COACHES

Head coach: Chris Miller, 1st year as head coach. Was a high school assistant the last three years and prior to that coached at the youth level for nine years.

Assistant coaches: Arlo Lehtinen — 1st year, Jeff Kotek — 1st year, Mitch Goecke — 1st year. This is the first year at the high school for all the assistant coaches, but they all have coached for many years at the youth level.

KEY PLAYERS

From last year’s team, at forward I would expect Brendan O’Keefe, Brooks Reicks and Mason Reinhardt to have an impact for us and help replace some of the scoring we lost to graduation. On the back end, we have Dylan Hunt and Ethan Hathaway coming back and in goal we have Mitch Kotek returning. Mitch has done a good job for us over the last two years.

KEEP YOUR EYE ON

That will play itself out, we graduated 12 kids off of last year’s team, so there is going to be a lot of opportunity for the returning juniors and sophomores coming in to set up and into a role on the varsity.

2020-21 SEASON RECAP

Overall Record — 9-5-0, Conference Record — 8-4-0

Last year we received the No. 7 seed in the section playoffs and lost in the first round to the No. 10 La Crescent.

2021-22 SEASON OUTLOOK

Our expectations for this team are going to be to show up at the rink everyday and put the work in needed to get better. Off the ice, we want our kids to do well in the classroom and to be role models for the youth hockey players. Our goals are to compete for the Big South Conference title and put ourselves in a good position for the section tournament.

COMPETITION

In our conference I think we can be a top four team. New Ulm is going to be good again and right now I would say the road to the Big South Conference title runs through New Ulm.

In our section, I think New Ulm, Mankato West and Mankato East are all good teams that are well coached and will all be top teams in the section. After that I think we could fall in anywhere from fourth to sixth depending on how our young kids adapt to playing high school hockey.

BY THE NUMBERS

With graduating 12 seniors off of last year’s team we lose over 60% of our goal production from last year. Off of last year’s team, we have 10 letter winners returning. Of our returning letter winners, four are seniors, five are juniors and one a sophomore.

Reach Reporter Ben Camp at 931-8566 or follow him on Twitter @SPHvalleysports. © Copyright 2021 APG Media of Southern Minnesota. All rights reserved.

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