NHL Expansion Draft

The NHL Expansion Draft is coming up soon, at the NHL Awards on Wednesday, June 21st. Las Vegas will host the new NHL team at T-Mobile Arena. The team called the Vegas Golden Knights are the new NHL Expansion team and each time there is a new Expansion team, they are allowed to draft one player from each of the 30 other teams. Each team can protect either 7 forwards, 3 defenseman and 1 goalie or 8 skaters and 1 goalie. All 1st and 2nd year players, and unsigned drafted players are exempt from being drafted. The Vegas Golden Knights will also be receiving the 6th pick in the 2017 NHL Draft.

Each team will likely lose an important asset because the Golden Knights will probably only take players under age 31 for safety, as those players are young and should be able to play longer than the veterans. Some of the top players likely to be drafted are Ducks’ RW Jakob Silfverberg, Wild’s D Marco Scandella, Predator’s C Colton Sissons, Penguin’s G Marc-Andre Fluery, and Maple Leafs’ C Leo Komarov. All of these players are either just finding their game or still have some game left in them. Colton Sissons is likely to be protected after having an unbelievable postseason with Nashville. The Vegas Golden Knights have already signed three non-NHLers: Reid Duke, Vadim Shipcahynov, and Tomas Hyka.

The Vegas Golden Knights are likely to not be a playoff team for a few years, but the Wild are well known for making the Western Conference Finals in just their 3rd season of play back in 2003, as an Expansion team. The Golden Knights have been fairly criticized as more of a 100% money, 0% hockey, reasoning as to why Las Vegas is getting a hockey team. I believe it was not a great move by the NHL for the fans morale. A popular and devoted city like Seattle is a town most fans believe deserves a hockey team. Especially after their basketball team left not too long ago. For now, all the fans can do is wait and see how this Expansion plays out.

UEFA Champions League preview

The UEFA Champions League final is set for Saturday, June 3rd, at 1:45pm CT. The two finalists consist of the La Liga champions Real Madrid and Juventus.

Real Madrid finished 2nd in Group F with a 3-3-0 record (W-D-L). They defeated Napoli, Bayern Munich, and Atletico Madrid to advance to the finals. Cristiano Ronaldo was 2nd with 10 goals, and 2nd with 6 assists in the whole tournament.

Juventus finished 1st in Group H with a 4-2-0 record. They defeated Porto, FC Barcelona, and Monaco to reach the finals. They have allowed just 1 goal in their past 7 games, and just 3 goals the whole entire tournament.

Real Madrid this year have already become champs in other areas. They won their league championship on Sunday, May 21st, with a 2-0 win over Malaga, which clinched the title. Real Madrid had a great season totaling 93 points. Ronaldo scored 25 goals and helped lead his team to their first league championship in 5 years. Alvaro Morata helped this year as well, with 15 goals, proving to be a future talent. Toni Kroos also played well, with 12 assists, the 2nd most in the league.

Juventus had yet another successful season in the Italian Series A league. They won the championship for the 3rd straight year and their 12th total championship. Gonzalo Higuain had an outstanding season with 24 goals, although much less than his career high of 36 goals last year; it was still a great showing for Higuain. He’s scored at least 17 goals since 2013-14, and has proved to be a top striker in the world. Miralem Pjanic was tied for 12th in the league, with 8 assists, and was a great help this year.

Juventus and Real Madrid should hopefully put on a show at the National Stadium of Wales in the Capital of Wales, Cardiff. The game can be watched on ESPN and Fox Sports.

I predict Real Madrid will come out victorious, 2-1.

