Sponsored By
An organization or individual has paid for the creation of this work but did not approve or review it.



North Dakota’s leading scorer Rylee Bartz continues to pile up points for North-South

100-plus career goal scorer Rylee Bartz continues to make noise for Fargo North-South this season.

Fargo North-South junior Rylee Bartz is the state's leading scorer with 45 goals and 63 points through 18 games.
Alyssa Goelzer/Forum Communications Co.

FARGO — Rylee Bartz got her first pair of skates when she was around 2 years old, and hasn't been far from a rink since. She wanted to be like her brother, who is two years older than her.

“He’s the one that really got me into playing because I wanted to try to keep up,” Bartz said.

Bartz is now a junior and everyone is trying to keep up with her. She's the state's leading scorer with 45 goals and 63 points through 18 games for Fargo North-South.

Bartz, a forward, has 24 more goals than the No. 2 leading scorer and 24 more points than the next closest player, Morgan Sauvageau. Fargo Davies senior Sauvageau is second in points with 39 (17 goals, 22 assists).

Bartz was a defenseman until she was about 14. She transitioned to forward when she switched over to girls hockey in 15U after playing with boys her entire life. Bartz quickly developed into a dominant goal-scoring force.


Fargo North-South's Rylee Bartz leaps over the stick of West Fargo United's Layla Aune at the Fargo Coliseum on Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020.
David Samson/Forum Communications Co.

“When I started playing forward full time is when I developed a knack to put the puck in the net,” Bartz said. “I love it now.”

Bartz scored quite a few points in that first season of girls hockey and she hasn’t looked back. She led the state in both goals and points as a sophomore, finishing last season with 38 goals and 53 points. Bartz was fifth in points as a freshman, with 36 points on 19 goals and 17 assists.

“I'm excited, but it wouldn't have happened without the good coaching staff and the fantastic teammates that I have,” Bartz said of topping the scoring leaderboard.

Bartz worked on her speed, hands and shot during the offseason. That work has given her a harder shot and quicker release this season, which has been noticeable on the scoresheet — and to opposing goaltenders.

Bartz recorded her 100th career goal on Jan. 20 in a 3-2 win over East Grand Forks. She potted two goals in that game, including the milestone mark, which was the game-winner. Bartz has racked up 102 goals in 64 games through three seasons with the Spruins.

“It felt great,” Bartz said of the 100th career goal. “But ultimately, my goal at the end is to try to win the state championship with the Spruins.”

The Spruins (12-6-0) are second in the statewide standings with 34 points, two points ahead of third-place Bismarck. Bartz scored the game-winning goal last Saturday that lifted North-South to a 2-1 overtime win over Bismarck. Davies sits in first with 45 points.

“We started out a little rocky, but now we’re getting back to it and hopefully going to end on a high note,” said Bartz, who also plays volleyball and soccer at North.


Fargo North-South's Rylee Bartz, center, is congratulated for her goal against Fargo Davies during their girls hockey game Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021, at Scheels Arena.
Michael Vosburg/Forum Communications Co.

The Spruins lost some key pieces from last season’s team to graduation, including their second-leading scorer Abby Promersberger, who is playing Division I hockey at the University of St. Thomas. North-South has had some freshmen step up this year to fill the holes left in last year’s team that reached the state championship, Bartz said.

While Bartz boasts impressive individual achievements, she’s driven by her teammates, and a desire to win a state title. The Spruins have reached the state championship game in three of the last four seasons, coming up short each time. Davies edged North-South 3-2 in last year’s title game, in which Bartz score the equalizer.

“I hope that we can just finish out really strong,” Bartz said. “Play our game, and hopefully we do well.”

Bartz would like to play in college. She’s had a few Division I and Division III schools reach out.

Carissa Wigginton is a high school sports reporter for The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead. A Fargo native, she graduated from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Wigginton joined The Forum’s sports department in August 2019.