With the 2020-21 season still months out, it’s time to take a look at teams from all over the State of Hockey and examine what happened this past season and what’s ahead. The next team we’re breaking down is International Falls.
How last season went
The Broncos’ season was a tale full of streaks. Just look at the first seven games of the regular season. After dropping the first two games, International Falls rolled back above .500 with a five-game win streak.
As the rest of the regular season went on, there were more and more a streaks. A four-game win streak, a four-game losing streak and a three-game losing streak. Amidst the roller coaster ride came wins against Hibbing/Chisholm and Proctor and a 13-11-1 regular season record.
In the Section 8A tournament, the Broncos went up against Eveleth-Gilbert with the winner getting the tough task of going up against top-seeded Warroad. International Falls didn’t get that chance as it lost in the quarterfinals and saw its season draw to a close.
Who’s back and who’s gone
Seniors drove a lot of the success for the Broncos. That included Bradyn Dremmel, Justin Besch and Klan Gonzales. They combined for 32 goals and 41 assists in their final seasons of high school hockey.
Here’s the good news for International Falls: there’s talent to lean on. That includes Brady Wicklund, who had a team-best 33 points last season (17 goals, 16 assists). Besides Wicklund’s anticipated return is the fact both of the Broncos’ goaltenders are set to return. Mitchell Nemec posted a .908 save percentage in 16 games while Max Marcotte finished with a .846 save percentage.
What to expect next season
It’s been decades since those in Minnesota hockey have thought of the Broncos as a major threat. There’s a lot of work to be done by this border town to catch the eyes of the hockey community. That means having success but also supplanting perennial powers such as Warroad in Section 8A.