Howie: Hermantown shines in summer prep boys hockey tournament

Hermantown was impressive in the Lakeview Summer Classic high school boys hockey tournament last weekend at Mars Lakeview Arena in Duluth, winning two of three games despite playing without standout senior forward Blake Biondi who was preparing to compete in an elite world junior tournament overseas later this week.

The defending Section 7A runner-up Hawks showcased a strong defensive corp, led by elite junior Joey Pierce who played right wing on the top forward line a year ago. Seniors Drew Sams, Zach Carson and Indio Dowd stood out. Jackson Lucia, Jack Glockle and Brady Rothe will compete for top-six spots.

Up front, Virginia High transfer Zach Kilen and burly Jack Mathison were impressive, along with junior super-sniper Aaron Pionk. Ethan Lund and Aydyn Dowd are also elite forwards to watch.

Jacob Backstrom was solid in goal and likely will be the No. 1 starter to open the season.

“We have such a great culture here in Hermantown with our four outdoor rinks, kids skating every day from after school to 10 p.m.,” said Mathison. “Having the big crowds cheering us on, from the kids to our grandparents, it’s great.”

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