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Fogarty leads Minnesota risers

06/27/2011, 10:45am CDT
By Brian Stensaas, Star Tribune

Edina forward surprised, thrilled to hear his name called by the New York Rangers


Experience served Edina well in the section final against Burnsville, which Steven Fogarty and the Hornets won after trailing in the third. Jeff Wheeler, Star Tribune

Had the NHL draft not been held at Xcel Energy Center this week, Steven Fogarty would have been a no-show to one of the biggest moments of his life.

But fate has a way of working out.

The New York Rangers selected Fogarty, a 6-2, 194-pound forward from Edina, with the 10th pick of the third round (72nd overall) to the surprise of just about everyone in the building.

That includes the man himself.

"At first I wasn't planning on coming, but since it was here ... " said Fogarty, who scored 40 points for the Hornets this season and was ranked 90th among North American skaters on the Central Scouting list. "I was shaking the whole way down [to the main floor]. I definitely didn't see myself going this high, but it's an honor to be drafted by a great team like New York. It still hasn't sunk in yet."

It surely soon will, when Fogarty makes his first trip to the Big Apple and skates at Madison Square Garden at the Rangers' rookie camp.

"Going into the draft, I just wanted to go somewhere," Fogarty said.

About a month ago, Rangers scout Tom Thompson had a lengthy visit at Fogarty's home. Though it was one of several meetings with NHL teams in anticipation of the draft, the feeling was mutual that the encounter was a sign.

It was then announced Saturday that New York traded forward Evgeny Grachev to St. Louis in exchange for a third-round pick, and Fogarty's heart started racing.

Indeed, he was the player they wanted. The meeting with Thompson sealed it.

"It's like buying a puppy or a racehorse as a colt: You look at the bloodlines," said Thompson, former assistant general manager for the Wild. "I met the family, the parents. Just to get a feeling. There are some factors that raise red flags. And in this case, there weren't any."

Fogarty's bump up Saturday wasn't the only one among local players.


Eden Prairie's Kyle Rau hit the puck past Duluth East goalie JoJo Jeanetta for the winning goal in the third overtime of the 2011 Class 2A championship game. Bruce Bisping, Star Tribune

Eden Prairie's Kyle Rau, ranked No. 177 on the Central Scouting list, went 91st overall to Florida.

His luck at Xcel Energy Center, though, should surprise no one. Rau, a 5-8, 163-pound forward, scored the Class 2A state championship-winning overtime goal there in March for the Eagles on a spectacular diving play.

"Can't get any better [than] being drafted 20 minutes from your house," Rau said. "This past year has been amazing. I should buy this place someday."

Holy Angels senior Joseph LaBate didn't exactly receive the warmest of welcomes when he was taken 101st overall. That's because he was selected by Vancouver, a franchise that was jeered all weekend.

LaBate, though, wasn't among the boo-birds.

"You just hope you get picked by a really good organization," he said. "I did and I'm thrilled."

Minnesotans Selected in the 2011 NHL Draft

Name High School Pos. Rd. Pick Team Comment
Mario Lucia Wayzata LW 2 60 Minnesota Wild trade up to take homegrown talent
Steven Fogarty Edina C 3 72 New York Rangers Rangers make moves to get hard worker with great hands
Andy Welinski* Duluth East D 3 83 Anaheim Ducks restock blue line with strong skater
Kyle Rau Eden Prairie C 3 91 Florida Panthers have selected Mr. Hockey winner in back-to-back years, get proven winner in Rau
Mike Reilly* Holy Angels D 4 98 Columbus Blue Jackets add defenseman with excellent vision
Joseph LaBate Holy Angels C 4 101 Vancouver Canucks get center with size, scoring touch
Seth Ambroz New Prague RW 5 128 Columbus Former New Prague Trojan, Ambroz finally picked
Tony Cameranesi Wayzata C 5 130 Toronto Maple Leafs add quick skater with great vision
Nick Seeler Eden Prairie D 5 131 Minnesota Wild draft another local, tough defenseman with hard shot
Eddie Wittchow Burnsville D 6 154 Florida Panthers take physical defenseman, add another Minnesotan
Josh Archibald Brainerd W 6 174 Pittsburgh 2011 Mr. Hockey finalist heads to Penguins
Travis Boyd* Hopkins C 6 177 Washington Played for Hopkins as a freshman
Adam Wilcox* South St. Paul G 6 178 Tampa Bay Wilcox only Minnesotan goalie taken
Patrick Daly Benilde-St. Margaret's D 7 189 New Jersey Devils stock up on strong defensemen
Max Everson Edina D 7 203 Toronto Maple Leafs' late-round pick may be a steal

* Denotes did not play at the high school level through senior season

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