Where freshly developed highway-exits snake off into the untapped woods of Minnesota’s bustling northwest suburbs, live some of the state’s best goal-scorers. The proximity of the high schools in this area, create a multitude of high-paced hockey games. This density creates the perfect atmosphere for the players listed in my top snipers and scorers list today. Fresh off several Minnesota State High School Hockey Tournament appearances, and conference success; here’s a preview of players who score when it matters most.
1. Garrett Schifsky F (Sr., Andover H.S.) A smooth-skating player who can play all forward positions; sparked his team in a tremendous junior season where he notched 27 points (19 goals, 8 assists). He is looking to build on that incredibly productive season with the Andover High School Huskies where he led them to a postseason birth and should see top-line minutes due to his versatility. Several of his top-scoring teammates have graduated and he will likely be called upon to be a workhorse for a strong, experienced team. Watch out for him to increase his goal-scoring due to his strong playmaking and skating ability on power-play.
2. A.J. Carls ( Sr., Centennial H.S.) A strong two-way player, Carls brings a discipline and consistent scoring ability. Tasked with taking on the Northwest Suburban Conference’s top lines; he has wasted no time showing his off his own scoring putting up 40 points (20 goals, 20 assists) last season. He has shown strong tendencies against the conference’s top opponents last season, which include four of his twenty goals coming against Maple Grove and Andover, respectively.
(Sr., Maple Grove H.S.)
3. Jacobs is a speedy, two-way forward for Maple Grove. He will look to improve on his Senior following an impressive 13 goal campaign last season. One notable spot he stands out is off the rush as his commitment to defense has allowed second chance points. He is adept at stealing the puck for himself and to set up teammates going to the net. Expect the Crimson to look to him as one of their leaders on the power-play this season.
Bryce Laager F (So., Blaine High School)
Laager has proven worthy of much praise after making a name for himself as a sharpshooting Freshman on the Bengals. Laager added 19 points (7 goals, 12 assists) and was a fixture in big moments for the blue and white.