Sports schedule for: May 29- June 3

For  a full calendar of events please refer to: http://www.sports.spps.org

Spring Sports: Baseball, Softball, Boys Golf, Girls  Golf, Adapted Bowling, Adapted Softball, Boys Tennis, Badminton, Track & Field

Activities the Week of May 

Monday May 29:

Memorial Day

Tuesday May 30:

Co- Ed Track & Field @ East Ridge TBD

Wednesday May 31:

Thursday June 1:

Co- Ed Track & Field @ East Ridge TBD

Friday June 2:

Girls Varsity Golf Sectionals @ Bunker Hills GC 7:30am

Boys Varsity Golf Sectionals @ Bunker Hills GC 7:30am

Saturday June 3:

Go Scots!

Badminton season

This year’s Highland badminton team had a great season. It was a very fun and wonderful season. My friend and I were able to join the badminton team this year. The coaches for this year’s season were: Mrs. Kramer and Mr. Chapman. We decided to interview one of our coaches, Mrs. Kramer, about how she thought season went.

Mrs. Kramer thought this year’s badminton season was a great season. We had a great and awesome team that showed a lot of commitment and potential. The varsity team were very competitive this year, having 3 seniors with a lot of varsity experience, and who also brought a lot of leadership. The varsity doubles team was very young, and worked very hard to get better and where they wanted to be at.

photo courtesy of Quincy Yangh

Coach Karmer continued to talk about the junior varsity team, which had their struggles with the conference tournament at Como High School, but played very well. We had a good team with the junior varsity; it was very fun to coach them. Even though they had struggled in the conference, they continued to come to practice and practiced very well. We had lost to many schools, but also won against many schools with close scores.

We then asked Mrs. Kramer what she thinks we did well and was proud of this year, and also what she hopes to see for next year. Mrs. Kramer said the best part of this year was that we all got along very well. The girls showed a lot of commitment even with busy schedules, and they made badminton their first priority.

Mrs. Kramer said she was most proud of how well the team got along with each other and had fun while learning a lot and teaching each other different skills and strategies. This was very special to them as coaches, and they were proud of what the girls brought to the team this year.

Something Mrs. Kramer hopes for the next year is that the girls will continue to play badminton even when the season is over. She would like to see them get better and improve more. Mrs. Kramer said she sees a bright future for the girls and what they’ll bring to the team the next year.

Highland softball is the conference champions

On Monday, May 8th, Highland Park varsity softball played in the conference championship game against Como High School to become the 2017 conference champs. Como High School has had a very good season, going 12-3 overall and 7-1 in conference. Como’s great season primarily came from senior pitcher, Kathryn Proper, who had 12 strikeouts against Highland that night.

Highland has had a great season going 10-5 overall and 7-1 in conference. Highland has a well balanced team with lots of fresh, and new talent. For Highland, we have returning pitcher, Jenna Cook (11), shortstop, Chloe Smith (10), third baseman, Bella Ciccarelli (10), and the captains, center fielder, Majeur Tucker (10), and catcher, Hanna Zavoral (12). The rest of the team is filled with excellent incoming freshman that are flexible and can play all positions, as well as many first year juniors that have made a great addition to Highland’s team.

During the Como vs. Highland season series, earlier in the season Como beat Highland 1-0, with the one run coming late in the game. But the second time around, in the more important game, Highland pulled through and took the win, 4-3.

The night was very exciting for both teams, as Como started the night off with hot bats but quickly cooled down as Highland began rallying. Cook had a double in the fourth inning to hit Molly Crandall (11) in making it 1-1.

Then in the 6th, Crandall had an inside the park homerun, bringing herself and Zavoral home, putting Highland up 3-2.

At the top of 7th Highland allowed Como to score 1, making it 3-3. Bottom of 7th Highland had two outs with a runner on second, and Cook up to bat. Cook ended the game with what should have been a sac infield fly, but due to miscommunication on Como’s side, the shortstop and 2nd basemen collided, dropping the ball, allowing Zavoral to score.

The game ended with Highland up 4-3.   

