Lehrke has solid season as pro
Park Rapids' Tyler Lehrke had a solid season in his professional debut for the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees hockey team.
Lehrke, a 2004 graduate of Park Rapids Area High School, scored nine goals and had 11 assists for 20 points in 50 games for the Killer Bees this season. Lehrke finished 10th on the team in scoring as Rio Grande Valley compiled a 25-35-6 record for eighth place in the Berry Conference standings.
Rio Grande, which is located in Hildalgo, Texas, claimed the final playoff spot in the Berry Conference and was eliminated by Allen, the No. 1 seed, in the first round of the playoffs. Allen swept the best-3-out-of-5 series by scores of 4-1 on March 31, 4-2 on April 1 and 5-2 on April 3. Lehrke had an assist in the third game.
Lehrke tallied his first professional point with an assist in a 4-3 win over Odessa on Oct. 23. Lehrke scored his first and second career goals in a 4-1 win over Texas on Nov. 20.
In a 5-3 loss to Laredo on Nov. 22, Lehrke had an assist and tallied a goal and an assist in a 5-0 win over Bloomington on Nov. 28. Lehrke then tallied an assist in a 4-3 loss to Arizona on Dec. 4.
Over the next seven games, Lehrke didn't tally a point, but broke that scoreless drought with the game-winning goal in a 3-2 win over Laredo on Jan. 18. Lehrke had his best game of the season on Jan. 28 in a 5-3 win over Texas with a goal and two assists and scored a goal the next night in a 5-4 loss to Texas.
Lehrke had a goal in a 4-3 overtime loss to Texas on Feb. 12, scored a goal in a 4-3 overtime win over Laredo on Feb. 25, had a goal and an assist in a 3-2 win over Laredo on Feb. 26, had two assists in a 5-4 loss to Colorado on March 4 and assisted on a goal in a 5-4 loss to Arizona on March 11.
This marked the 19th season of the CHL and the first after joining forces with the International Hockey League to form an 18-team professional league.
Lehrke graduated from Park Rapids as the all-time leading scorer with 89 goals and 103 assists for 192 points. He still holds the school record for career assists and is now second behind Zach Lehrke's 113 goals and 212 points.
In two seasons of junior hockey for the Green Bay Gamblers of the United States Hockey League, Lehrke played in 112 games and had 18 goals and 25 assists for 43 points.
Lehrke moved on to Bemidji State University where he helped the Beavers reach the Frozen Four for the first time in school history as a junior in 2009.
Lehrke concluded his career at BSU with 18 goals and 28 assists for 46 points. As a senior, Lehrke had his best season by tallying 24 points with nine goals and 15 assists in 37 games as BSU qualified for the NCAA Division I tournament for the second year in a row. As a junior, Lehrke played in 31 games and finished the season with two goals and three assists for five points. He had two goals and eight assists in 35 games as a sophomore and had five goals and two assists in 20 games as a freshman.