TCO earns top seed in league playoffs

by Legacy Hockey

Regular season champion Twin Cities Orthopedics (13-4-3) earned the top seed in the Upper Midwest High School Elite League playoffs and opens with a 5:30 p.m. quarterfinal game against No. 8 seed The Base (5-13-2) on Friday at New Hope Ice Arena. 

All four quarterfinal games are set for Friday with No. 3 seed Sanford Power (10-9-1) playing No. 6 seed Sit Mutual Funds (8-11-1) at 6 p.m., No. 4 seed MAP South (9-9-2) playing No. 5 seed MSP Magazine (7-9-4) at 8 p.m. and No. 2 seed TDS Transportation (11-6-3) playing No. 7 seed Team Wisconsin (5-12-2) at 8:30 p.m. 

All playoff games are held at New Hope Ice Arena’s North and South rinks and streamed by MNHockey.TV. The semifinals and consolation semifinals are set for Saturday and all four championship round games will be held Sunday. The championship game is set for noon on Sunday on the North rink. 

Twin Cities Orthopedics led the league with 124 goals and a plus-41 goal differential. Four of the league’s top seven scorers play for TCO. TDS Transportation went 5-2-1 to close the regular season, including a 4-2 win over Shattuck-St. Mary’s on Oct. 2. 

Defending playoff champion Sanford Power led the league by allowing just 62 goals, 13 fewer than the next best defensive team in TDS Transportation. Sanford Power won last season’s playoff championship by beating MAP South 5-4 in overtime on a shorthanded goal by Kittson Central’s Tyler Hennen. 

The league playoff champion will receive The Founder’s Cup in recognition of John Russo, who was instrumental in getting the league up and running in 2002. Russo passed away in April.

Past Champions

2002SW/Acceleration MNNE/Premier Banks2-0
2003North/N. Nat. BankNE/Premier Banks5-2
2004NW/Anderson FinancialGreat Plains4-3 OT
2005SE/St. Paul Eye ClinicGreat Plains3-2 OT
2006Shattuck-St. Mary’sNW/Anderson Financial5-1
2007KC Russell StoverTeam Wisconsin5-4
2008SW/Starkey LabsNorthwest3-1
2009SoutheastSW/Starkey Labs6-5
2010Great PlainsNortheast7-5 ENG
2012North/Muscle MilkSE/TCF Bank4-3
2013SW/Starkey LabsTeam Wisconsin7-2
2014NE/MSP MagazineSE/TCF Bank4-3 2OT
2015North/Muscle MilkSE/TCF Bank9-3
2016GP/Sanford HealthSW/Starkey Labs6-2
2017SW/SIT MutualSE/MAP Hockey8-7 OT
2018SE/MAP HockeySW/SIT Mutual5-3
2019Sanford PowerTeam Wisconsin3-2 OT
2020Velocity HockeyMSP Magazine3-1 ENG
2021MSP MagazineTeam Wisconsin3-2
2022Sanford PowerMAP South5-4 OT