D2 Preview: 2019 Final 4 Back for More

March 11, 2020

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor

Last year, we previewed the Division 2 Semifinal bracket by discussing the contenders’ familiarity with each other as three of four teams returned from the season before.

This year, the only change is that they probably know each other even better.

Reigning champion Hartland, runner-up Trenton and 2019 semifinalists Bloomfield Hills Brother Rice and Marquette all will be back at USA Hockey Arena again this weekend, with Hartland and Trenton actually having faced off for the past two Division 2 championships – both won by the Eagles. This time, they’ll see each other in a Semifinal on Thursday.

This weekend’s pairings are as follows:

Division 2 – Thursday
Hartland (19-6-2) vs Trenton (22-6-1), 5 p.m.
Bloomfield Hills Brother Rice (21-6-2) vs. Marquette (24-4), 7:30 p.m. 

FINALS – Saturday
Division 2 - 11 a.m. 

All Semifinals and Finals will be viewable live per subscription basis on MHSAA.tv, with live audio available on MHSAANetwork.com. Click for a full schedule of this weekend's games plus full results as they come in.

Record/rank: 21-6-2, No. 2
Championship history: Five MHSAA titles (most recent 2017), two runner-up finishes.
Coach: Kenny Chaput, fourth season (76-30-8) 
League finish: First in Michigan Interscholastic Hockey League North.
Best wins: 9-1 over No. 7 Lake Orion in Regional Final, 6-1 over No. 10 Plymouth, 3-0 over No. 3 Trenton, 4-2 over No. 4 Hartland, 4-2 over Division 1 No. 3 Brighton, 5-2 and 2-1 over Division 1 No. 1 Detroit Catholic Central, 3-1 and 7-3 over Division 1 No. 6 Orchard Lake St. Mary’s.
Players to watch: Nick Marone, sr. F (32 goals, 16 assists); DJ Dixon, sr. F (18 goals, 32 assists); Ryan Murphy, sr. F (22 goals, 36 assists); Nick Dippre, sr. D (6 goals, 16 assists).
Outlook: This will be Brother Rice’s fourth-straight Semifinals, and the Warriors are looking to break through for their first championship game appearance since winning the 2017 title. Talented veterans are showing the way, including Marone, a first-team all-stater last season, and Dixon after making the all-state second team in 2019. They are only two of a variety of scoring threats, including senior Dylan McNulty (10 goals, 10 assists) and junior Max Brown (10, 17) among 12 players total with 15 or more points. If Rice can get past Marquette in the Semifinal, it beat both of the teams it could see in the championship game during the regular season.

Record/rank: 19-6-2, No. 4
Championship history: Division 2 champion 2018 and 2019, runner-up 2013 and 2014. 
Coach: Rick Gadwa, ninth season (188-59-12) 
League finish: Second in Kensington Lakes Activities Association West.
Best wins: 6-3 over No. 10 Plymouth, 4-3 over No. 9 Canton, 4-2 over Division 1 No. 7 Howell, 5-1 over Division 1 No. 6 Orchard Lake St. Mary’s.
Players to watch: Andrew Larson, jr. F (14 goals, 8 assists); Dakota Kott, sr. D (10 goals, 17 assists), Adam Pietila, jr. F (22 goals, 17 assists); Kieran Carlile, sr. F (9 goals, 22 assists).
Outlook: The path to a possible third-straight championship has seen Hartland outscore its four postseason opponents by a combined 24-5, with a 3-2 Regional Final win over Davison the only game decided by a goal. The Eagles graduated some serious star power after last season’s title, but opened this winter with six straight wins and also have defeated four of the top six ranked teams in Division 3. Kott earned an all-state honorable mention last season.  

