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Undeniable: Bay Reps' Grant Lucas headlines 2024 All-Region Hockey Team as Player of the Year

Apr. 21—TRAVERSE CITY — To break it down into the simplest of terms, Grant Lucas is good at hockey.

No, not just good. The senior forward for the Bay Reps is downright spectacular when he steps on the ice. He proved that over and over again during the 2023-24 campaign.

Lucas started his final high school season by flying out of the gates on fire — absolutely blazing. His early success was so substantial that it was going to be difficult for anyone else to catch the Elk Rapids High School product in the race for the Record-Eagle Hockey Player of the Year honor.

And no one did.

"I wanted to show everybody what I'm about," Lucas said. "I couldn't have done it without my teammates and coaches and family, of course. (Being Record-Eagle Player of the Year) was something I'd looked up to and wanted to be. I knew I would need that for the next part of my game and to know that I have it in me to be the best."

Lucas leads the Dream Team as the Player of the Year and captain after an incredible senior effort that saw him help lead the Bay Reps to a regional title and the state championship semifinals.

"This was awesome. I've been working really hard to get to where I'm at," Lucas said. "Expectations have been high, so I'm glad that I was able to meet them. But I still know I wouldn't have done it without all of the support I've had."

His special season started early when he scored two goals in the season-opening win over Cranbrook Kingswood and lit the lamp once in a 2-1 victory over Manistique.

Lucas then had back-to-back games with four goals and followed that up with a hat trick, giving him 19 points — 14 goals and five assists — in the first five games of the season, which were all wins for the Reps.

He collected three or more points in seven of his first 14 games — including three five-point performances and one game with four goals and two assists for a cool half-dozen points. He scored at least two points in 10 of those 14 and tallied at least one in all 14 before being kept off the stat sheet by Grand Rapids Catholic Central.

Lucas attributed his fast start to playing in a fall league downstate — TPH Michigan Hockey Advancement — that put him against top-notch competition in Detroit, Boston and Rochester, New York. That allowed him to come into the high school season already in the zone.

Lucas finished the regular season with 37 goals and 18 assists. He then scored four times and assisted on three other goals in the Reps' regional playoff wins over Cheboygan and Petoskey. In the state championship quarterfinal against Alpena, Lucas earned another hat trick — his eighth of the season — in a 5-1 victory over Alpena to send the Reps to the Frozen Four for just the second time in program history.

In 29 games, Lucas had 12 multi-goal games, six multi-assist games and 24 games with at least one point.

"I'm definitely not cocky or anything. When I go out there, I know that I've done all of this work and I deserve to be the best," Lucas said. "I just use all of my skills and knowledge to put myself in the best spot to score or do whatever I need to do to help the team win."

Making incremental gains brought Lucas to the level at which he now finds himself. His goal every time he touched the ice was to work on different aspects of the game so he could get that extra step and extra jump on his opponents.

"Hockey is a difficult sport. You just have to chip away at it and learn something new every day," he said. "I wish that it was just a thing where it all clicked, but it's not — at least not for me."

All of that chipping away is part of the grind, Lucas said.

"This is everything I've dreamed of doing, and it's great — especially to be able to do all of it with the guys on my team," Lucas said. "To have my family watch was amazing, too. I'm just so glad I was able to pull through and achieve so many of my goals."

One of his next goals is to play hockey at the collegiate level. But first, Lucas will lace up his skates for the Odessa Jackalopes of the North American Hockey League down in Texas. His hope is to play for the Jackalopes for two years and then earn a spot on a college roster.

That certainly seems like a successful blueprint as Traverse City West alum Michael Schermerhorn played in the NAHL and just recently committed to play hockey for the Univerity of Notre Dame.

"It's super rare for someone to go straight out of high school into college hockey," Lucas said. "I'm excited. I know that I can hang with those guys and stick out. So I'm just going to keep up the hard work and keep moving forward."

For Lucas, hockey is not just a sport or a game. It's a place that gives him something he can't get anywhere else, and the people he has behind him have helped push him to greater and greater accomplishments.

"Friends and family," Lucas said when asked what drives him to be the player and person he is. "That's enough for anybody."

