Incoming Wisconsin freshman Grant Besse has had a remarkable past few seasons. The Plymouth, Minn., native helped his high school to a state championship in 2012, scoring five goals for Benilde-St. Margaret's in the class AA title game. Besse carried that success over this past season, when he was named Minnesota's Mr. Hockey as the best senior player in the state.
Besse realized another dream Sunday, when he was selected by the Anaheim Ducks in the 5th round of the 2013 NHL Draft, No. 147 overall.
Speechless, dream come true! thanks to everybody who helped me get to where I am today, proud to be apart of the Anaheim Ducks organization— Grant Besse (@G_Besse12) July 1, 2013
The 5-foot-10, 185-pound winger will go down as one of the most decorated high school players in Minnesota history. Besse registered 48 goals and 28 assists for 76 points as a senior. Besse's 163 career goals rank fifth all-time in state history, and his 272 points rank him seventh.
The Ducks selected another Badger in last seasons NHL Draft, taking Nic Kerdiles in the second round of the 2012 draft in Pittsburgh. Kerdiles was one of the first people on Twitter to congratulate his new teammate.
Congrats @G_Besse12 on being drafted by the @AnaheimDucks. #badgers #nhldraft— Nic Kerdiles (@NicKerdiles) July 1, 2013
Besse wasn't the only Badger to be selected in the draft, however, as classmate Jedd Soleway also heard his named called at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., Sunday. The Phoenix Coyotes nabbed the big center from the Penticton Vees in the 7th round, No. 193 overall.
Having a hard time tweeting with amount of sweat my palms are producing. Excited to be a part of the Phoenix Coyotes! Thanks everybody!— Jedd Soleway (@Soleway) July 1, 2013
A native of Vernon, British Columbia, Soleway started last season in the BCHL with his hometown Vernon Vipers. Soleway was later traded to the Penticton Vees where he thrived as a top-line center between Minnesota recruit Louie Nanne and North Dakota recruit Wade Murphy.
The 6-foot-2, 208-pound Soleway finished the 2012-13 campaign with 24 goals and 57 points in 64 games.
Both Soleway and Besse were selected in their second seasons of draft eligibility.
149 Badgers have been selected all-time in the NHL Draft, while 76 UW alumni have skated in the NHL. With the selections of Besse and Soleway, 2013 marks the 16th consecutive season Wisconsin has had a player selected in the draft.
Congrats @Soleway and @G_Besse12 for being picked in the #nhldraft #badgerhockey #rocks— Jake McCabe (@McCabe19) July 1, 2013
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