Record/rank: 24-4, No. 5
Championship history: Five MHSAA titles (most recent 2008), two runner-up finishes. 
Coach: Doug Garrow, seventh season (125-56-12) 
League finish: Third in Great Lakes Hockey Conference.
Best wins: 5-2 over No. 6 Traverse City Central in Quarterfinal, 7-1 over No. 7 Lake Orion, 4-2 over No. 9 Canton, 4-0 over Division 3 No. 1 Calumet.
Players to watch: Gaetanno Cammarata, sr. F (17 goals, 19 assists); Cooper Anderson, sr. F (13 goals, 16 assists); Dylan Baldwin, jr. F (13 goals, 14 assists); Jakob Peterson, sr. D (12 goals, 25 assists).
Outlook: Marquette is enjoying its winningest season under Garrow, which has included its third Regional title under his leadership and now second-straight trip to the Semifinals. The Redmen have won 14 of their last 15 games, their lone defeat during that time to Hancock before coming back to then finish the regular season with a 3-1 win over Division 3 No. 6 Houghton. Cammarata earned all-state honorable mention last season and is the leading scorer of seven with double-digit goals. In addition to those mentioned above, junior Ansel Frost has 10 goals (and 19 assists), junior Evan Kroll has scored 13 and sophomore Cole Ranta has 11. Goaltenders Liam Beerman, a freshman, and junior Brennan Hakkola have split time nearly evenly in net and posted a combined 1.44 goals-against average.

Record/rank: 22-6-1, No. 3
Championship history: Fourteen MHSAA titles (most recent 2014), eight runner-up finishes. 
Coach: Chad Clements, sixth season (113-54-7) 
League finishes: Third in MIHL South, first in Downriver League.
Best wins: 5-1 over No. 1 Livonia Stevenson in Quarterfinal, 4-2 over Division 1 No. 6 Orchard Lake St. Mary’s, 3-2 and 2-0 over Division 3 No. 2 Grosse Pointe South.
Players to watch: Joey Cormier, sr. G (1.66 goals-against average, .941 save %); Nick Millhorn, sr. F (18 goals, 13 assists); Hunter Allen, jr. F (16 goals, 25 assists); Ethan Holt, sr. F (20 goals, 19 assists).
Outlook: After back-to-back runner-up finishes, Trenton is aiming to send 11 seniors out with the program’s first championship since 2014. The Trojans defeated top-ranked Stevenson to get back to USA Hockey Arena, and they own a 3-3 tie against Hartland from early this season. Trenton also has one of the state’s finest in net, as Cormier was an all-state second-teamer as a sophomore and made the first team last season. Holt joined him last year, making the first team at forward.

PHOTO: Marquette's Joseph Luke (14) deflects a shot past the Escanaba goalie during a December win. (Photo by Cara Kamps.)

Traverse Bay Reps Teammates Unite to Take on Great Lakes Paddle Board Pursuit

By Tom Spencer
Special for MHSAA.com

August 3, 2023

Twenty years ago, Kwin Morris and Jeff Guy were teammates on an MHSAA Quarterfinal-qualifying hockey team.

Made in Michigan is powered by Michigan Army National Guard.Guy even scored the winning goal in the Regional Final for Bay Area Reps, which topped Traverse City West 2-1.

This summer’s accomplishment, though, will go deeper in the history books.

Guy and Morris teamed up with Joe Lorenz to complete a dream that started a decade ago. They crossed all five of the Great Lakes on paddle boards while raising awareness and funds for water quality.

They put their balance, endurance and stick-handling skills together for the cause.

‘After 10 years and over one hundred grand raised for the lakes, it feels amazing,” Morris said. “I think the best part is knowing my kids will grow up knowing their old man did something cool for the environment in a unique way.”

It all started at a December social event in Traverse City. Guy, a financial adviser, and Morris, a middle school science teacher, had just gotten into paddle boarding when they began to wonder if they could cross Lake Michigan.  

Lorenz, a personal trainer, promptly gave assurances they could — and joined them — even though he had never been on a paddle board prior to the holiday gathering.

Morris, Guy and Lorenz successfully crossed Lake Michigan in 2015, pausing in the cold of the night to look at the Northern Lights.  They finished the nearly 100-kilometer journey in just under 25 hours. That accomplishment convinced them to launch Stand Up for Great Lakes, a non-profit organization to raise money and awareness for the protection of the lakes.

The trio also is supporting the Cooperative Institute for Great Lakes Research, a non-profit housed at the University of Michigan.

“It feels amazing to have finished crossing all five lakes and complete a lifelong goal,” Guy acknowledged. “The dollars and awareness we have raised is incredible, and hopefully it continues to grow.”

Lake Huron was the toughest to cross by far, the former Reps noted. The 90-mile, 29-hour paddle brought seven hours of rain and high waves.

