Performance: Stevenson's Seth Lause
January 9, 2020
Livonia Stevenson senior – Hockey
The four-year varsity center accomplished one of the rarest of hockey feats Saturday against No. 3 Hartland, scoring three short-handed goals in No. 2 Stevenson’s 5-2 win to earn the MHSAA “Performance of the Week.” Although the National Federation of State High School Associations does not keep a record for short-handed goals in one game, it is possible that Lause was only the second player nationally to score three at the high school level, following Lucas DeBenedet of International Falls, Minn., in 2011.
Lause is tied for the team lead in goals this winter with eight and ranks second with 12 assists as Stevenson is off to a 9-1-1 start. He made the Division 2 all-state second team last season with five goals and 12 assists over 19 games. The MHSAA also has not previously tracked a record for short-handed goals in one game – but for added perspective, the feat has been achieved only once in NHL history. Lause’s first goal came in the second period, and his second and third scores came during the same power play over 1 minute, 29 seconds, during the third period.
Stevenson has had one of the state’s strongest programs over the last decade, making at least the Quarterfinals five straight seasons, finishing Division 2 runner-up twice and winning the championship in 2013. After helping his team to another title pursuit, Lause hopes to continue playing at the junior level after graduation in the spring. Whether he begins college later or right away, he’s interested in the medical field and particularly psychology – and carries a 4.4 GPA at Stevenson.
Coach David Mitchell said: "Seth is a tireless worker ... both on the ice and in the classroom. He is an extremely high-character student-athlete that works tirelessly on his craft. It's been a real honor and pleasure to watch him grow as a player, as a person and as a leader. The sky's the limit for Seth with regards to his future. He is for sure leaving his mark on Livonia Stevenson hockey."
Performance Point: “The first goal was just a fortunate bounce. I think one of their guys missed a pass, and I ended up being on a line rush 2-on-1 with my teammate Noah (Turner). I was just looking for a shot on the first one, just trying to go low stick, since he had the low stick kinda showing me a little bit of that, and the rebound just came out to me when I shot it there, and I ended up burying it,” Lause said, describing his three goals. “The second one was (Ian) Kimble had a good play with his stick. He poke-checked it around one of their defensemen, came in, and created space for himself in the zone and saw my flying into the net. And so he threw it down into the corner and I picked it up down low, and I came around the net on my backhand side and I was looking around to see where everyone was at. I kinda looked off the goalie, and the goalie I saw was low and he had the high short side open, and so I flipped it up over and went up on the high far side. And then the third one was just a good play by Adam Heard. I was calling for it. I got behind their D at the far blue and he found me and gave me a great pass on my tape, and I just came in and shot it high glove. Honestly I didn’t even know we were still short-handed on my third goal, but everyone told me after the game that it was still short-handed and I’d scored three shorties, and I thought it was pretty cool. At first … I didn’t realize to scale how big of a deal it was.”
Fueled by fun: “It’s just been fun. Last year, I was more focused on just doing as much as I could to win. I still do now, but I don’t put as much pressure on myself now. It’s just a great thing, since it is my last year, just kinda taking a different approach to it this year and just letting everything go and going out and having a blast. This may or may not be my last moments playing; with my friends and for my high school, obviously this is the last year. It’s just been a lot of fun playing with these guys. I think that’s just been the big difference – me letting go mentally and just having a blast doing it. … I’ve always known there’s been something special (with this team), just every year we’ve been here. But this year especially, it’s been just a lot of guys bought in earlier. It just happens quicker with some teams than others. The approach that we’ve had has just been a lot more relaxed, a lot more fun. This group has really connected with one another, and everything’s just clicking right now.”
Play hard, cheer hard: “We usually go to all the other events that we have (at school). So basketball, swimming, volleyball, other sports – we always attend their games. We try to show support that way by going and trying to create a small student section if you will, the whole hockey team. We go to every sport that we can, even tennis we go to. …. Our coach really takes pride in that too, because for everyone who comes to our games, all the peers who come to our games, he likes to give back to them and say thanks, honestly, just for a support they give us. Without them, it’s totally a different environment.”
Stevenson strong: “We just work hard. Our effort is our floor here. We’ve always prided ourselves on being one of the hardest-working teams, both on and off the ice, also involving ourselves in the community (and) we reach out to a lot of teams. We go to a lot of other team events here at our school. We just put a lot of pride in ourselves and the extra stuff we do. It’s just what makes us, us. We’re very involved in development and trusting the process of development and just being a team that works hard. We really just pride ourselves on that.”
