This summer, Roseville has continued the tradition of training together in
order to strengthen the team’s on- and off-ice bonds.
The Raiders started the summer refreshed and are enjoying their Summer Training Program under the direction of Jeff Pauletti and his staff of Carl Hamre, Kent Hamre and Matt Schugel. Raiders alumni Tom Bartel, Cole Knowlton and Nick Lehr are also helping out.
While the STP program is not affiliated with the high school, most of the participants have played on the high school teams.
The training and chemistry building the team is going through, is in hopes of another successful year in the Suburban East Conference and a long postseason run.
Roseville graduated 11 seniors, with some going on to play at the junior and Division III levels.
These departures will leave big shoes to fill, as training and fine-tuning of skills have begun for the 2012-13 season.
The Raiders are scrimmaging many teams this summer and started their summer
with a great effort against Centennial. Other teams they scheduled include Champlin Park, Blaine, and a scrimmage fest in Red Wing against Red Wing, Anoka, and South St. Paul.
“The kids are having a good time, and competing really hard,” Pauletti said. “It’s fun to see them compete against other teams during the summer. It breaks up the routine, and the intensity level picks up when they are playing against other players.”
Red Wing coach, Mike Belisle has invited Roseville to participate in the Raiders’ summer scrimmage fest for the seventh season.
This season each Roseville player was to bring dry and canned food products for Red Wing’s Hockey for Hunger Program, which will provide food for Red Wing’s food shelf.
The Raiders have had their fare share of junior and college players go through the summer training program, which was started by former Raiders coach Steve Sertich (1994-2003). Sertich is the head women’s hockey coach at Bemidji State.
Former Raiders and Minnesota State players Michael Dorr and Adam Mueller have stressed the importance of staying together and participating in the summer program as a way to continue to build skills and show leadership skills as you get older.
“Training and skating over the summer is not only about getting better for yourself, but also growing as a team and knowing that everyone is working towards the same goal,” said Dorr, who could have left for the USHL before his senior season. “To win and become better both on and off the ice.”
Summer training gave Dorr a springboard toward advancing his career, and he is planning to play pro hockey in Germany.
Mueller sees the summer program as a great way to interact with teammates on a more informal setting.
“Practices and training are more regimented and intense during the season, but the summer program allowed us to do things we normally wouldn’t do during a game,” he said. “We have the ability to freestyle and kid each other about mistakes we made or the great moves we made. I miss these times and had a blast with my classmates and coaches.”
Former Raider and Gustavus Adolphus forward Brad Wieck said, “The Raider summer hockey program was the best way for me to stay in shape, stay fresh, and to connect with my friends and teammates during the offseason. The strong relationships and chemistry our teams had throughout the years were largely due to our consistent time together during both the on and offseasons. That chemistry and training contributed to our success during the regular season.”
Another former Raider and Gustavus defensemen Matt Schugel (now a coach in the program) brings his positive experiences back to the program.
“For the summer program we do lots of competition against each other but at the same time make it fun,” Schugel said. “Players are able to work on many different skills throughout the summer. They are able to work on individual skills as well as those that help the team. It's great for the kids to be with each other at the rink throughout the summer.
“Playing with each other, the players learn the tendencies of the other players. The summer program gives kids an opportunity to meet other kids who were not on their team the previous year. It's always a good thing to meet new people and play with different players. I will always remember the good times I had with everyone in camp.”
Last season’s captain Tom Bartel added, “The summer program is a great way to spend time with your friends and teammates, while staying in shape and improving your skills in the off-season. It was some of the most fun I’ve ever had. Now that I have graduated, I love coming back every day and helping out. Hopefully being able to spread some of what I’ve learned from the coaches and my playing experience in order to help the current players and the team become better.”
This season the Raiders are led by senior captain Robb Stautz and junior captain Drew Colvard.
“The summer training camp motivates players to try new skills that they may not practice as often in order to better their game, and it is a great opportunity to interact and build relationships with teammates in the off-season,” Colvard said. "The coaches have made it a very competitive setting, which makes playing more fun and prepares us for the regular season.”
Stautz added, “During the summer many of our players participate in our STP program. It helps make individuals better and unites us as a team. Last season we graduated many varsity players and we have a lot of young players coming up to fill those roles. Being so close to the State Tournament last season is just driving us more this year to work hard in the off- season to reach our goal of playing at the “X” in March.
“The most important thing for a team to have success is good chemistry. We already have a great group of guys who all get along and the STP program just helps more. As a leader, I have a big responsibility to make sure things are going how they are supposed to and to make sure we follow the Raider tradition of excellence. I’m excited for this up-coming season I feel we will have a strong team.”
The message has stayed the same over the years in Roseville. A team that stays together, trains together and comes together for a common goal will have success no matter what the outcomes will be. Only time will tell, but this year’s team has started off on the right foot.