Stebner, Pietila named Tech hockey captains
HOUGHTON – The Michigan Tech hockey team named its captains for the 2013-14 season Thursday. Junior forward Blake Pietila and senior defenseman Brad Stebner will serve as co-captains. Assistant captains will be junior forward Tanner Kero and senior forward Dennis Rix.
The four players were selected by their teammates. Stebner served as assistant captain a year ago. The other three will wear letters for the first time as Huskies.
“The team vote was consistent with the coaching staff’s feeling on who our leaders are,” said head coach Mel Pearson. “All four of them are solid picks. We will have strong core leadership as we begin play in the revamped WCHA.”
Pietila (Brighton, Mich.) has played in 74 games as a Husky with 24 goals and 24 assists for 48 total points. He was named the Merv Youngs Award winner as team most valuable player last season after putting up 14-10=24 in 35 games.
Stebner, a two-time WCHA Scholar-Athlete, has appeared in 102 games over the last three seasons on Tech’s blue line. The Fort McMurray, Alb., native owns 22 career points including a goal and 10 assists in 35 games a year ago.
Kero registered 24 points on 11 goals and 13 assists last season and was named the team’s Harold Meese Sportsmanship Award winner. The Hancock, Mich., native has 40 points on 20 goals and 20 assists in 72 career games.
Rix (Grande Prairie, Alb.) was one of only six Huskies to play every game in 2012-13. He put up six goals and five assists to boost his career totals to 12-15=27 in 111 games. Rix earned the team’s Rick Yeo Unsung Hero Award each of the last two seasons.
Michigan Tech will begin its 93rd season of intercollegiate hockey in little more than 90 days. The Huskies open with Laurentian on Oct. 5.