MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — When the Vancouver Canucks took Burnsville’s Brock Boeser in the first round of the NHL Draft last June, they must have figured they’d be getting a good player.

But even Boeser himself didn’t imagine the kind of freshman season he’s now having at North Dakota.

“I expected kind of a lot from me coming in,” Boeser said, “but I don’t know if I expected this much coming in.”

Boeser leads the National Collegiate Hockey Conference in points, with 25 goals and 26 assists in 38 games. He’s 4th in goals and 6th in points in the whole NCAA. He’s already secured his place in North Dakota’s storied hockey history, with more goals and assists than Jonathan Toews and TJ Oshie had as freshman.

He’s also just one goal shy of Zach Parise’s freshman total of 26, which is more than anybody has scored up there in 30 years.

“Joining them like that, it definitely means a lot to me,” Boeser said. “Because they’re NHL stars.”

He’s the top player on the top-ranked team in the country. As a freshman who only turned 19 last month. In a sport where the average age of a college player is 22.

And Boeser is soaking it all in.

“I think as the season grew and I started to do better as the year went on, the hype got a little bit more,” he said. “I mean, [the] Vancouver Canucks, their whole organization, their fan base, they’re big on watching their team and the future prospects.”

And he feels the support from back home too.

“The support around me has been tremendous,” Boeser said. “A lot of Burnsville people have come up to North Dakota and watched me play. And when we play in St. Cloud, the support there was tremendous.”

The only question now is where people will have to travel to watch him next year.

“I’m just going to finish out the year here, hopefully win a national championship, and then we’ll see if I stay another year next year,” Boeser said, “or see what comes down to it and what’s best for me.”

For now, he’s just enjoying being a North Dakotan, and all the fun he’s having.

“It’s unbelievable,” he said. “You really can’t explain it.”

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