The doctor is in: “Anything medical, I’m really interested in. … I’m mostly focused on the brain. I just love how the brain works. There are other organs like the heart that everyone knows about – we know every single little detail about the heart. But the brain is just something that’s so mysterious that a lot of people haven’t figured out yet. So that’s a thing that intrigues me – what is really going on, and something to just figure out because it’s a developing thing right now.”
– Geoff Kimmerly, Second Half editor
Dec. 5: Mareyohn Hrabowski, River Rouge football - Report
Nov. 28: Kathryn Ackerman, Grand Haven swimming - Report
Nov. 21: Emily Van Dyke, Southfield Christian volleyball - Report
Nov. 14: Taylor Wegener, Ida volleyball - Report
Nov. 7: Carter Solomon, Plymouth cross country - Report
Oct. 31: Jameson Goorman, Muskegon Western Michigan Christian soccer - Report
Oct. 24: Austin Plotkin, Brimley cross country - Report
Oct. 17: Jack Spamer, Brighton cross country - Report
Oct. 10: Kaylee Maat, Hudsonville volleyball - Report
Oct. 3: Emily Paupore, Negaunee cross country - Report
Sept. 26: Josh Mason, South Lyon soccer - Report
Sept. 19: Ariel Chang, Utica Eisenhower golf - Report
Sept. 12: Jordyn Shipps, DeWitt swimming - Report
PHOTOS: (Top) Livonia Stevenson's Seth Lause is a four-year contributor to one of the state's top programs. (Middle) Lause also is serving as a captain this winter. (Photos courtesy of the Livonia Stevenson hockey program.)
Moggach Honored Nationally for 25 Years of 'Sticking In, Doing Good'
By Tim Robinson
Special for MHSAA.com
March 17, 2023
When Paul Moggach began his tenure as Brighton’s hockey coach, the program was at its nadir.
“When we got into high school hockey, it wasn't very good,” he said recently. “Our league wasn't very good. Our team wasn't very good. We started with character to try to build something different, you know, a different mousetrap.”
Over the next quarter of a century, Moggach and his assistants, primarily Rick Bourbonais (whom Moggach succeeded as coach) and current coach Kurt Kivisto helped lift the program into one of the most respected, and successful, in the state.
Moggach (pronounced MUG-uhth), along with former Detroit Catholic Central coach Gordon St. John, in February was named a co-recipient of the John Mariucci Award by the American Hockey Coaches Association.
They, along with Andy Weidenbach of Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood, are the only Michigan coaches to have received the award, named after the longtime hockey coach at Michigan Tech.
“He brought in people that he knew could do things he may have had limitations at,” said Kivisto, who played for Moggach at Brighton two decades ago and was an assistant for 10 years before taking over as head coach in 2020. “He did a good job surrounding himself with people he trusted and knew would be good for the program while he steered the ship in the direction he wanted. And he was very good at that.”
Moggach calls the honor “very humbling.
“I got into hockey because there was a need,” he added, “then I ended up with Rick at the high school for those years. When you look back at it, I grew a lot. I grew a lot personally and from a coaching perspective I grew. I had to change things, and so I think it's not so much the reward as at least a recognition that I stuck it out. My grandmother used to always tell me, ‘Stick in and do good.’ She would say that when I was on the way out the door. That was her message to me, and I think (the award) just emphasizes that I did, I did stick in.”
“You can’t be happier for a guy than for a guy like Paul,” said Bourbonais, who coached with Moggach at Brighton for a total of 30 years, the last 20 as an assistant. “He took a hockey team and made it into a hockey program that is a top-five contender every year. Guys come out of the program with championships, but they also come out with life lessons and some idea of what it takes to be a great citizen and a great student as well as what it takes to be a great athlete.”
At first, though, there were trials. The Bulldogs struggled in his first two seasons, and the program itself was in jeopardy for a short while after a bench-clearing brawl.
Once that crisis passed, Moggach and his staff, which for many years consisted of Bourbonais, Mike Brown and Jason Valente, worked to rebuild the Bulldogs from a team known for its physicality to one with a more wide-open passing style of play.
When hockey trends went to a more defensive style, where the defense sparked the offense, Moggach adapted.
