue scored the first goal of the game in the first period from the right slot. The goal came in the first minutes of play. Jackson Sabo got the assist. Rosemount’s goalie Benny Garrity stopped all 16 Warrior shots in the first period.
Rosemount pulled a checking penalty one minute into the second period. It resulted in a power play goal by Sibley. Sibley gained control of the puck in the Irish zone. They moved the puck low. Sibley’s Nicholas Castro scored a wraparound goal to tie the game 1-1 with 10 minutes to go in the second period. William Pope got the assist.
The next five minutes of play was a transitional up and down game. Both teams would move the puck from their end to the opponents’ zone, but both teams could not generate a good scoring chance. With 5 minutes left in the second period, Sibley scored. Chase Foley got a pass off the end boards left and one timed the puck past the goalie to put Sibley ahead 2-1. Nick Davison got the assist.
Rosemount came back after that goal and played their best hockey of the game, pressuring Sibley in the Warrior’s zone. But it was Sibley that got the goal. Joseph Gimberlain scored from the slot what turned out to the be the game winner in the last minute of the second period. It put the Warriors ahead 3-1. Grant Heselton got the assist. The second period ended 3-1.
Rosemount’s Grant Horsager jammed the puck into the net in the opening minute of the third period to cut Sibley’s lead to 3-2. It turned the third period into a good game. Brady Knowles got the assist.
The two teams battle each other for the remainder of the period. It became apparent that when the Warrior’s Brendan McFadden took the ice, the Irish had no answer to stopping his line from attacking the Irish net. That was left to Garrity. More than once, Garrity had to stop McFadden on shots from inside the crease.
McFadden did score late in the period after the Irish pulled Garrity. Davidson got the assist on McFadden’s open net goal.
Sibley A has 3 D8 games left; #34 ranked Rosemount AA has 2 games left. After last night, Sibley has one more D8 game to play at the old arena this year. They will play their last D8 home game of the season there if the “compressor” is functional.
Brendan mentions 10 players in this NTDP camp report including five from MN: Phillips (BSM), Lindberg (Moorhead),… https://t.co/U8eck01CoD