With the 2020-2021 season only months away, we thought it’s time to showcase the real heroes that keep Goalies sane and Forwards in check. Here is the top Defensemen to watch for this year from each team in Section 6AA.…
With the 2020-2021 season only months away, we thought it’s time to showcase the real heroes that keep Goalies sane and Forwards in check. Here is the top Defensemen to watch for this year from each team in Section 6AA.
Jake Svenddal – Blake #26
The blue and green Bears are losing their top 3 scoring defensemen, but Jake had the 4th most points from the blue line last season (1G, 9A) as a Sophomore. After playing a full year with defensive studs like, who committed to Miami Ohio for the 2021 season, Jake is poised to have a big Junior season for Blake as he takes on more responsibility, especially on the power play. He and his returning D-partner Ryan Ressemann were a combined +40 on the ice last season and will have to produce similar numbers if Blake wants to make a run at the state tournament again.
James Callahan – Benilde St. Margarets #19
Benilde has done a great job of developing well-rounded defensemen in recent years, and James is no exception. He put up excellent stats for the Red Knights (3G, 18A) and was rarely scored on as he finished with a +28 rating on the ice. Withand Tristan Sarsland already committed to Colorado College, it’s only a matter of time before Jame’s takes the leap to the next level of hockey.
Zach Sondreal – Cretin Derham Hall #6
Zach led all Cretin defensemen in points last season as a Sophomore (4G, 17A) and was quickly noticed by USHL scouts. The Dubuque Fighting Saints selected him in the 6th round, #89 overall in the 2020 USHL Futures Draft back in May. Look for Zach and his twin brother Jake Sondreal to continue to flourish for an up and coming Raiders team.
Nick Williams – Edina #7
Nick led all Hornets defensemen in points last season with 18 assists and has already committed to the Unversity of Minnesota. Edina struggled to score the puck for the first time in years last season as they were a very young team up-front, but those growing pains are likely to go away as each player gets more familiar with Curt Giles’ system. Expect a big year from Nick and the always dangerous Hornets this season.
Tucker Ness – Wayzata #22
Tucker is the biggest defenseman on this list at 6’2 205 lbs, and also may have the highest ceiling. He produced 5 goals and 11 assists for the Trojans (compared to 0 points in 18 games the season before) and has been voted the team captain for the 2020-2021 season. Scouts took notice of his improvement too, as Tucker was taken in the 15th round, #225 overall by the Waterloo Blackhawks in the 2020 USHL futures draft.
Sam Berry – St. Louis Park #10
Berry by far had the most points on this list last season with 30 (6G, 24A) for the Orioles and looks poised to repeat his dominance again in Section 6AA. At 6’0 185 lbs he’s another solid sized D-man who caught the eyes of many scouts, as he was drafted in the 4th round, #106 overall by the Fairbanks Ice Hogs in the NAHL Entry Draft.
Alex Lesnar – Holy Angels #8
Alex was the 2nd highest-scoring defensemen for the Stars last season with 8 assists as a Sophomore. With stud defenseman Stevan Blauert (13G, 25A) graduating, that leaves a lot of room and more powerplay opportunity for Lesnar to shine for Holy Angels.
Matt Stuessi – Hopkins
Hopkins was not a very good team last year, but one of their few bright spots was the production from Matt Stuessi at the blue line. Matt was 3rd on the team in points with 6 goals and 11 assists, which is very impressive considering the team had only 59 goals total on the season. Look for Matt to continue to develop and hopefully lead the Lions to more victories in 2021.