“Plus Joe knocked me in and Jeff fell in after catching a fish,” Morris observed.

Ontario was the team’s second-hardest challenge and the shortest paddle. Huge waves from the side all day took quite a toll on the paddlers, who were accompanied by safety boats on each crossing.   

Lake Superior featured glassy water, a spectacular sunset and the paddlers pausing to conduct a ceremony over the Edmund Fitzgerald shipwreck. The northernmost Great Lake ranks as the group’s favorite.

Guy, Morris and Joe Lorenz take a photo together on the lake shore. Guy graduated from Kalkaska High School in 2003 and went on to play hockey at Hope College. He also played football, baseball and golf for the Blazers. He and his wife, Melissa, have a daughter, Emma.

Morris graduated in 2005 from Elk Rapids High School, where he also played baseball. He went on to get a teaching degree from Western Michigan University. He and his wife, Megan, have two children, Fitz and Knox. He now works for his former school district, teaching science.

The pair played for the Reps through a co-op hosted by Traverse City St. Francis that included athletes from Charlevoix, Elk Rapids, Kalkaska, Kingsley, Lake Leelanau St Mary, Mancelona and Suttons Bay. The Reps’ first coach was Michigan High School Hockey Coaches Association Hall of Fame inductee Rex Luxton. He coached through 2008.

Morris and Guy look back at their high school playing days and coach with fondness.

“We had some great teams, and I think I still have the career goal record there,” Guy recalled. “Also, our coach on the Reps Rex Luxton was highly motivational to me while playing for him and later in life.”

Morris echoed Guy.

“I loved the whole experience,” Morris said. “Playing for my high school … Friday night games … school rivalries … playing for Rex Luxton … amazing friends and teammates — almost surreal that it will have been 20 years.”

The former coaching staff of the Reps are not at all surprised Morris and Guy challenged themselves to make a difference for the Great Lakes.

The coaching staff remembers Guy as a natural scorer coming through with big goals, and Morris as a strong two-way player who scored five goals in one period in Sault Ste. Marie. The past coaches also remember all the traveling the two did for practice and games because of the geographic nature of the squad.

“I had no idea they had any interest in the water kind of stuff,” Luxton said of his former players’ feat. “When I started following their bid to raise awareness, it didn’t surprise me they would attempt something like this.

Morris accepts a medal during the 2004-05 season.“I think it illustrates how much determination they have and how much hard work they were willing to put in,” he continued. “It is just outstanding, particularly with the cold weather in the Great Lakes.”

Cody Inglis, a senior assistant director for the MHSAA, was an assistant coach for the Reps during all of Morris and Guy’s time with the co-op. He finds himself beaming with pride and happiness knowing these former players are giving back and making it a better world.

“What Jeff and Kwin have done physically and mentally to cross all of the Great Lakes on stand-up paddle boards is remarkable in itself,” Inglis pointed out. “When you add in the fact that they have put in charitable causes and the preservation of the Great Lakes as a reason for doing it – it makes it even more special.

“It’s not surprising given my recollection and remembrances of Jeff and Kwin, as they were really good hockey players and better people.”

High school hockey is where Morris and Guy’ friendship blossomed. Spending 24 or more hours together — and with Lorenz — has forged a greater lifetime bond that already had included being a part of each other’s weddings.

But they admit they had no inkling of this type of accomplishment back in high school.  

“Sports were the most important thing in my life in high school,” Guy revealed. “Working really hard to win as many games as possible was the main goal – along with getting good grades and trying to get into a good college.”

But teamwork, learned on the ice and through other high school sports, can make anything possible.

“Any sport where you have to work as a team helps push yourself out of your comfort zone,” Morris concluded. “That's where the best things in life happen.”

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PHOTOS (Top) Clockwise from top left: Jeff Guy celebrates a goal while playing for Traverse Bay Reps with Kwin Morris to his left, Guy (left) and Morris (right) take a photo after one of their paddle board trips, and Morris bringing the puck up the ice for the Reps. (Middle) Guy, Morris and Joe Lorenz take a photo together on the lake shore. (Below) Morris accepts a medal during the 2004-05 season. (Photos courtesy of Jeff Guy, Kwin and Jo Morris.)