Shattuck-St. Mary’s players in Mankato to cheer on Minnesota State alum, coach
MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) — Friday’s Hockey Day Minnesota alumni game was a special moment for a couple of Minnesotans on the Shattuck-St. Mary’s U16 hockey team.
”I think it’s going to be awesome, I’ve got my buddies playing on the ice soon, later, it’s going to be great. Seeing all this is amazing,” Shattuck-St. Mary’s goaltender Riley Burnett said.
For Minnesota natives Riley Burnett and Andrew Politoski, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take in the Hockey Day Minnesota atmosphere in Mankato.
“I first got here, looked at my team, and said ‘this is really cool.’ This is my first time coming to Hockey Day Minnesota, they did a really nice job with the rink,” Shattuck-St. Mary’s defenseman Andrew Politoski said.
The two are now teammates at Shattuck St. Mary’s.
“This year, I was fortunate enough to be on the same team as him. I was excited for that because we had just that chemistry from playing against each other, and it was great to have him on my team and be able to play with a kid I grew up playing with, it’s just an honor,” Politoski said.
Burnett and Politoski are the only two Minnesotans on the U16 team at Shattuck St. Mary’s, a program that continues to produce NHL talent.
“We have a lot of players that have come out. Zach Parise, Jonathan Toews, Sidney Crosby, Erik Haula, Teddy Blueger and many others that have come out of Shattuck. It’s a really cool thing to think about, I’m playing where they played, it’s super cool,” Politoski described.
“It’s the best thing that’s come to me so far, it took everything to go there, a lot of dedication,” Burnett added. “It’s great to be able to represent Mankato and bring that community over here, that’s the best part.”
The pair look up to former Minnesota State Maverick Des Christopher, who’s also an assistant at Shattuck St. Mary’s, and were cheering on their coach when he took the ice on Friday.
“Oh, the committee has done a wonderful job. This place is the greatest. I can’t wait to see everybody, get on the ice, and afterward have a laugh, it’ll be the best,” Christopher said.
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