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 Hastings.
How last season went
The Raiders wasted no time getting things going during the 2019-20 season. They started with eight wins in their first nine games. That success continued as Hastings averaged 5.16 goals per game.
Along the way, the Raiders picked up key conference wins against teams such as South St. Paul. That propelled Hastings to a third place finish in the competitive Metro East Conference.
As for section opponents, one of the Raiders’ biggest regular-season triumphs came against Northfield. All of this led to Hastings finishing the regular season 17-5-3 and earning the third seed in Section 1AA.
The Raiders are a relative newcomer to the section after spending many years in Section 3AA. But Hastings showed its ability to adapt. In the quarterfinals, the Raiders won a slugfest 7-5 against Farmington.
Then, Hastings dispatched perennial section final contender Lakeville North 6-4. In the section finals, the Raiders nearly made the trip to nearby Xcel Energy Center complete but fell in overtime to Lakeville South, 3-2.
Who’s back and who’s gone
Chase Friermuth is the most significant player lost to graduation for Hastings as he departs following a 59-point season (26 goals, 33 assists). Also gone are (20G, 20A) and Jack Kilmer (12G, 29A).
Jonathan Peiner is set to be back after a big season where he tallied 48 points (23G, 25A).
In net, the duo of Simon Hedin (.913 save percentage, 5 games played) and (.899 SV%, 23 GP) are set to once again lead the back end of the Raider defense.
What to expect next season
Hastings made some significant noise this season both in the Metro East and Section 1AA. There are players returning who can help the Raiders make that jump. It’s likely Hastings will once again push Lakeville South in section play.