While the Rogers girls hockey team made the section semifinal last season and was one goal short of the section final, it was a different story for the boys hockey team.
The Royals finished the regular season with a record of 9-14-2 before perennial power Moorhead knocked out Rogers with a 7-0 victory in the Section 8AA quarterfinal on Feb. 19. The Royals will be coached by Dave Brown, who is entering his first season as Rogers’ head coach. Brown was an assistant coach with Wayzata from 2015-19. He was an assistant coach on Wayzata’s 2016 Class-2A state championship-winning team. Rogers also hired former Gophers defenseman Jake Parenteau, who made two Frozen Four appearances with the Gophers in 2012 and 2014.
Seven seniors on last season’s team graduated. Defenseman Mitchell Becker led the Royals with 26 points during the regular season and was third on the team in goals with 12. Forward Dylan Timm led the Royals with 15 goals during the regular season and was second on Rogers in points with 22. Goaltender Nathaniel Johnston started the majority of the games for the Royals in 2018-19. Johnston finished the regular season with a record of 5-13-2, a goals-against average of 3.45, a save percentage of .875 and a pair of shutouts.
Key returning players:
Goaltender Patric Loeffler wore No. 33 last season, the same number as NHL legend Patrick Roy. In only five games last season, Loeffler put up Roy-like statistics. He finished the regular season with a record of 4-1, a goals-against average of 1.38, a save percentage of .935, and two shutouts.
Forwards Charles Levis and Jake Jenson both recorded 15 points during the regular season. Jenson scored eight goals while Levis scored six.
The Royals will open the season at home against Anoka on Nov. 21. Rogers will visit Elk River/Zimmerman on Nov. 26, two days before Thanksgiving. Rogers will square off against Holy Angels on Dec. 26 in the Herb Brooks Holiday Classic at Herb Brooks National Hockey Center in St. Cloud. The Royals will face Moorhead on Jan. 2 in a rematch of the 2019 Section 8A quarterfinal.