Pursuit of the 2014 Minnesota State High School League Challenge Cup is in full swing, and at the conclusion of the fall season the leaders are Dawson-Boyd, Hill-Murray and Edina in their respective classes.
Created in 2003, the Challenge Cup is a statewide, year-long competition among Minnesota high schools. Schools earn points throughout the year for their success in post-season fine arts and athletic tournaments. The school earning the most points at the end of the year in each classification—Class A, Class AA, and Class AAA—receives the traveling Challenge Cup. The award is sponsored by Wells Fargo, the Minnesota State High School League’s premier corporate partner.
Dawson-Boyd, winner of a 2012 Challenge Cup, is leading the Class A small school competition with 75 points. The Blackjacks participated in two state tournaments this past fall finishing second in both football and girls’ cross country running.
Close behind Dawson-Boyd in the Class A competition are Minneota (68.33 points), Grand Meadow (60 points), Mahnomen (60 points) and Fillmore Central, Harmony (50 points).
In Class AA, Hill-Murray of Maplewood leads with 129 points. The Pioneers finished second in the boys’ soccer and girls’ volleyball state tournaments. They also had swimmers—two relay teams and two individuals—who placed in the top eight at the state girls’ swimming and diving meet.
Rounding out the top five in Class AA are Rochester Lourdes (116.5 points), Perham (116 points), Visitation of Mendota Heights (101 points) and Totino-Grace of Fridley (100 points).
Edina is at the top of the list of Class AAA schools with 245 Challenge Cup points. The Hornets competed in five fall state tournaments and won their 17th consecutive team championship in girls’ tennis. Members of the tennis team also won the singles event and placed fourth in the doubles competition. Edina also had individual champions in girls’ swimming and the boys’ cross country team finished second. Other points came from the boys’ soccer team (third place) and the adapted soccer PI team (fourth place).
The remaining top five Class AAA schools are five-time Challenge Cup winner Eden Prairie (194 points), Wayzata, the current Cup holder (186 points), Minnetonka (179 points) and Chanhassen (134.5 points).
“The Challenge Cup is an excellent way to measure the overall efforts of schools involved in League-sponsored fine arts and athletic programs,” said Dave Kvamme, lead region president for Wells Fargo’s Minnesota Great Lakes Region. “The competition is always close each year and we expect it to go down to the wire again this year.”
The Challenge Cup standings will change again in early spring after the winter tournaments are completed. The leader board, which is posted on the League’s website, will be updated in late April. The League and Wells Fargo will crown the 11th set of Challenge Cup champions in late June following the spring tournaments.
For a complete listing of the Challenge Cup standings thus far, visit the League website at MSHSL.org and click the Recognition tab.