Boys hockey sets their sites on state tournament


The time of year is here where hockey fans go wild! After losing a tough section final game against Eden Prairie last season, the HF boys hockey team is back with a vengeance.

This year, the team is lead by senior captains Ben Almquist, Joe Hankinson, and Brady Ziemer. The season is just beginning and the boys have already played in an annual tournament, as well as two regular season games.

Over Thanksgiving, the Fire started off the season at the Turkey Trot Tournament where they played Edina and Wayzata. They had a tough first game, losing to #1 Edina 0-7, but were able to turn it around in the second by beating Wayzata, 5-1.

Overall, they took third in the tournament, which was a good note to start the season on. Senior Captain Brady Ziemer is excited to be back out on the ice with his team, saying, “We have a team full of unselfish players with great work ethics. This season we are looking to take the next step and play in the state tournament. Every season we have been able to get one step closer and the next step this year is state.”

One of Ziemer’s fellow co-captains Joe Hankinson also gave insight into the season stating, “Expectations are high, as always, for our team this year. We have a lot of young guys and new transfers that came from other schools and we are really working on everyone getting to know each other as players to form chemistry as a team. We know we are capable of being a top team in state this year and will keep working towards that.”

So far HF has started off strong in the regular season games beating Litchfield this past week 9-0, and then tying Orono this weekend 3-3.

At the moment, the team is working to figure out their best plan of attack, after taking on a number of new players. The transfers this year include Conan Hayton from Colorado who is the starting goalie, Garrett Pinoniemi who is already committed to SCSU as a sophomore, Michael Spinner, Adrian Franco, Trey Fechko, and Jack Haley. It is apparent that they are already a part of strong team and are contributing to its overall success early in the season.

“We have a very talented team and have a good chance at going to the state tournament this year,” stated newcomer Jack Haley.

After talking with the boys, it is apparent that they all have the same goal, which is to have a successful season where they grow as hockey players.

Senior Captain Ben Almquist stated, “Coming into the season our team had some high expectations that I believe we can achieve. As of now, we are still improving and coming together as a team. I do believe that this team has a chance to do big things if we continue to improve and learn from our mistakes.”

The HF hockey team expects help from their fans, and invites everyone to attend their next game on Tuesday, December 5 at home. Game time is 7:00, be there!