For maybe a minute this season, it was appropriate to wonder what happened to Eagan.
The Wildcats, accustomed to taking their usual place in the big-school state championship game for most of the past decade, lost two sets to Northfield in its Aug. 31 opener and then lost a five-set match to Bloomington Jefferson on Sept. 2. On Sept. 11, Eagan lost again, 2-1 to Shakopee in the Sabers' tournament.
But Eagan (15-3, 6-0) has won 10 of its last 11 games, losing only to No. 1-4A Wayzata 2-1 at the Eagle Invitational in Apple Valley on Sept. 25.
Shakopee, meanwhile, which vaulted into the No. 2 spot in the 4A poll after its victory over Eagan, has struggled, losing three of seven games and falling to fourth in the poll. The Sabers (18-3, 8-0) conclude their regular season on Tuesday at Eagan in a match that most likely will decide the conference champion.
Eagan closes conference play on Oct. 18 at Apple Valley and ends its regular season on Oct. 21 against Eden Prairie.
This game, of course, will include a floor full of some of the best players in Minnesota. Middle blocker Maddie Lipetzky and right side/setter Kate Cordes lead the Sabers while Sienna Ifill and Kendal Kemp lead the Wildcats.