Following the much maligned break from the rink during the spring, we have been elated to get our boys and girls back in the building over this past month. Quarantine was a challenging time for everyone in different ways. But the resilience of our athletes has the program back up to speed on the ice and in the weight room.
We feed off each other's enthusiasm and energy. Compete level and excellence are contagious in the right environments. And we are proud of all the individuals in each age group that are on the front lines leading that charge. These are the Players of the Month for June 2020.
Keaton Pehrson | College/Junior Tier | University of Michigan
Keaton is no stranger to our ice sheet and campus. Since his early days in the program as a young, skinny Lakeville North defenseman, he's always lead with passion and intensity. That formula has gotten him to the D1 collegiate level and he has continued to be a positive influence this summer. There's a lot of young, upside skaters that can take a page or two from Keaton's book - be ready to work every day, buy into the details of the instruction & teaching that you receive, and be a boss on Game Day. KP is well on his way to being regarded as an SS4L legend.
Honorable Mention: Mason Campbell, Harrison VanderMey
Ryan Berglund | 18 Selects Tier | Mahtomedi HS
Ryan joins us following an extraordinary regular season with the Zephyrs that concluded with a Class A State Championship title in Saint Paul. And it has been exciting to see the on-ice impact and character traits that our staff saw at The Tourney translate to the training season. Ryan's game is built on tenacity and consistency. There's some maturity in his game that a few of peers could learn from - making an impact in any zone and any scenario. With a motor like his, we're excited to see how far Ryan can push his game in the coming months.
Honorable Mention: Max Zupfer
Hunter Laschinger | 18s Tier | Hill-Murray
Hunter is another young man putting work in following a State High Championship. And if the Pios are going to have a shot at defending their Class AA title, it will be because of high-character individuals like Hunter. He's a strong communicator with our staff on the ice and is always responding well to different teaching points. Because of that, his game is picking up steam in terms of offensive execution and impact on both sides of the puck. With more of the same efforts, we are anticipating a big jump in Hunter's role with HMBH this upcoming season.
Honorable Mention: Connor Nelson
Jacob Margarit | 16s Tier | Academy of Holy Angels
There's a lot of excitement among the staff about an influx of young skaters and goalies that we believe will be strong performers at the varsity level very soon. And Jacob is front and center of those promising newcomers in the program. Jacob wasted no time establishing himself with our culture. He enjoys the work. He wants to get better. And he's ready to make a big step forward for his Stars next season. The arrow is pointing up for this up-and-coming blueliner.
Honorable Mention: Ryan Koering, Aidan Siegfried
Photo credit: Youth Hockey Hub
Ben Miller | 15s Tier | Hill-Murray
Veteran leadership is hard to come by at the younger age levels. So we're especially thankful to have a strong presence around any time Benny is on the ice. He does a heck of a job managing the balance between having a blast with his peers at the rink and also taking care of his business. We enjoy working with a bright, offensive mind like Ben and helping him continue to boost his impact. Everyone at this age has a ways to go, but Ben's career looks like it's on an exciting path. Look out for some fireworks coming from this young Pio!
Honorable Mention: Jackson Rudh, Hunter Friedrich
Connor Neeser | 14s Tier | Eden Prairie
Connor is another first-year athlete that our staff was excited to our young corps. And he's started his rookie campaign off with a bang. For such a young player, it's inspiring to see so many positive qualities already established - compete level, coachability, consistency, and intensity. And as we've gotten back on track recently with our regular Game Day schedule, Connor has been a beast competing with and against his peers. This young Eagle is flying high so far this summer.
Honorable Mention: Wyatt Brunello, Gavin Kor
Sam Peckham | 13s Tier | Edina
Basically all of the skaters and goalies at our youngest tier are new to the program. So it's always interesting to see who establishes themselves at the front of pack early on. And we think we've got a special one in this young Hornet d-man. From what we saw from him during the winter, our staff knew Sam was bringing solid physical tools into the program. But his coachablity and consistent compete level provides a major boost to his projected upside. Sam sure does look good in the red, white and blue of the MAP South jersey!
Honorable Mention: Mason West, Cristian Hernandez, Riley Zupfer
Cambria Monson | Girls College Tier | Northfield HS
Cambria is a returning MAP South athlete and has brought some veteran leadership to the rink this past month. Much like her body of work from last summer, she's been the picture of work ethic and focus on the ice. We've seen an especially high impact from her in terms of her overall defensive awareness, communication with teammates, and her compete level on Game Day. Cambria has her goals set high, and there's no reason to think that she won't be able to accomplish them. This is a star in the making.
Abby McCullough | Girls HS Tier | Sibley HS
So far this summer, Abby has eaten and breathed determination day in and day out. Showing the utmost consistency and work ethic, she's a great communicator with our staff on the ice and looks to make improvements every day. We have been overly impressed with her intensity off the ice as well, in both workouts and skill development. Abby is a joy to coach and we cannot wait to see where her game improves to by the end of the summer. Talk about an American hero!
Michael Walz | Goaltender | Prior Lake
A lot of the 14s tier skaters having been seeing stars on the ice trying to score on our Goaltender of the Month. Michael is an outstanding athlete who brings intensity and a desire to improve every session he attends. This young Laker has done a great job applying our curriculum to his game and is always asking questions in order to improve his abilities. Walzy did an outstanding job during our first month!
Honorable Mention: Aidan Hesse, Gabe Otis, Aiden Tepper-Engh, Tomas Anderson, Marko Belak