This will be Highland’s 3rd consecutive year winning conference champs. Coming up,  Highland plays Minneapolis South for the Twin Cities Meet on Friday, May 19th, at the U of M field. The Twin Cities Meet is where the two conference champs of Minneapolis and St. Paul play each other. After the Twin Cities Meet, Highland will play in sections, which is still undecided as to who, and when, they will play.

Stanley Cup playoffs round 3 preview

The second round of the NHL playoffs wrapped up last Wednesday. Two game 7s occurred, while the other two series ended in six games.

The Nashville Predators took down the St. Louis Blues in 6 games. The Predators look to be the real deal this year as they swept the Blackhawks in the first round then went on to defeat the Blues in the second round. Their goaltender, Pekka Rinne, has been outstanding.

The other Western Conference team to advance were the Anaheim Ducks. The Ducks defeated the Oilers in 7 games. Their captain, Ryan Getzlaf, has been very dominate for the Ducks, and is playing like a true leader. He’s 3rd in the league with 15 playoff points.

The Ducks and Predators will start their series on Friday, May 12th at 8pm CT. My prediction is that the Predators will win this series in 6 games.

Now on to the East, where the surprising Ottawa Senators are heading to the Eastern Conference final. They haven’t made the conference final since 2007. The Senators defeated the New York Rangers in 6 games; they have been led by captain Erik Karlsson. He’s playing through many injuries, but continues to play excellent.

They will get ready to face the defending champions, the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Penguins defeated the Washington Capitals for a second straight year, in the second round. This is a recurring thing for the Capitals as they haven’t passed the second round since 1998. Even with the addition of Kevin Shattenkirk this season, they couldn’t break their streak. Many Penguins players played great including Evgeni Malkin who leads the league with 18 playoff points, and 13 assists, and Jake Guentzel who leads with 9 goals.

The Penguins and Senators will begin their series Saturday, May 13th at 6pm CT. My prediction is that the Penguins will win this series in 7 games.

Sports schedule for: May 15-20

For  a full calendar of events please refer to: http://www.sports.spps.org

Fall Sports: Co-ed Cross-country,Adapted Soccer, Football,Girls Soccer, Boys Soccer, Volleyball, Girls Tennis, Girls Swimming

Activities the Week of May 15-20

Monday May 15:

Co-Ed JV Track & Field Conference Meet @ HP 4:15pm

Girls Varsity Golf @ HP Nine- Hole 2:45pm

Boys JV Golf @ Thompson Oaks 2:45pm

Boys Lacrosse @ Central HS 6pm

Varsity Baseball @ Legacy Christian Academy  4:30pm (Bus 2:45/6:45pm)

Badminton Individual State Meet  vs. Burnsville @ HP 4pm

Tuesday May 16:

Varsity Badminton Individual State Meet  @ Burnsville 4pm

Varsity Baseball @ St. Cloud Municipal Athletic Complex 4pm  ( Bus 2/6pm)

Varsity Boys Tennis @ Mpls. Southwest 3:15pm  (Bus 2:30/5:15pm)  JV @ HP 3:15pm

Girls JV Golf @ Cedarholm 2:45pm

Boys Varsity Golf @ Thompson Oaks GC 2:45pm

Co-Ed Track & Field @ Irondale HS 3:45  (Bus 2:10/7pm)

Wednesday May 17:

Girls Varsity Golf @ Mendota Par 3 GC  2:45pm

Boys JV Golf @ Thompson Oaks GC 2:45pm

Varsity Baseball vs. Johnson @ HP 4:30pm   JV vs. Coon Rapids @ HP 4:30pm

Boys Lacrosse @ McMurray Fields 5pm

Girls Lacrosse @ Columbia Hgts. 5:30pm

Badminton Team State Meet @ Burnsville 4-8pm

Thursday May 18:

Girls Varsity Golf  Nine-Hole Tournament @ Cedarholm GC 1pm  JV Girls Golf @ Cedarholm 2:45pm

Badminton Team State Tournament @ Eden Prairie 8-3pm

Friday May 19:

