A.J. Michaelson, the Apple Valley forward ranked No. 1 on the Hockey Hub's list of the state's top 30 sophomores, has declined an offer to join the U.S. National Developmental Team Program's national Under-17 team for next season, according to Apple Valley coach Jerry Hayes.
The 5-foot-11, 175-pound Michaelson attended the developmental program's evaluation camp March 27-30 in Ann Arbor, Mich. He was offered a spot on the U-17 team and originally given until Monday, April 12 to make his decision. Michaelson was given an extension from that original deadline and on Sunday evening decided to stay at Apple Valley and play for the Eagles next season.
Michaelson had 19 goals and 16 assists for the Eagles last season despite missing seven games with a groin injury. He returned to the lineup in time to lead Apple Valley to its first state tournament appearance since 1996.
Michaelson played for Section 3A/AA in the Reebok High Performance Minnesota Hockey Advanced 16s Festival April 16-18 at Plymouth Ice Arena and scored two goals in three games.