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20 metro-area players to watch

By Star Tribune, 11/28/11, 9:33PM CST

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20 METRO-AREA PLAYERS TO WATCH

1. Phil Boje, sr., D, Mounds View

Participated at the USA Hockey national player development camp in July.

2. Blake Cates, sr., G, Stillwater

Won 14 games and compiled a 1.91 goals-against average and .932 saves percentage last year.

3. Lance Carney, jr., D, White Bear Lake

Third-year starter succeeds with a competitive yet poised demeanor.

4. Max Coatta, jr., F, Minnetonka

Second-leading goal scorer (16) in the Elite League leads a deep group of Skippers forwards.

5. Jay Dickman, sr., F, St. Paul Johnson

Uses large frame (6-5, 240 pounds) to keep the puck and soft hands to bury it.

6. Aaron Dingmann, jr., G, Wayzata

Emerged as the Trojans' starter late last season. Stopped 90 percent of shots faced in the playoffs.

7. Jake Guentzel, jr., F, Hill-Murray

Played on the Pioneers' top line as a sophomore and tallied 30 assists. Exceptional passer.

8. Blake Heinrich, jr., D, Hill-Murray

Tough, hard-hitting player who makes contributions offensively.

9. Jake Horton, sr., D, Benilde-St. Margaret's

Offensive-minded defenseman scored 20 goals. Captained soccer team to Class 1A title this fall.

10. Lucas Kohls, sr., F, Forest Lake

Strong skater with good size (6-2, 190). Tallied 39 points last season.

11. Zach LaValle, jr., F, Hill-Murray

Smart player who contributed 47 points despite battling injuries. Quarterbacked Pioneers football team to Class 4A semifinals.

12. Dan Labosky, jr., F, Benilde-St. Margaret's

Played for the U.S. Under-17 team at the Five Nations tournament in August.

13. Vinni Lettieri, jr., F, Minnetonka

Committed to the Gophers. Skates well and has a nose for the net.

14. Eli May, sr., D, Eagan

Plays a physical style but uses good hands and vision to move the puck.

15. Lou Nanne, jr., F, Edina

Consummate competitor with an infectious love for the game. Committed to the Gophers.

16. Grant Opperman, sr., F, Breck

Possesses an extra gear in open ice and goes to the net well. Committed to Dartmouth.

17. T.J. Roo, jr., F, Totino-Grace

Nearly unstoppable with the puck deep in the offensive zone. Scored 21 goals last season.

18. Eric Schurhamer, sr., D,

St. Thomas Academy

Committed to Maine. Plays with a high motor and an aggressive style.

19. Dylan Steman, sr., F, Maple Grove

Relentless player who finds a way to finish. Led Crimson with 44 points.

20. Michael Zajac, sr., F, Eagan

Can be the best player on the ice. Contributed 56 points to the Wildcats' state tournament run.

DAVID LA VAQUE

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