The Northfield boys’ hockey team was hovering around the .500 mark nearing the halfway point of the season. Raiders coach Mike Luckraft had to find a way to keep the power switch on.
The Raiders have since put together an eight-game winning streak, averaging nearly seven goals per game during that stretch.
“We typically change up lines during the holiday break. That gives the guys a few practices to adapt to new linemates,” Luckraft said. “We had a rescheduled game for Jan. 2 with the new lines [a 4-2 loss to Rochester Lourdes]. That became a one-game deal. Some combinations just didn’t work. We revamped the lines the next day and tried to balance our skill players with our grinders and develop three strong lines. That has really taken hold over the past three weeks and the game results have been nice.”
The Raiders were 6-5 through their first 11 games. During that span, they averaged over seven goals per game in their victories and two goals per game in their setbacks.
“Like every high school program the team is so different from season to season,” Luckraft said. “Different personalities, different skill players, different levels of intensity. That’s one of the fun parts of coaching, trying to adapt to and configure your team to get the best results, in a fun environment, and continue to grow as a program and develop as a team.”
• Sophomore goaltender Gavin Enright turned in back-to-back impressive outings for the Farmington boys’ hockey team. He shut out Class 2A, No. 7 Lakeville North 1-0, turning aside all 35 shots in the South Suburban Conference matchup. It was his third shutout of the season. That performance came two days after making 43 stops in a 2-1 overtime loss to No. 1-ranked Benilde-St. Margaret’s. He allowed only seven goals in a six-game stretch while making 171 saves.
• Northfield senior forward Luke Harris became the school’s all-time leading scorer in boys’ basketball during a 24-point performance in a 53-43 victory over Rochester Mayo in a Big 9 Conference matchup. He broke Zach Filzen’s career mark of 1,488 points set in 2007. Harris is averaging 16.9 points per game in his final prep season.