Trending Up: Jackson Strukel of Hibbing

After making a name for himself as a standout bantam, Jackson Strukel continues to make waves as he’s off to a brilliant start to his high school career. 

The 2008-born defenseman has shown shutdown capabilities thanks to good footwork and excellent agility. Strukel displays great gap control and does not allow opposing forwards to play within his triangle. Jackson has played with a very high IQ, knowing when to apply pressure and when he should hold his position to cut off lanes. 

Jackson’s puck movement has been efficient, making crisp outlets and being able to skate it out when available. He plays responsibly and does not go cowboy when heading into the offensive zone, instead he uses his teammates and all options available. If the only play is to dump and chase, he does so. Strukel is always anticipating the next step and moves to open space at appropriate times. His 12 points in 12 games is a testament to the progression of his offense. 

We can talk about his attributes all day, but what it comes down to is his compete level. During recent viewings Jackson has shown that he plays with guts and often wants it more than his opponents. Even during a summer High Performance game where his team was getting waxed, Strukel played as it was 0-0 and winning battles through pure determination. 

Strukel is playing with great poise despite being a freshman and a late 2008 (December). His play is pushing up his stock and Jackson is proving that he has the ability to play hockey at the next level(s).