During the first decade of his tenure, as the Bulldogs had more success and built their reputation, teams that had shunned scheduling them in the past began adding Brighton to their schedules.
He kept looking for ways to improve his team, both on and off the ice.
Brighton was the first team to schedule a game with those in the Keweenaw Peninsula, both for the keen competition, but also as a team-bonding exercise.
The bus rides, about 11 hours each way, helped players who in many cases didn’t know each other outside the rink to bond. So did activities outside of hockey including team dinners and curling, and the experience of being together as a team for four days.
Other teams took notice, and team bonding trips, including those far shorter than the 550 miles from Brighton to Houghton, are commonplace.
Soon after, he introduced a skating coach and stricter team nutrition to the program.
“It’s not something that we had done when I was in high school," said Kivisto, who graduated in 2003. “It was something that some of the families and players weren’t overly excited about, but he knew it was good for the team and he was always looking ahead and finding ways to give his team an advantage.”
Brighton grew to dominate its league, and winning gave Moggach the authority to introduce concepts new to players and families who grew up in travel hockey.
“I'm sure we weren't pleasing everybody,” he said, “But we thought we would do with character and live the kind of model that we would hope that the players would follow, that their families would follow. And as we did that it changed and we got in front of some things with our league, and had a good run in our league.”
Brighton won its first Division 1 championship in 2006. That was followed by back-to-back Division 1 titles in 2012 and 2013, and then 2017 and 2018, a stretch that saw the Bulldogs reach the Finals in six out of seven seasons.
“Some of that is when you learn how to win, you win, even sometimes when you shouldn't,” he said. “I'm not saying that you know when we got to the Finals that we didn't deserve to win. We had a good recipe there that got us those five wins, but once we got it rolling, that momentum kept us going sometimes then maybe it shouldn't have.”
As the program’s success and reputation grew, players who had been in travel hockey started opting to play for the Bulldogs.
“There are some kids on (this year’s Brighton) team who came from Triple A who are tired of that commitment, because of the travel, the time, the money,” he said. “And they found that high school hockey is different. I mean just look at the crowds. They don't get that kind of a reward for the work that they put in.
“I think it's developed to that point now for us and we get players like that and it's made a difference, I think, and not just for our team but for all of high school hockey, " Moggach continued. “The coaches association has done a great job in promoting now and so it is a great destination for so many good reasons for kids to spend that time and grow up with their friends who are in their neighborhoods and in their community.”
Moggach is still a fixture at Brighton games, still in close touch with Kivisto when not driving to see his grandsons play or his stepson, Damon Whitten, who coaches at Lake Superior State.
His impact will be felt in Brighton hockey for years to come.
“He left no stone unturned to try and be the best he thought we could be,” Brighton athletic director John Thompson said. “He’s one of those people who was genuinely invested in young people, and he always, always put the program first. He was a good manager of young men and developed some pretty good coaches, too.”
Moggach finished with a record of 467-172-43. St. John, who won six state titles at Catholic Central and another at Cranbrook, had a record of 229-29-18 in 10 seasons at Catholic Central.
“I was excited for (Moggach) when I heard the news,” Kivisto said, “seeing him put at a level of the guys who have won the award and the contributions they made to high school hockey. It’s neat to see him recognized at that level.”
Both men will receive their awards sometime this spring.
“I can be recognized,” Moggach said, “and I think kids are and their families are always looking for that. But I think before you do that you have to build the program, the program has to be something that's respectful and respected and competitive, and I think we accomplished that.”
Gordon St. John led Detroit Catholic Central and Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood to a combined eight Finals championships over 16 seasons, the last seven with the Shamrocks including five straight in Class A or Division 1 from 1999-2003.
DCC’s Class A championship in 1994 was the first of now 17 Finals titles, which rank second-most in MHSAA history. He built a 222-29-18 record (.859 winning percentage) over 10 seasons leading the Shamrocks through 2003-04, the last two seasons as co-head coach before then staying with the program as an assistant and helping the team to another Division 1 championship in 2005.
St. John’s championship at Cranbrook came in 1988 in Class B-C-D.
PHOTOS (Top) Retired Brighton hockey coach Paul Moggach, far right, stands alongside his players as they await to receive their medals after winning the 2018 Division 1 championship (Middle) Moggach stands with his former assistant and current Brighton head coach Kurt Kivisto. (Middle photo by Tim Robinson; St. John photo courtesy of the American Hockey Coaches Association.)