Lucas' journey on the ice began in place with a great deal of ice — Anchorage, Alaska. He lived and played hockey there until his family moved to northern Michigan in 2015. Lucas and his family still have fond memories of their time in the 49th state. The two family dogs are even named after cities in Alaska, Juneau and Kenai.

"It's so beautiful up there. It's unlike anything you'll ever see," Lucas said of Alaska. "I remember just skating on a lake and how beautiful the scenery was."

Going from Alaska to Michigan and soon to Texas will be quite the move, but Lucas said he is eternally grateful for the people who have been there and will be there by his side every step of the way.

"I just want to thank my mom and my dad and my brother for always being there and being my biggest supporters and pushing me to be my best. I couldn't have done it without them," Lucas said. "And the same goes for my teammates and coaches over the years, and my opponents too. Thank you all."

2024 RECORD-EAGLE DREAM TEAM

Grant Lucas — Bay Reps (Player of the Year)

Lucas seemingly wrapped up this award early in the season and then just continued playing at an elite level through the rest of his senior campaign, helping lead the Reps to the Frozen Four as a state semifinalist. In 29 games, Lucas scored 44 goals — including eight games with a hat trick or better — to go along with 22 assists. Lucas had just five games in which he didn't score or assist on a goal.

Thomas Boynton-Fisher — Bay Reps

If not for Lucas' incredible season, the elder of the Boynton-Fisher brothers would have been a top candidate for Player of the Year. The senior collected 20 goals with 38 assists for 58 points, scoring multiple points in 16 of his 29 games played and notching at least one point in 24 of 29.

Ethan Coleman — Bay Reps

Coleman was part of the Reps' three-headed monster with Lucas and Boynton-Fisher that dominated the ice from game one en route to a Frozen Four appearance. The senior was a perfect mix of natural and earned talent, collecting 14 goals with 33 assists for 47 points in 29 games.

Larson Millar — Bay Reps

Millar was one of the many unsung heroes on the state semifinalist Bay Reps, quietly putting together an incredible season while sharing the ice with some of the best players in Michigan. Millar provided balance for the Reps, scoring 18 goals with 21 assists in 28 games.

Tyler Boynton-Fisher — Bay Reps

The Bay Reps played 29 games during the 2023-24 season. Boynton-Fisher was between the pipes for 27 of those games — as a sophomore. He faced 634 shots and stopped 576 of them, good for a .909 save percentage with a 2.20 goals-against average.

Brandon Meyers — Traverse City West

Meyers' ability to score and assist his fellow Titans on their scoring chances made him the motor that drove TC West. The senior forward finished with 13 goals and 23 assists, scoring at least one point in 20 of his 25 games played.

Kallen Ray — Traverse City West

Ray is bound for a standout senior season after putting together a great junior campaign for the Titans in 2023-24. Ray got stronger as the season went on, scoring 20 of his 28 points in West's final 14 games. He finished with 11 goals and 17 assists.

Brady Lewis — Traverse City West

Lewis was a scrapper on the ice, picking up two goals and seven assists. But the sophomore Titan's fight and determination after suffering life-threatening injuries during a late-season game make him a no-doubter for the Dream Team. Lewis has a long road of recovery ahead of him, but if the will, strength and character he displayed on the ice are any indication, he'll continue forward as best as he possibly can.

Graham Peters — Traverse City Central, So.

As just a sophomore, Peters was the highest-scoring player for the Trojans in an up-and-down season. He finished strong with 11 of his 27 points in Central's final eight games, tallying eight goals with 19 assists in 26 games played.

Laiken Batcha — Traverse City Central, Sr.

Batcha had a wealth of talent that served the Trojans well throughout the 2023-24 campaign. The forward finished with 11 goals and 17 assists for 28 points in 27 games, including four points (a goal and three assists) in the Trojans' playoff-opening win.

Arthur McManus — Traverse City Central, Jr.

Not too often does a defenseman lead a team in goals scored, but that is exactly what McManus did for the Trojans in his junior season. McManus opened the season with a hat trick against Gaylord and then scored six goals in Central's final six games to end with 13 goals and 7 assists.

Noah Bodurka — Petoskey, Sr.

The senior for the Northmen was neck and neck with Lucas for Player of the Year honors through the first eight games of the season. Bodurka racked up 20 points through those eight games and finished the season with a balanced offensive attack at 21 goals and 23 assists for 44 points in 27 games.

