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Bayside Chatter: Tournament season is upon us

The girls hosted the Cloquet Lumberjacks last evening and the boys will host the International Falls Broncos tonight. Next up for each team will be holiday tournament action.

The girls will be at the Schwan Super Rink in Blaine to play in the Blue Division of the Schwan Cup with action scheduled for Dec. 28-30.The girls open play at 4:30 p.m. Dec. 28 versus the Hutchinson Tigers, who were ranked No. 11 in class A in the last poll. Other teams in the eight team field include the No. 1 class A team in the state Breck and the No. 2 AA team Benilde/St.Margaret's. Others are Dodge County, No. 20 in AA and St.Paul United No. 12 in A. The National Sports Center has in-home webcasting and will provide live internet broadcasts of the Blue Division games at the Super Rink. You'll find it at

The boys are hosting a tournament in the Silver Bay Blue Line Club/AmericInn tournament. It is a somewhat round robin affair with the local teams versus the further away teams. Game times will be 2:30 p.m., 5 p.m., and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 28 and 29 and 12 p.m., 2:30 p.m., and 5 p.m. on Dec. 30. The Mariners will play in the late game every day. The Mariners start out with Legacy Christian Academy, then play Bagley/Fosston, and finish up with Robbinsdale Cooper. The other local teams are Ely and Moose Lake. Moose Lake is the defending champion.

Eleven boys and four girls high school hockey teams remain unbeaten as of Dec. 20. The girls' teams are Irondale, Roseville, Breck, and Orono. For the boys it's Breck, Brainerd, Chanhassen, Duluth East, Hermantown, Maple Grove, Minnetonka, Moorhead, River Lakes, St.Louis Park, and Stillwater.

Katie Smedstad took second place at the Virginia Invitational alpine meet held at Giant's Ridge. Both the Cook County boys and girls took first place in the meet.

The World U20 Junior tournament begins Monday at Calgary and Edmonton, Alberta. Derek Forbot, Nick Bjugstad, Josh Archibald and Kyle Rau are the Minnesotans on the USA roster. The USA and Canada are the favorites and Russia is the defending champion. The USA starts out in pool play with Canada, Finland, Denmark, and the Czech Republic. The other pool has Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, Slovakia, and Latvia. The tournament concludes with the gold medal game Jan. 5.