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Former Okotoks Oiler helps Denver win NCAA title

Calgary forward Rieger Lorenz scores in Denver Pioneers’ Frozen Four triumph
Rieger Lorenz, pictured as a member of the Okotoks Oilers during the 2021-22 season, won the NCAA Frozen Four championship with the University of Denver Pioneers, scoring in the final as Denver knocked off Boston College by a 2-0 count on April 13 in St. Paul, Minnesota. (Brent Calver/Western Wheel File Photo)

A former Okotoks Oilers ace has helped the Denver Pioneers hit double-digit NCAA titles.

Rieger Lorenz, who skated with the Oilers during the 2020-22 seasons, scored the second goal in the Denver Pioneers’ 2-0 shutout over Boston College to take home the NCAA Frozen Four Men’s Hockey championship Saturday night in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Lorenz, a second-round draft pick of the Minnesota Wild in 2022, took a terrific set-up from highly-touted NHL prospect defenceman Zeev Buium and swiftly found the back of the net with a well-placed wrist shot to double the advantage late in the second period.

The 6-foot-3 forward posted career bests of 15 goals and 28 points in his sophomore season with the Pioneers.

Denver was the No. 3 seed in the Frozen Four competition with the top-ranked Boston College entering the final on a 15-game winning streak.

The Pioneers knocked off Boston University in the semifinal in a 2-1 overtime thriller while Boston College chased the Michigan Wolverines by a 4-0 count.

The Pioneers team is well-represented by AJHL alumni, particularly from the Calgary area.

Starting netminder Matt Davis, a former Spruce Grove Saint is from Calgary, and had a remarkable 35-save shutout in the final.

Fellow goalie Freddie Halyk is a Cochrane native who spent part of last season with the Camrose Kodiaks.

The team also features Calgarian Kent Anderson, who played with the Drumheller Dragons, on defence along with former Brooks Bandits blueliner Boston Buckberger, Calgary centre Carter King, who played in the BCHL with the Surrey Eagles, and former Sherwood Park Crusader and St. Albert native Cale Ashcroft.

Denver has the most NCAA Frozen Four titles at 10, and most recently won the title in 2022 with another former Oilers forward in Jack Works on that team.

Remy Greer

About the Author: Remy Greer

Remy Greer is the assistant editor and sports reporter for and the Western Wheel newspaper. For story tips contact [email protected]
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