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Legendary Hermantown High coaches Andy Fenske (boys basketball) and Patrick Andrews (boys hockey) on their respective teams:


Fenske – "Coming off of a great performance to clinch a share of the conference title (an eye-popping 93-66 victory at Superior last Thursday), we like the momentum we have going in our favor. We've scheduled some playoff type of games, and thankfully most of them are on the road, where we feel we can best be prepared for March. The boys are playing some great basketball right now, and we're almost playing our best style yet. Superior was the most complete game we had, specifically on the defensive end of things. This week we wrap up the regular season with two more road playoff-type atmosphere games. Tonight we head down to Chisago Lakes to determine who will hold the top seed come playoff time next week. With the way we've been playing, we'll still need to focus on our execution. They have one of the top players in the section followed up with a 3-point shooter that if he gets hot, we'll be in for a long night. We need to key in on our game plan and we'll be just fine. We've talked as a team that when we come across teams like this, build like us, we need to understand that we aren't going to stop them, we just need to slow them down. We wrap up the 23-24 regular season campaign with a trip out East to face the Greyhounds. This is the type of match-up where the gym will be packed on a Friday night, and both teams are hoping to keep momentum heading into section play next week. We know that going against East, no matter the record or the previous outcome, it's going to be a slugfest for 36 minutes. As I said, we need to be playing these playoff-type games to prepare us as much as possible for the road ahead. We're hoping to continue to make a deep run come March time."

Andrews, whose powerhouse team defeated traditional rival Proctor 6-3 in a Section 7A semifinal Saturday night and plays Hibbing-Chisholm Wednesday night in the final with a trip to the Class A tournament on the line -- "Saturday was a fun day at Amsoil Arena, and semifinal Saturday never seems to disappoint. I was proud of the boys and the effort they put in to secure a victory against a talented, feisty and hard-working Proctor team. Falling behind early is never the goal but I thought it sparked us and got the boys to play more freely, I thought we were a bit tentative out of the gate, nerves and anxiety slowing our pace a bit. However, after they scored our bench came to life and it was the penalty kill that got us going. The boys on the bench call our penalty kill the 'power kill' as it has been a sense of pride among the boys this year to kill penalties and build momentum off it. Once again we did just that with a huge individual effort by River Freeman scoring short-handed which got us going. We took another penalty at the end of the second and once again the kill gave us momentum then the 'senior' line of Kaup, Jr, and Gundy got us the lead off a beautiful play by Nelly finding Josh down low who hit Gundy out front. Gundy then showed the patience and touch of a senior leader when he went forehand-backhand, shelf. Ford Skytta then made a great individual effort of a N-Z turnover to make it 3-1 going into the 3rd. Henry Peterson, Skytta, and Freeman off another amazing individual effort, each scored goals in a wild third period. I was proud of the way our guys answered the bell. Each time Proctor got within two, the very next shift we scored to keep the three-goal lead. Hibbing is a young, talented team that is well coached with a proud tradition. I expect a great game. We have a long rivalry with Hibbing and we have played some great Section 7A finals over the years. Wednesday is going to be a riot."

Hawks Sports This Week


Boys Basketball – at Chisago Lakes, 7 p.m. Game Notes: The defending Section 7AAA champion Hawks (18-6) are sizzling with confidence after posting their seventh consecutive victory last Thursday, an impressive 93-66 win at Superior. Hermantown will finish regular season play Friday at Duluth East. Senior forward Abe Soumis, the Hawks’ career points, rebounding and assists leader, continues to lead his club. Fellow seniors Peyton Menzel and Nathan Hill are strong complimentary scorers and defenders. Hermantown has won 14 of its last 15, suffering its only loss Jan. 23 at Duluth Denfeld, 88-84.


Boys Hockey – vs. Hibbing-Chisholm, Section 7A championship, 7 p.m. Amsoil Arena. Game Notes: The defending 7A champion Hawks (17-8-2), ranked second in Minnesota Class 1A, blitzed the young Bluejackets (19-8-0) 8-1 on Jan. 16 at Hermantown Arena. Hermantown defeated Proctor 6-3 in a 7A semifinal Saturday afternoon at Amsoil, led by team scoring leader River Freeman and Bradford Skytta, who had two goals each. Senior defenseman Drew Nelson added three assists for the Hawks. Henry Peterson, an elite junior defenseman and St. Thomas recruit, and Evan Gunderson also had goals for Hermantown. Senior goaltender Dane Callaway stopped 29 of 32 shots.


Robotics – at Northern Lights Regional at Duluth Entertainment Convention Center, all day.

Boys Basketball – at Duluth East, 7 p.m. Game Notes: The Hawks blitzed the Greyhounds (8-16) 93-75 in Hermantown on Jan. 9.