ODESSA, Texas – Every North Iowa player has a story to tell of his time with the Bulls. Some are epics that last several years, with game counts in the triple digits, while others make their impact while in transit to another place.
Carter Wagner’s story is one of the latter. After playing 35 games in a two-year stretch for the North American Hockey League’s Minnesota Magicians, he remained in Minnesota for two games last weekend as the Bulls played the Alexandria Blizzard. By mid-week, he was on the road again, recalled to the NAHL by the Odessa Jackalopes.
The Lino Lakes, Minnesota native has long been a highly-thought-of prospect among the junior hockey community. Last November, the Magicians signed him to a tender out of Centennial High School in nearby Circle Pines. He led the Cougars to a fourth-place finish in the Minnesota Class AA state tournament last year to finish his prep career, before tallying six points in eight games with the Magicians to start his junior career.
This past May, the USHL’s Cedar Rapids Roughriders chose him with their 15th-round pick in the league’s Phase II entry draft. Wagner played the first half of the year with the Magicians, adding five points in 27 more appearances with A.J. Bucchino’s team.
His first impact in the NA3HL last weekend was an important one, with the Bulls in a tight race at the top of the West Division. Wagner helped North Iowa pick up three points on the weekend, scoring a pair of goals in last Saturday’s 6-2 win at Alexandria. His first goal in a North Iowa uniform was the eventual winner that night.
Wagner did not play his first weekend back in the NAHL, but figures to be a factor in future games. Odessa came out of a three-game weekend against the Topeka Pilots with three of six possible points.
The North Iowa Bulls thank Carter Wagner for his contributions during his brief time with the team, and wish him the best in his return to the North American Hockey League.
(Photo Credit: Sara Henderson, Minnesota Magicians)