The Fergus Falls boys’ hockey team finished last season with a 15-4 record, losing a 2-1 double overtime contest to Little Falls in the finals of the Section 6A Tournament. The Otters also captured the Central Lakes Conference championship for the first time in team history. Head Coach Mike Donaghue, in his 17th season, has an experienced, talented group of players returning from that successful season.
“We return our top 3 scorers from last season in Michael DeBrito (20g, 18a), Isaac Johnson (21g, 15a) and Cole Zierden (12g, 20a), so we should have a good scoring punch at the top of our lineup,” said Donaghue. “We will return great depth at forward in Carter Thielke (6g, 7a), who led the section in power play goals (5), and we will look to Landon Thacker to add additional scoring up front. We also return Ben Swanson who played every minute in goal as a sophomore and finished with a 2.2 goals against average and a 90.9 save percentage. We will need to fill some holes at D, but have great personnel to fill the gaps.”
Andrew Johnson and Colin Becker are returning on the blue line. “Cole Wentworth missed the entire season with an injury last year, but we will look to him to step up and fill a varsity role,” said Coach Donaghue. “We are also looking at Joey Johnson to step up from JV to give us some depth, as well as Kellen Stenstrom to be a key contributor after seeing playing time as a freshman last year.”
Donaghue will be assisted by Trevor Larson, Joey Kalan and Scott Christison. Alexandria and Northern Lakes are his pre-season favorites in Section 6A.
“We have 5 of our top 6 forwards back, so we should have good depth,” noted Donaghue. “We will be confident to play any line at any time. We will have confidence in all of our players that will be hitting the ice. If we can get the consistency and work ethic from the entire team each day, we will be a competitive hockey team.”