The Eagan Wildcats have been ranked tops in the state all year in the biggest schools class and received the top seed in the state tournament, which begins Thursday at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.

The defending state champs' only loss this season was to No. 2 seed Champlin Park in a tournament on the regular season final weekend in three sets. The Wildcats are 28-1 and will play against Grand Rapids in their opener at 9AM.

The Thunderhawks are 19-8 and started the season with a 3-4 record. Their losses have been to Cannon Falls, Tartan, Farmington, Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa in tournament competition and Princeton in a regular-season match and tournament action. Grand Rapids also lost to Bemidji and finished the regular season with a loss to Stillwater Area.

At the same time (9AM), No. 4 seed Lakeville South and No. 5 seed Prior Lake collide, with the South Suburban sporting three teams, all in the same bracket. The Cougars were ranked No. 3 in the final coaches poll and Prior Lake was rated No. 5.

Lakeville South has a record of 28-3 and the Lakers are 24-6. Prior Lake defeated Lakeville South during their regular-season match in four sets and lost to them in a tournament in two sets. Prior Lake also defeated Lakeville South in another tournament. Lakeville South's other loss came in five sets to Eagan and the Lakers' other losses were against Bloomington Jefferson, Champlin Park, Tracy-Milroy-Balaton and Eagan twice.

No 2 seed and second rated Champlin Park is 29-2. The Rebels' only losses have been in tournament action against Lakeville North and Hopkins. They enter the tournament on an 11-match win streak and will face Roseville Area in their first match at 11 AM.

The Roseville Area Raiders sport a 18-11 mark and defeated Stillwater Area in a five-set thriller for their section championship. The Raiders started the season 1-4 with losses to Prior Lake, Osseo, Rosemount and Hopkins after their season opening win over Totino-Grace. The other seven losses came against Totino-Grace, Lakeville South, Cretin-Derham-Hall, Eagan, Moorhead, Delano and Wayzata in tournament competition.

No. 3 seed Hopkins is 29-1, with their only loss in a Apple Valley Tournament against Roseville Area. The Royals play the Moorhead Spuds in the other 11AM game at the X.

Moorhead is 27-6 and lost just once outside of a tournament in a four-set affair against North St. Paul. They also lost to North St. Paul in a tournament, as well as Lakeville South, Prior Lake, East Ridge and Osseo.

Volleyball -photo by Gordy Kosfeld
Volleyball -photo by Gordy Kosfeld

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