Girls Lacrosse @ Academy of  Holy Angels 5pm

Saturday May 20:

Varsity & JV Baseball @ Henry Sibley 11am ( Bus 9:30/1pm)

Girls Lacrosse @ Duluth East HS 11am

Sports schedule for: May 8-13

For  a full calendar of events please refer to: http://www.sports.spps.org

Activities the Week of May 8-13

Monday May 8:

Girls Varsity Golf @ Phalen GC 2:45pm

Boys Varsity Tennis vs. Central @ HP 3:15pm  JV @ Central HS 3:15pm (Bus 2:30/5pm)

JV Boy Golf @ Thompson Oaks GC 2:45pm

Varsity Softball Playoffs @ Dunning Field 4pm (Bus 2:40/5:30pm)    C-Squad @ HP 4PM

Boys Lacrosse @ Roseville Area HS 6pm

Tuesday May 9:

Varsity Boys Tennis vs. Humboldt  @ HP 3:15pm JV @ Humboldt  3:15pm (Bus 2:30/5:15pm)

Boys Varsity Golf vs. Como @ Highland 2pm

Girls JV Golf @ Cedarholm 2:45pm

Co-Ed Track & Field @ St. Croix Lutheran 3pm (Bus 1:30/6pm)

Girls Lacrosse @ Central HS 4:30pm

Wednesday May 10:

Girls Varsity Golf  @ Como Park 2:45pm

Boys JV Golf @ Thompson Oaks GC 2:45

Varsity & JV Badminton Tournament @ HP 3:15pm  JV  Tournament @ Como (Bus 2:305:15pm)

Varsity Baseball @ Washington Tech. Magnet @ Arlington /Arkwright 4:30pm( Bus 3/6:30pm)  JV @ HP 4:30pm

Varsity & C-Squad Softball vs. Mpls. South @ HP 4:30pm

Thursday May 11:

Girls JV Golf @ Cedarholm 2:45pm

Boys Varsity Golf vs. Central @ Highland National GC 2:45pm

Varsity Badminton Tournament @ HP 3:15pm JV Tournament @ Como Park HS 3:15pm (Bus 2:30/5:15pm)

Varsity Boys Tennis vs. STA @ Visitation HS 4pm (Bus 3:15/6pm)

Co-Ed Track & Field @ HP 4:15pm

JV Baseball vs. Mpls. Southwest @ HP 4:30pm

Girls Lacrosse @ Mpls. Washburn 6pm

Friday May 12:

Varsity Softball @ TBD 4pm

JV Baseball vs. Mpls. Washburn @ Pearl Park 4pm  (Bus 3/6:30pm) or King Park 42nd & Nicollet

Boys Lacrosse @ Hill Murray 7pm

Saturday May 13:

JV Baseball vs. Central @ HP 12pm

Varsity & C-Squad Softball  vs. Mpls. Washburn @ Bryn Mawr Park 12pm & vs. DeLaSalle @ 2pm Bryn Mawr Park ( Bus 10:15/4pm)

The Timberwolves new logo

The Timberwolves, Minnesota’s professional basketball team, unveiled their new logo for the 2017-2018 season. This change came on April 11, 2017, during halftime of their final home game of the season against Oklahoma City.

The logo change is to stand for the new era that is coming; the Timberwolves franchise is trying to move in a new direction. “I can’t think of a better way to celebrate this new era of Timberwolves basketball than with the unveiling of our new logo, in front of our dedicated fans, on Fan Appreciation Night,” said Timberwolves CEO Ethan Casson. The CEO later went on to say how the new logo is the way to a new exciting path.

The logo is only the first surrounding their new face. With new leaders on and off of the court, the Timberwolves are planning on revealing new uniforms this summer along with a remodel of the Target Center. The remodel is going to add new seats, more space, and a new court design.

