Roseau's Paul Huglen (8) fires a shot that is blocked by St. Cloud defenseman Cory Warner before it can reach goaltender Brian Streitz. Photo by Loren Nelson, SportsEngine
The numbers just don’t add up.
Roseau, with an enrollment of about 330 students, is the smallest school playing Class 2A hockey in the state. Sure, the Rams always have skilled players, but enough to form three lines so interchangeably good that any one of them could be labeled No. 1?
Roseau beating big-school teams because of its superior depth seems about as unlikely as palm trees sprouting on the Canadian border. Yet there were the Rams on Saturday against St. Cloud, trotting out forward line after forward line that produced scoring chances and goals at equal rates in a 5-1 triumph at the Municipal Athletic Center in St. Cloud.
“We have three players up front that played in the Elite League, and they are very good hockey players,” Roseau coach Andy Lundbohm said after the Rams, ranked No. 10 in the Class 2A coaches’ poll. “But they all seem to play better at center.”
Lundbohm was referring to the trio of senior Paul Huglen and juniors Gavin Gunderson and Max Strand. They were Roseau’s top three scorers last season, combining for 62 goals and 57 assists, mostly playing on the same line. They are among the Rams’ points leaders again this season, although the scoring has been much more evenly dispersed among the team’s top nine or so forwards.
“We’ve got lot of good players this year, and we work well together,” said Huglen, who scored twice against St. Cloud (2-1-0). “I wasn’t sure about playing center at the beginning of the season, but I really like it.”
Roseau senior Paul Huglen (8) celebrates his second-period goal against St. Cloud on Saturday. Photo by Loren Nelson, SportsEngine
Roseau scored three goals in a span of 2 minutes, 19 seconds early in the second period on its way to an 5-1 victory over St. Cloud on Saturday afternoon in matchup at the St. Cloud Municipal Athletic Complex with Class 2A, Section 8 playoff seeding implications.
Tyler Bjerk, Brock Monsrud and Paul Huglen scored Rams’ second-period goals, the flurry putting them ahead 4-0 with 13 minutes, 11 seconds remaining in the middle period. Huglen’s goal capped the outburst and sent St. Cloud starting goaltender Brian Streitz to the bench in favor of backup Ben Condon.
Kellen Murphy scored in the first period for Roseau, ranked No. 10 in the Class 2A coaches’ poll. The Rams (4-0-0) outshot St. Cloud 22-10 through two periods.
Andrew Cumming scored the lone goal for St. Cloud (2-1-0) in the third period on a power play after had Huglen scored earlier in the period to put the Rams ahead 5-0.
St. Cloud beat Roseau 4-2 in Roseau in the teams’ lone meeting last season. Both teams lost to Moorhead in the section playoffs; St. Cloud 8-2 in the semifinals and Roseau 3-2 in the championship.
The MN Hockey Hub poll is for entertainment purposes only.