Anderson Ward — Petoskey, Fr.

Ward has a mighty bright future ahead of him after putting together a season worthy of Freshman of the Year honors, scoring at least one point in 22 of his 27 games played, including a five-point effort against Negaunee. Ward finished with 18 goals and 18 assists for 36 points.

Madden Pateman — Petoskey, So.

Pateman finished his sophomore campaign on a strong note, scoring 21 of his 32 points in the Northmen's final 13 games. He ended with 21 goals and 11 assists for 32 points in 27 games.

Bryton Thaxton — Gaylord, Jr.

Thaxton was another who found himself in the running for Player of the Year, and he likely will be in contention for the honor next season as a senior. The junior Blue Devil opened the season with a 3-goal, 2-assist effort against Wyandotte Roosevelt and ended up with 28 goals and 16 assists for 44 points in 22 games.

Collin Garbulinski — Gaylord, Jr.

Garbulinksi finished his season with a six-point game against the Bay Area Thunder, scoring two goals and assisting four others. He finished his 22 games with 13 goals and 14 assists for 27 points.

Gabe Outman — Cadillac, Sr.

The senior Viking put together a solid season that saw him lead Cadillac in scoring with 21 goals. He also finished with eight assists for 29 points in 24 games.

Mitchell House — Cadillac, Sr.

House was the second-leading scorer for the Vikings. The senior finished strong, and he ended the 2023-24 campaign with a baker's dozen goals and 10 assists for 23 points in 24 games.

SECOND TEAM

Rowan Blain — Bay Reps

Ryan Lannen — Bay Reps

Lewis Walter — Bay Reps

Joel Ziecina — Bay Reps

Alonso Ovaitt — Traverse City West

Lincoln Seyferth — Traverse City West

Jonah Starr — Traverse City West

Robert Councilor — Traverse City West

Landon Totten — Traverse City West

Hudson Robertson — Traverse City West

Cole Herzberg — Traverse City Central

Drew Zrimec — Traverse City Central

Zander Lorincz — Traverse City Central

Devin Garner — Traverse City Central

Collin Benedict — Traverse City Central

Kelvin Kloosterman — Traverse City Central

Blake Weaver — Traverse City Central

Kiel Knapp — Traverse City Central

Chase Lafaive — Petoskey

Kameron Horn — Petoskey

Forrest Neff — Petoskey

Thomas Guiney — Petoskey

Nick Timm — Petoskey

Brody Sorenson — Gaylord

Grady Smith — Gaylord

Nick Brandsma — Cadillac

Kadin Hawkins — Cadillac

Blake Seelye — Cadillac

Cadyn Rossell — Cadillac

Keanan Foster — Cadillac

Zach Beckhardt — Cadillac

Lukas Schade — Lakeshore Badgers

Drake McKay — Lakeshore Badgers

HONORABLE MENTION

Carter Denoyer, Bay Reps; Aiden Fairbank, Bay Reps; Jake Dunphey, Bay Reps; Michael Frederick, Bay Reps; Zach Gerlando, Bay Reps; Eddie Walter, Bay Reps; Thatcher Beaudoin, Bay Reps; Elliot Mason, Bay Reps; Carter Dobb, Traverse City West; Harrison Heller, Traverse City West; Owen Ferrill, Traverse City West; Seth Munro, Traverse City West; George Guerin, Traverse City West; Gradin Osmulski, Traverse City West; Drew Davison, Traverse City Central; Ben Burley, Traverse City Central; Matthew McKinney, Traverse City Central; Zack Troyer, Traverse City Central; Jackson Dobreff, Traverse City Central; Kaiden Boyce, Petoskey; Trevin Boyce, Petoskey; Evan Kring, Petoskey; Finn Kelly, Gaylord; Connor Graham, Gaylord; Eric Olsen, Gaylord; Teddy Chafer, Gaylord; Christian Aude, Gaylord; Bjorn Tracy, Cadillac; Taylor Owens, Cadillac; Devin Garner, Cadillac; Ryan Lincoln, Cadillac; Thomas Rahilly, Cadillac; River Claveau, Lakeshore Badgers.