Top line of Stobb, Lass, Duren setting dominant tone for 4-seed Onalaska hockey

Onalaska boys hockey can remember very easily how last season came to an end.

Initially feeling disrespected as an 8 seed, the Hilltoppers still battled to the state quarterfinals, where they eventually fell to No. 1 seed University School in the tightest match USM would see all tournament.

That disappointment was a tough feeling to shake all year, so instead of burying it deep down, the team used it as fuel.

“It was kind of a letdown last year,” senior Tommy Duren said. “We expected to go farther. That’s what we wanted, so coming into this year we had a lot of motivation. We knew what we wanted to do from the start.”

It’s translated this winter to a 21-win season, and the top line of Carter Stobb, CJ Lass and Tommy Duren have stood out in a big way, totaling 187 points as a trio. These guys were all put on the same line during freshman year and haven’t looked back. They say they’ve accomplished a lot together, but there is still one more goal.

“We’ve all been playing with each other since we were five, six years old, so we’ve always had that chemistry,” said Lass, who leads the team with 70 points.

“The overall goal for all three of us was to go to state and try to make a run for a state championship,” Stobb, the team leader with 40 goals, added. “That was the goal from day one.

“It’s been an amazing four years and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”

Onalaska opens regional play Tuesday night at home against the Avalanche.