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Roseville set for boys hockey section playoffs
The Roseville Area High School boys hockey team spent the first half of the season flirting with a .500 record. That changed midway through January, however, as the Raiders went on a bit of a tear.
Roseville has lost just once in its last nine games. That surge helped the Raiders land in the top half of the seeds for the upcoming Section 4AA playoffs.
Roseville (14-7-3) earned the fourth seed and plays fifth-seeded Mounds View (9-14-2) in the last quarterfinal of the day on Saturday at Aldrich Arena.
The Raiders entered 2014 with a 6-3-2 record but lost three of their first four games in January to drop to 7-6-2. Following a 2-1 loss to Stillwater, Roseville shut out Woodbury 3-0 to begin a late-season charge. The only blemish during that stretch was a loss to White Bear Lake.
Roseville closed out its Suburban East Conference schedule last Thursday with a 2-1, overtime victory over East Ridge. Andrew Colvard bagged the game-winner 45 seconds into the extra session.
Colvard leads the team in scoring with 41 points. His 18 goals leave him tied for second on the team and his 23 assists are the most on the roster.
Ryan Larson leads the Raiders in goals with 20 and is second in points with 37. Matt Irwin is tied with Colvard for second in goals and is third on the team in total points with 27.
Junior netminder Quinn Huff is 9-2-3 with a 2.23 goals-against average and a save percentage of .928.
When Roseville takes on Mounds View on Saturday, the Raiders will be looking for their third victory over the Mustangs this season. Roseville beat Mounds View 3-2 on Dec. 12 at Roseville Arena and 6-3 on Dec. 26 in the first round of the Schwan Cup holiday tournament at the Super Rink in Blaine.
Mounds View had an extremely slow start to the season, put together a run in the second half of January and ran into another rough patch once the calendar changed to February. Through Jan. 4, the Mustangs had won just two games but they found a groove in mid-January. An overtime win against Stillwater on Jan. 9 started Mounds View on a stretch where it won six of seven to get within two games of .500. February was none too kind, however, as Mounds View closed out the regular season by going 1-4-2 over its final seven games.
The Roseville/Mounds View winner advances to the semifinals on Feb. 25 at the State Fair Coliseum and will most likely face top-seeded Hill-Murray. The Pioneers (22-3) take on eighth-seeded Irondale (3-19-2) in the quarterfinals Saturday at 11 a.m. at Aldrich.
The other two quarterfinals feature second-seeded White Bear Lake (18-6-1) taking on seventh-seeded North St. Paul (13-12) at 1 p.m. and third-seeded Stillwater (13-10-2) against sixth-seeded Tartan (15-9) at 5 p.m.
Brian Meyers can be reached at email@example.com.