Austin Poganski is a St. Cloud native and was selected 110th overall in the 2014 NHL Draft by the St. Louis Blues. As a freshman he was named to NCHC academic all- conference team as well most improved player and was ranked 3rd among UND freshman with 14 points in 38 games. Poganski is a forward who plays a strong game in all three zones. He likes to drive the net and is not afraid of getting hit. He is a smart player and very rarely makes the wrong decision on the ice.This season “Pogo” had 10 goals with 15 assists. He was the only Fighting Hawk to take a penalty shot attempt. He converted it and sent the crowd of Ralph Englestad Arena in to an absolute frenzy as the Fighting Hawks defeated the Bulldogs of the University of Minnesota Duluth.
Poganski looks to see increased power play time to cement his role as UND’s most important special teams player. His net front presence on the power play challenges goalies to look around him and avoid detection.Pogo does not get boxed out of the net front very often.Saint Louis has a few of these players on their team including versatile forward Troy Brouwer. Poganski plays a similar game to Brouwer and is a top six jack of all trades player that will be ready for the AHL after one more year at UND.
Poganski had a great year playing in the top six and came into his own as part of the “Heavy Line” that UND deployed to shut down the best scoring line on the other team.Look for Pogo to play more minutes next year,and for his goals total to jump to 20.