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 Dodge County.
How last season went
After some struggles playing amongst the Class 2A field, the Wildcats petitioned to move down to Class 1A and were granted that opportunity. Once there, Dodge County showed its ability to succeed. After two straight losses at the start of the season, the Wildcats rattled off 20 wins in 23 games.
That impressive run included 13 consecutive wins to end the regular season, especially one memorable win against Tartan, a team that had flirted with a spot in the Class 1A coaches’ poll.
Dodge County did enough to earn the top spot in the Section 1A tournament. The Wildcats cruised to a 5-1 victory against Winona in the quarterfinals. However, as a relative newcomer in the hockey world, Dodge County’s inexperience might have showed as the Wildcats fell to fourth-seeded Mankato East. The Wildcats’ season came to an abrupt end.
Who’s back and who’s gone
Dodge County likely took a lot in the hockey community surprise based on its lack of previous success. On top of that, the Wildcats are a young group. Brody Lamb, Brendon Wolesky, Charlie Blasdell, Isaac Rogne and Jake Isaak were the team’s top five point-getters, respectively last season. Lamb wowed with 49 goals and 23 assists. In the final nine regular season games, Lamb tallied 26 goals, including a six-goal outburst against Minnesota River.
Besides Lamb’s eye-popping numbers, the rest also posted solid numbers. Wolesky, Blasdell, Rogne and Isaak each combined for 40 goals and 74 assists.
In net, the same sentiment is true. Isaac Dale is set to return after posting a .880 save percentage last season.
What to expect next season
Heading into the Section 1A tournament, Dodge County appeared to be the darling of southern Minnesota. But thanks to Mankato East, that was just a pipe dream. With all of this returning talent, the Wildcats should have a second opportunity at that state tournament along with plenty of motivation to avoid another section upset.