2017-18 Section 1AAAA Preview

This is the 20th preview in my 2017-2018 season preview series.  Now we begin our look at all of the class AAAA sections going in numerical order.  So that means we start with section 1.  For a list of all the season previews and how they are generated, click here.

Section 1AAAA (8 teams)
Defending Champion: Lakeville North

Tournament Schedule:
Quarterfinals: Wednesday, March 7th
Semifinals: Saturday, March 10th at Rochester Civic Arena
Finals: Saturday, March 17th at Rochester Civic Arena

Predicted Seeding
  1. Lakeville North
  2. Rochester John Marshall
  3. Rochester Mayo
  4. Owatonna
  5. Lakeville South 
  6. New Prague
  7. Farmington
  8. Rochester Century
No new teams in the section for this 2 year cycle.  This section has plenty of depth at the top if not a potential elite team.  Lakeville North will be strong with Tyler Wahl.  You can never discount a team with Matt Hurt at JM.  But he has limited help and a brand new coach and system this year.  Rochester Mayo brings in a new coach with his twin sophomore sons Gabe and Mason Madsen.  They'll man the backcourt and both have UNI offers amongst others.  So they are going to be a major factor here, but how big of a factor is the unknown.  Owatonna and Lakeville South fight it out for the last home game again in arguably the strongest 4 vs 5 game.  Owatonna has most of their 18 win roster coming back including forward Dalton Kubista.  So I don't see that potential 4 vs 5 rematch as another 30 point blowout.  Blake Nicols takes over the program at New Prague in the tough Wright County East.  He has to replace 5 of his top 6 scorers.  But he has 2 talented juniors in Tyler Kemp and Nathan Brusseau to build around.  Farmington loses top scorer Sam Wilson but has experience coming back.  The youth movement continues at Rochester Century.

Sleeper: Rochester Mayo.  We know there's talent.  How everything comes together is what remains to be seen.

Section Winner: Lakeville North. The Panthers have been the nemesis of Rochester John Marshall for the last 5 years in this section.  Their experience and proven ability to reload will be big factors here.  But they aren't at the same level as past years.  The top 5 teams are all not that far apart so it should be a very entertaining section to watch.

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