The 2017 Star Tribune boys' hockey All-Metro first team (left to right): Nick Leivermann, Eden Prairie; Nick Perbix, Elk River; Ben Meyers, Delano; Metro Player of the Year Casey Mittelstadt, Eden Prairie; Noah Cates, Stillwater; and Jake Begley, Hill-Murray. Star Tribune photo courtesy of Carlos Gonzalez • firstname.lastname@example.org
School: Eden Prairie | Year: Senior | Position: Forward
College Committed: Minnesota
Star Tribune Metro Player of the Year. Took every team’s best shot and maintained his place as Minnesota high school hockey’s best NHL draft prospect in at least a decade. Mr. Hockey finalist scored 22 goals and added 47 assists. He’s averaged three points per game during the Eagles’ 15-game winning streak heading into the state tournament.
School: Delano | Year: Senior | Position: Forward
College Committed: Maine
Mr. Hockey finalist led the Tigers to their first state tournament. Protects the puck, changes gears and can make top defensemen look average. Scored 50 goals and tallied 57 assists.
School: Stillwater | Year: Senior | Position: Forward
College Committed: Minnesota-Duluth
Skilled and smooth and always a threat to create scoring opportunities. A leader for Stillwater, one of the top teams all season. Capped his career with 23 goals and 47 assists this winter.
School: Eden Praire | Year: Senior | Position: Defense
College Committed: Notre Dame
Gifted offensive-defenseman who emerged as a leader on the Eagles’ blue line. Scored the game-winning goal in the section finals among his 11 goals and 27 assists.
School: Elk River | Year: Senior | Position: Defense
College Committed: St. Cloud State
Draws comparisons to former Elks standout Paul Martin. Big (6-4, 195 pounds), strong and a tireless competitor. Mr. Hockey finalist finished with 12 goals and 35 assists.
School: Hill-Murray | Year: Senior | Position: Goalie
College Committed: Undecided
One of three best goaltenders Pioneers coach Bill Lechner said he’s seen in 36 years of coaching. Finalist for the Frank Brimsek Award, given to the state’s top senior goalie. Went 13-5-3, allowed 1.53 goals per game and stopped 93-percent of shots faced.
|Earliest state tournament memory?||Best play this season?||Hockey in your life in 10 years?|
|Jake Begley||Went in 2009 and 2010 to watch Mahtomedi.||Assist to my boy Weston Neubauer against Duluth Marshall.||Playing at the highest level or being a hockey dad.|
|Noah Cates||Skipping school in seventh- and eighth-grade, going with friends and family.||Scoring late to tie it up against Lakeville North.||Hopefully still playing. I believe hockey will always be part of my life.|
|Nick Leivermann||Sitting in a suite when Nick Leddy brought it home against Moorhead in 2009.||Scoring in overtime against Duluth East from the red line.||Working in business as a hockey dad still loving the game.|
|Ben Meyers||Watching Ben Marshall of Mahtomedi.||Put the puck through my legs as I went around the Holy Family defender to score.||Either playing or coaching.|
|Casey Mittelstadt||Seeing Kyle Rau and Nick Leddy win in 2009.||Passing to Nick [Leivermann] so he could score against Duluth East.||Hope I’ll still be playing.|
|Nick Perbix||When Eden Prairie beat Duluth East in multiple overtimes.||Going end-to-end against Duluth East for the game-winning goal.||Still playing but if not I’ll still be part of the game in some way.|
Dev McCabe, St. Paul Academy, junior: Spartans’ catalyst tallied 29 goals, 31 assists. Committed to Minnesota-Duluth
Jax Murray, Elk River, senior: Great finisher (17 goals) stood out among a deep group of Elks’ forwards.
Bauer Neudecker, St. Louis Park, senior: Mr. Hockey finalist scored 40 goals, added 34 assists, led his team in hits.
Matt Anderson, Holy Family, senior: Mr. Hockey finalist led the Fire to its first section title game. Committed to Minnesota-Duluth.
Robbie Stucker, St. Thomas Academy, senior: Controls games. Plays like a fourth forward. Scored 10 goals, dished 37 assists.
Mike Magnuson, Cretin-Derham Hall, senior: Quick and athletic. Rarely gave the opposition a rebound chance.
The Star Tribune’s All-Metro teams and Metro Player of the Year were chosen based on nominations from metro-area coaches, conversations with a panel of coaches and staff observations.