USHL: Five Force players named to USA Junior Select team
Even success has its downfalls. The Fargo Force junior hockey team on Monday had five players named to USA Hockey's Junior Select Team. University of North Dakota commits Colten St. Clair and Zane Gothberg were selected along with teammates Garre...
Even success has its downfalls.
The Fargo Force junior hockey team on Monday had five players named to USA Hockey's Junior Select Team.
University of North Dakota commits Colten St. Clair and Zane Gothberg were selected along with teammates Garrett Allen, Brian Cooper and Jimmy Mullin to play in the World Junior A Challenge from Nov. 8 to Nov. 14 in Penticton, B.C.
"It is obviously exciting for those guys," said Force coach Jason Herter. "They are confident they will show well and we know they will make us proud."
Herter described the team as "basically a (United States Hockey League) all-star team."
Now here's the bad part about all of this.
Those players will leave days before the tournament begins leaving the Force five players short during a stretch where they play six games.
The first three games, which are all away games, will be played in consecutive nights while the last three games will be at Scheels Arena.
It could be interesting to see how the Force fare without Mullin, the team's leading scorer or Cooper, the team's top-line defenseman.
Gothberg's departure also means Ryan Massa will play six games in a row unless the Force acquire another goaltender during that stretch.
Fargo's the only team in the USHL to have five players named to the squad.
"It's a double whammy but it is what it is," Herter said. "It will give other kids an opportunity to step up. There are some kids who feel they should have been getting more ice time. Well, this will be their time to prove it to me."
St. Clair is a third-year player with the Force while Cooper has been with the team for two years.
Though St. Clair has committed to UND, Cooper is still weighing his options.
He's being recruited by multiple schools including Minnesota and Nebraska-Omaha.
Allen, who has been with the Force for two seasons, is a Denver University commit.
Gothberg and Mullin, both first-year players, are also NHL Draft picks.
Gothberg, a goalie, was drafted by the Boston Bruins while Mullin, a forward, was drafted by the Tampa Bay Lighting.
Mullin, a Miami (Ohio) commit, leads the Force in scoring with nine points through eight games.
The Force are 4-3-1 coming off an overtime home loss to the Sioux Falls Stampede on Saturday. This weekend is the start of a five-game road trip for the team.
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Ryan S. Clark at (701) 241-5548