Minnesota is deep with talent each year, but we will take our six against your six any time. Here's a high school girls hockey Dream Team for 2023-24, the best six players in the metro area, as selected by the Star Tribune's David La Vaque, and 15 others who made his decisions difficult:
Lindzi Avar, Minnetonka, senior forward
Started fast for the Skippers this season with 10 points (four goals, six assists) to tie for the team lead through four games against solid opponents. A versatile center who plays a 200-foot game, Avar is committed to Cornell. But first, she wants to lead loaded Minnetonka to a Class 2A state title.
Mackenzie Jones, Andover, junior defender
Not afraid to use her size (5-11) and strength to muscle opposing players in corners or in front of the Huskies' net. Not that her game is without offensive flair. Contributed nine goals and 14 assists last season. Gave a verbal commitment to Wisconsin.
Cailin Mumm, Andover, senior defender
One of three elite defenders propelling the Huskies this winter. Mumm, a captain, led Andover with four points (one goal and three assists) through three tough games. Represented the United States at the 2023 IIHF Under-18 Women's World Championship. Committed to St. Thomas.
Ayla Puppe, Northfield, senior forward
Big (5-8) and strong, Puppe is a textbook power forward. Hands, you ask? Her mitts are some of silkiest. Tallied 53 goals and 35 assists a season ago. The likely Ms. Hockey candidate started this season with nine goals and nine assists in five games. Committed to the Gophers.
Josie St. Martin, Stillwater, senior forward
Led the Ponies last season with 23 goals and 28 assists for 51 points. Stillwater stumbled out of the gate this season with a 1-2 record against a stacked schedule, but St. Martin remained dangerous with four goals and four assists. One of the state's fastest skaters, St. Martin is committed to Ohio State.
Dani Strom, Maple Grove, senior goaltender
Crimson coach Jim Koltes calls Strom, who committed to St. Thomas, "one of the best I have ever seen play the position." Won three of the Crimson's first three games this season by shutout and allowed just one goal overall. As a junior, she stopped 95% of shots faced and permitted just 1.36 goals per game.
Grace Bickett, Orono, senior defender
Chloe Boreen, Hill-Murray, senior forward
Addie Bowlby, Lakeville North, senior forward
Kendra Distad, Minnetonka, senior forward
Hannah Halverson, Edina, senior forward
Carly Humphrey, Elk River/Zimmerman, senior defender
Josie Lang, Stillwater, senior defender
Courtney Little, Andover, junior defender
Zoe Lopez, Orono, junior forward
Lily McKenzie, Champlin Park/Coon Rapids, junior forward
Addy Mitchell, Eden Prairie. junior forward
Makayla Moran, Apple Valley, junior forward
Lily Pachl, South St. Paul, junior defense
Bella Shipley, Maple Grove, senior forward
Grace Zhan, Hill-Murray, senior goalie