Rebels put 5-win season in the rearview


November 24, 2023

After a 5-19 season last year, the Moose Lake Area Rebels boys hockey team is looking to turn those numbers around this season as they feel they have a squad capable of double-digit victories.

“We are expecting to be over .500 with our record this season,” said second-year coach Chris Gamst.

While the Rebels graduated their top two scorers from last season, Gavin Mlaskoch and Everett Gamst, they feel they have some strong players this year that will help to pick up the scoring slack.

“This season we will rely on senior forwards Jaxsyn Schmidt and Dawson Fjosne as well as senior defenseman Jordan Bird,” Gamst said. “Junior Joey Olson, who was out for over half the season last year, should also have a big season as well.”

A year ago, the Rebels featured a roster of 24 players and this season they have 19. While the numbers are down from a year ago, the upperclassmen depth is strong. MLA returns five seniors, eight juniors and six sophomores.

In goal, the Rebels will feature junior Eli Gilbertson, who saw action in half the games last season.

“Eli will be a strong player with a high compete level who will need to play well for us to be successful,” said Gamst. “Eli is a three-sport athlete who also plays football and baseball.”

Back on the blue line, the Rebels also return a strong contingent of athletes. That should bode well in the transition game, which should also lead to more offense than a season ago.

“We have four returning defenseman: seniors Jordan Bird and Dalton Slama and juniors Ethan Dresel and Henry Wyandt,” Gamst said. “They all got significant ice time last season.”

Gamst expects a big season for his squad.

“I believe we should be able to win anywhere from 10 to 14 games this season,” he said. “We will have to play strong team defense and find ways to score goals.”

Now in his second season, Gamst has a good idea of what his players are capable of.

“I have the foundation of the systems in place, so we should be able to build off of that from a year ago,” Gamst said. “We just need to find ways to score and reduce the number of penalties and our special teams will also need to improve.”

With another season under their belt, as well as a full season with their current coach, optimism is running high that the Rebels will be a much improved team this year.

The Rebels open their season on the road against Mora at 7 p.m. Nov. 30.


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