Grosse Pointe North senior Chris Lorelli skates with the puck Nov. 14 in a game against Birmingham Brother Rice. Lorelli is the team’s leading returning scorer.

Grosse Pointe North senior Chris Lorelli skates with the puck Nov. 14 in a game against Birmingham Brother Rice. Lorelli is the team’s leading returning scorer.

Photo by Sean Work


Grosse Pointe North hockey looking to keep things simple

By: Zachary Manning | Grosse Pointe Times | Published December 4, 2018

GROSSE POINTE — Defense and simplicity.

That is what Grosse Pointe North hockey is focusing on this year. After trying to out-skill teams last season, North coach Joe Drouin would like his team’s approach to be smarter and more calculated this year.

At press time, the Norsemen were 0-3 overall and 0-2 in the Michigan Interscholastic Hockey League, but Drouin is proud of the work his team has put in so far.

“One of the things we want to work on is definitely our shooting and our passing. We’re still working on a little bit of the team concept, but we got some guys that are very good players,” Drouin said.

The Norsemen graduated eight seniors from last year’s team, and playing in the MIHL can be tough. Over the last five years, the league has had eight state champions across all divisions.

With such a young team, Drouin wants to get to a .500 record and compete against some of the top teams in the league. He’s also hoping that these tough conference games will prepare his team for out-of-conference matchups and future playoff games.

“We see the game at a completely different speed,” Drouin said. “You play Brother Rice, you play Orchard Lake St. Mary’s and then we go and play Alpena — who had nine seniors on their team — and the game slows down for our guys. They see things a little better.”

Some senior leaders who are helping the young team get adjusted are center Connor Albrecht, goalie Brian Clogg and right winger Chris Lorelli.

With the team only having three offensive lines and four defensemen, Albrecht and Lorelli are playing a lot of minutes. Drouin called Albrecht a top-five player in the state and added that the younger players look up to him.

Drouin called all three of those seniors great leaders. As leaders, some of the main focuses for them have been keeping the guys involved during drills and making sure they stay engaged on and off the ice.

“In a couple drills, if they’re struggling, just help them out, pull them to the side and tell them to calm down. It’s nothing special, just hockey,” said Lorelli, who is the team’s leading returning scorer.

Grosse Pointe North’s next game is at 7:50 p.m. Dec. 7 at Grosse Pointe Community Ice Arena against Pontiac Notre Dame Prep.