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Team preview: Superior Spartans

Superior Spartans

Coach: Jason Kalin, 17th season

2016-17 record: 12-13-2

Conference: Lake Superior

Key departure: D Braden LaPorte (5 goals, 5 assists, 10 points)

Key returners: Jr. F Taylor Burger (13-16—29); jr. F Trevor Dalbec (7-10—17); sr. D Luke Drougas (4-12—16); jr. F Tyler Nelson (8-24—32); sr. F Max Plunkett (13-13—26); jr. F Grant Sorensen (6-8—14); sr. F Tucker Stamper (6-5—11); sr. G Caden Welch (2.85 goals-against average, .891 save percentage)

Loose pucks: Most of Superior’s roster returns intact after following up an unsightly 4-21-1 record in 2015-16 with 12 wins last season. Two of them came in the playoffs before the Spartans’ magic ran dry in a 7-0 loss to Hudson that left them a game shy of the program’s 38th state tournament appearance. Hudson went on to claim a state title. Superior, which owns 13 Wisconsin championships, will be gunning to dethrone the Raiders. Most of the offense is back, as is talented netminder Welch, who posted four shutouts as a junior. The Spartans averaged a respectable 3.15 goals per game last winter, up from 1.79 the year before. They carried a four-game losing streak into the postseason. In back-to-back contests vs. Hudson in January, Superior lost 3-2 and tied the Raiders 1-1. The Spartans last were victorious at state in 2015, when they ended the year below .500.

SCHEDULE

At 7:30 p.m., unless noted

Home games at Wessman Arena

Nov. 24 — at Green Bay Notre Dame

Nov. 28 — at Rice Lake, 7 p.m.

Dec. 2 — at Hudson, 4 p.m.

Dec. 5 — at Chippewa Falls, 7 p.m.

Dec. 9 — Menomonie, 3 p.m.

Dec. 12 — Cloquet-Esko-Carlton

Dec. 14 — North Shore

Dec. 16 — at Antigo, 3 p.m.

Dec. 19 — Proctor

Dec. 21 — at Duluth Denfeld (Heritage Center), 5:15 p.m.

Dec. 27-29 — at Showdown in Titletown

Jan. 4 — Duluth Marshall

Jan. 13 — Eau Claire North, 2 p.m.

Jan. 17 — Hibbing-Chisholm

Jan. 18 — Greenway

Jan. 20 — Hudson, 4 p.m.

Jan. 25 — at Cloquet-Esko-Carlton, 7 p.m.

Jan. 30 — at New Richmond, 7 p.m.

Feb. 1 — Duluth East

Feb. 5 — at Hermantown

Feb. 10 — Eau Claire Memorial, 8 p.m.

ROSTER

2 Logan Leif F So.

3 Kobe Hansen F So.

4 Cayden Laurvick F Jr.

5 Jakob Holmlund D Jr.

6 Max Plunkett F Sr.

7 Jaxon D'Auria D So.

8 Luke Drougas D Sr.

9 Gunnar Hansen F So.

10 Grant Sorensen F Jr.

11 Blake Hanson D Sr.

12 Ian Johnson F Jr.

13 Kaleb Ullan F Sr.

14 Alex Hanson D So.

15 Drew DeBruyne D Jr.

16 Tucker Stamper F Sr.

17 James Bronson F Jr.

18 Keagan Rice D Jr.

19 Ty Christianson D Sr.

20 Joe Eliason F Sr.

21 Trevor Dalbec F Jr.

22 Derrick Mattson D Jr.

23 Sean McCoshen D So.

24 Max Curtis D Jr.

25 Tiegan Roden F So.

26 Taylor Burger F Jr.

27 Spencer Gudowski F So.

28 Thomas Sitek D So.

29 Austin Buck F Jr.

30 Caden Welch G Sr.

31 Dayton Podvin G Jr.

33 Archer Siers F Fr.

34 Ethan Welch F Fr.

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