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Top row, from left: Michael Hommes, Emerson Korum, AJ Romanoski; bottom, from left: Daniel Tripicchio, Josh Mattis. Photos submitted

Raider Boys land 5 on All-BRC hockey teams

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sports River Falls,Wisconsin 54022 http://www.hudsonstarobserver.com/sites/default/files/styles/square_300/public/fieldimages/14/0701/spbrcboyshockey.jpg?itok=2oJPnrf_
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Raider Boys land 5 on All-BRC hockey teams
River Falls Wisconsin 2815 Prairie Drive / P.O. Box 25 54022

On the very first day of practice back in November, first-year Raider boys' hockey coach Brooks Lockwood laid out his goals for the program.

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"We want to be one of the top two teams in our section every year, and one of the top teams in the conference every year," he said then.

So far, so good.

The 2012-13 Raiders won their first outright Big Rivers Conference championship since 2003, and made it all the way to the sectional final game before losing in overtime to Superior last Friday, 2-1. Hudson finished the season with a record of 11-1 in BRC play, 19-6-0 overall and regional champions.

"I was so proud of our kids for hitting our goals," Lockwood said. "BRC champs and regional champs; our seniors should be proud of bringing an outright BRC title back to this town and for getting us as far as we did."

Four of those seniors -- co-captains Daniel Tripicchio and Michael Hommes, along with Josh Mattis and Emerson Korum -- and sophomore AJ Romanoski, were rewarded by the conference coaches last week by earning spots on various All-BRC teams.

Tripicchio and Hommes were named to the All-BRC First Team and Romanoski was named to the Second Team while Mattis and Korum received Honorable Mention.

In addition, Tripicchio was named the BRC Player of the Year while Lockwood was named Coach of the Year.

This is the second straight year Tripicchio has been named to the All-BRC First Team. He led the Raiders in scoring this season with 16 goals and 22 assists for 38 points and is the Raiders' all-time leader in points scored by a defenseman with 82.

Hommes earned a spot on the All-BRC First Team for the first time for hockey after being named the 2012 BRC Offensive Player of the Year in football this past fall. He finished second on the team in scoring with 15 goals and 17 assists for 32 points.

An all-conference, all-district and all-state honorable mention outfielder with the Raider baseball team last season, Hommes has signed a national letter of intent to play baseball at Winona State University beginning in the fall.

Romanoski was named to the All-BRC Second Team as a defenseman in his first varsity season after scoring two goals and dishing out 12 assists. He is one of just two sophomores out of the 18 players named to All-BRC teams.

Mattis earned honorable mention as goaltender after posting a record of 11-3-0 with three shutouts this season. He had a 2.11 goals-against-average and .908 save percentage.

Korum was Hudson's third leading scorer this season with 13 goals, including a team-high four game-winners, and 16 assists for 29 points.

Lockwood credited his players for earning him the BRC Coach of the Year honor.

"When you have players like that it's pretty easy," he said. "It's such a great group of kids. I don't think you're ever satisfied as a coach unless you win that last game, but the effort was there every night. I think they can be proud of that."

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Bob Burrows
Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.
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