GRAND RAPIDS — The coronavirus couldn’t have come at a worse time in relation to Micah Miller’s hockey career.
Miller – a 2017 graduate of Grand Rapids High School where he scored 106 points for his career – had recovered from a slow start during his sophomore season as a forward for the St. Cloud State University men’s hockey team, playing an important role for the Huskies during the last half of the season. After a freshman season where he scored four goals and had seven points, he had seven goals and 11 assists this season and overall was a plus five on the ice before the season ended prematurely.
“The season started out slow for me but I caught a groove and I started playing better,” Miller said. “Our team really had a hot streak toward the end of the year but then too bad the season got cancelled. I think consistency was the biggest thing in my improvement.”
Miller said it was disappointing to have the season end the way it did, and he said he really doesn’t know what is going to happen for next season.
“Hopefully everything starts on time and we can get fans in there,” Miller explained. “I am not sure if we will be able to do summer training but we will start doing our own training at home. During the last half of last year I was playing better every weekend so I hope to carry that over to next season. I hope to get better during the off-season and increase those (scoring) totals.”
Miller said he enjoyed playing in the Grand Rapids youth hockey program while growing up, playing with his buddies in state tournaments in Peewees, Bantams and high school.
“We were a really tight-knit group and that definitely helped us,” Miller said. “We pushed each other every day and we were really close.”
Miller was asked what it was like to culminate his high school career with a Thunderhawk state championship in 2017, and he said, “You couldn’t ask for more. It was just the best to win the state title with your best friends. You will remember it for life, you will remember the small stories that happened throughout the year. It was a lot of memories.”
Miller said he has added much-needed muscle to his 5-foot, 9-inch frame and now weighs close to 200 pounds. He said his low center of gravity can pay dividends for him on the ice.
“You work on it every day,” Miller said. “I was always smaller growing up so you learn really quick that you have to give it back as much as you take it. I think it is a little bit of an advantage when you have a low center of gravity.”
With two more years of eligibility at St. Cloud State, Miller was asked if he has dreams of playing professionally.
“For sure playing in the NHL or playing in the AHL is always a dream,” Miller explained. “It is possible and I would like to see next year go well. But I definitely aspire to play professionally after my career at St. Cloud.”