The logo was in the process of being created for 12 months. It was designed by the Timberwolves ownership, team executives, the NBA, and design expert Rodney Richardson of RARE Design. The new logo is a combination of past logos. It includes some of the same colors but with a new refreshed hue of the blue and green. The new colors include midnight blue, aurora green, lake blue, moonlight grey, and frost white. The logo also still includes a wolf, but this time it is howling. Wolves use their howl to warn others; it shows their fierce side. Wolves also use the howl to reconnect and bond as a family. The new logo is a perfect new face to the up and coming season for the Wolves.

Here is the evolution of the timberwolves logos:

1989/90-1995/96

1996/97-2007/08

2008/09-2016/17

2017/18- present

 

NHL playoffs round 2 preview

The first round of the NHL playoffs came and left with many surprises. Starting with the Eastern Conference, the New York Rangers were able to knock out the Montreal Canadiens in six games due to Montreal’s lack of scoring. The Ottawa Senators surprised many by beating the Boston Bruins in six games. Ottawa’s Bobby Ryan helped immensely with Ottawa having many injuries. Ottawa’s goalie Craig Anderson played hard for the Senators. His wife was diagnosed with cancer in February, and he’s been playing his best ever since. The Senators and Rangers will open their series in Ottawa on Thursday night, April 27th, at 6pm CT.

The reigning champs, the Pittsburgh Penguins showed no mercy against their rivals, the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Penguins defeated them in just five games with Penguins center Evgeni Malkin leading the league with 11 points in the playoffs so far. The Washington Capitals barely escaped the Toronto Maple Leafs, who drove the Capitals to six games, until Washington brought them down. Five of the six games went to overtime, which the Capitals won three of. The Capitals and Penguins will once again have a hyped up playoff series. Last year the Penguins beat the Capitals in the second round on their road to winning the cup. The teams will play game 1 in Washington D.C. on Thursday night, April 27th, at 6:30pm CT.

Now onto the Western Conference, which held many surprises. The Nashville Predators shocked the world and swept the best team in the West, the Chicago Blackhawks. No one saw this coming. Nashville has always been a dangerous team in the playoffs, but Chicago has always been the most dangerous. Goalie Pekka Rinne carried the Predators with a 0.70 GAA, 0.976 save percentage, and 2 shutouts in the four wins. He let up a total of just 3 goals, and had more points (2 assists) than any Chicago player.

The other Central Division series was the Minnesota Wild vs. the St. Louis Blues. The Wild dominated the whole series outshooting the Blues 182 to 134. The Wild couldn’t capitalize on their many chances. They only scored 8 goals, while the Blues scored 11. The goalies in this series were key. Blues’ goalie Jake Allen carried the Blues, while the Wild’s Devan Dubnyk did the best he could against a scary Blues offense. The Blues got out easily in 5 games winning both overtimes the series had. The Blues and Predators will start round 2 against each other on Wednesday, April 26th, in St. Louis at 7pm CT.

The Anaheim Ducks hosted the Calgary Flames for their series, and it was all Anaheim. The Ducks were 1 of 2 teams that swept their opponent. Anaheim won all but game 4 by one goal. In game 4 they won 3-1 to close out the series. Ryan Getzlaf led the Ducks with 3 goals and 2 assists, while Ducks’ goalie John Gibson posted a 9.26 GAA. The Ducks are heavy favorites in the West.

The Edmonton Oilers and San Jose Sharks played to face Anaheim. The Oilers were carried by superstar Connor McDavid who led the league with 100 points at just 20 years old. Leon Draisaitl was quietly good for Edmonton scoring 77 points this season, but Edmonton was led by their goalie this series Cam Talbot. He had 2 shutouts, and besides letting up 5 goals in 1 game, he played amazing for the Oilers. The Oilers and Ducks will play Wednesday, April 26th, in Anaheim, at 9:30pm CT.

Right now the most likely teams that will play in the Stanley Cup are the Pittsburgh Penguins for the East, and the Anaheim Ducks for the West.