Barron Stibbe a ‘scoring machine’ for dominant Davies boys hockey team
Davies senior forward Barron Stibbe’s goal-scoring abilities have been on display this season
FARGO — Scoring has always been a strength for Barron Stibbe, but his knack has been especially evident this season.
Stibbe has contributed a goal or assist in every game for Fargo Davies (12-1-0) this season. He's scored in all but three contests and is tied for most goals in the state with 19.
“He’s always shot the puck really well. He’s capitalizing on a lot of his chances,” Davies head coach Nate Metcalf said. “Him and his linemates just work so well together. They complement each other and they put each other in good spots.
“He’s just been a scoring machine so far,” Metcalf added.
Stibbe, a forward, worked on his shot and his hands in the offseason, and it has shown. He has 26 points — the third most in the state — in 13 games, and the senior forward’s ability to put the puck in the back of the net has been on full display this winter with five multi-goal games.
“I think I’m a step quicker this year, and I think my goal-scoring ability has taken a step, as well,” Stibbe said.
Stibbe tallied 11 goals and 22 points in 18 games as a junior. He had 15 points (7 goals, 8 assists) in 19 games as a sophomore. Stibbe has always been more of a goal scorer, but it hasn’t all come naturally.
“It's more so been developed as I've worked on my shot throughout the past few years,” Stibbe said of his scoring ability. “Playing with really good players like Christian and Cam, that helps as well.”
Davies’ top line of Stibbe, Christian Kankelfritz and Cam Bullinger has been an offensive threat all season. The trio has combined for 65 points.
“They’ve been carrying the load,” Metcalf said. “They’re hard workers. They play both ends of the ice, not just all offense. They take care of the defensive zone. They’ve all turned into really complete players.”
Stibbe’s development can be in part traced back to his older brother, Cade, who will play Division I hockey at Arizona State next season. Cade is two and a half years older than Barron and played three years for Davies before leaving to play his senior season with the Minot Minotauros of the North American Hockey League.
Cade led the Eagles with 56 points (25 goals, 31 assists) as a junior and was the team’s top goal scorer (18) as a sophomore. He’s currently playing for the Wenatchee Wild of the British Columbia Hockey League and has six goals and 12 points in 25 games this season.
“He pushes me so hard in the offseasons,” Barron said. “Training, skating, shooting pucks; his success and his drive has pushed me a lot.”
Barron’s parents had him in skates when he was around 3 years old and playing hockey at 4. He and Cade learned to skate together at the figure skating rink inside the Sports Arena attached to Fargo South, but have never played on the same team.
Davies is currently in second place in the East Region standings, one point behind Grand Forks Red River, which holds the top spot. The Eagles got off to a 9-0 start this season, with their lone loss a 5-1 setback to Red River on Jan. 6
“Everybody had a pretty good attitude about it,” Barron said of the loss. “Nobody was too discouraged. We just continued practicing like normal and got back to business with a win against (Grand Forks) Central.”
Davies won its next three games by a combined score of 12-3. The Eagles are a team on a mission this year, after coming up a game short of a state tournament bid last season.
“All the returners have that feeling in their stomach from last year, not making the state tournament. We’re all motivated to get to the state tournament this year,” Barron said. “Everybody’s got the same goals in mind. We all want a state championship.”
Davies next plays Moorhead (12-5) at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Farmers Union Insurance Center at Scheels Arena. The Eagles and Red River (10-2-0) meet again in the regular-season finale for both teams, a game the Eagles have circled on their calendars, Barron said.