LAKEVILLE, Minn. (WCCO) — Last year, the Lakeville North boys hockey team advanced to the state tournament, only to lose in convincing fashion to Edina in the first round.

This year, they got over the hump with an overtime win over Roseau in round one. And a big part of this year’s success is coming from senior forward Tristen Hazlett – this week’s Aspire Athlete of the Week.

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“Words can’t describe. I’ve been looking forward to this moment my whole life and now we just got to keep it rolling,” Hazlett said.

Last year’s crushing first-round loss to Edina was Hazlett’s inspiration for this year’s state run.

“Personally, I mean, I just try and do all I can to help the team win,” he said. “I mean, I haven’t really changed anything I’ve done all year.”

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What he’s done is come up big. During Lakeville North’s section run, Hazlett had nine points, three goals and six assists.

But perhaps his biggest assist of the year came in Thursday’s state quarterfinal game. Hazlett had a hand in the game-winning overtime goal that got his team over that first-round hump.

And like a true team player, he gives credit to everyone on the ice.

“This is the closest team I’ve ever been on,” Hazlett said. “Regardless of age, I mean, I consider everyone in there my brother, and it’s just awesome. We like to joke around, have fun.”

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Hazlett says he plans on playing juniors next year, and then hopefully Division I college.

John Lauritsen