MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — There is less than a month to go until the boys’ hockey playoffs, and the Blaine Bengals want to do what they did last year: Return to the state tournament.

They might also like to have another Mr. Hockey named from their roster.

Ask a hockey player what the sport means to them, and you’ll likely hear something like this.

“It’s everything, I’d say. It’s one of the most important things in my life, behind family and friends, and I love it,” senior forward Cole Hansen said.

Cultivate that love through a community like Blaine High School, and you get a team full of contenders.

(credit: CBS)

“We’re a veteran team. We know what it takes to get back to the big stage. Got a lot of high-end players, a lot of talent,” senior forward Carsen Richels said. “We’re looking pretty good right now. You know, we love the support and feed off the energy.”

The Bengals have produced exceptional talent, including 2019 Mr. Hockey winner Bryce Brodzinsi, and former teammates who would like to follow in his footsteps.

“It’s super cool, just like being in a group of guys like that, and like seeing the past winners like last year, Bryce, who was on our team. Obviously he’s a great hockey player. In the past, people through Blaine have won it,” Hansen said.

One of the greatest strengths a team can have is consistency. Whether it’s game to game, or year to year, or Mr. Hockey. All of that is within reach this season.

“We just got to play more consistent and got to bring it every night. And if we play our best, then we can definitely hang with anybody in the state,” Hansen said.

Norman Seawright III