Bowling Green men’s hockey coach Chris Bergeron found his own version of the “Bash Brothers” from the popular "The Mighty Ducks" film series, in brothers Lukas and Sam Craggs.
Lukas, a junior, and Sam, a sophomore, hail from Elmhurst, Illinois. They were born with hockey in their blood as their father Bill played college hockey for NCAA DIII St. Mary’s University in Minnesota.
This made it an easy decision for their mother to sign the boys up for skating when they each were three years old.
With the boys only being one year apart, the best decision early in their career was for Sam to play a year up. This meant he was playing with boys Lukas’ age, but once they started to physically mature, they split off individually.
This was not the end of their time playing together, as the brothers would each go on to be selected in the USHL draft by the Youngstown Phantoms. After their time with the Phantoms, they each had a college decision to make.
“Barry Schutte gave me a nice phone call,” Lukas Craggs said. “I came out and visited, liked what I saw and I commited instantly. They were the first school to talk to me, and I rolled with it and loved it.”
The decision was not as easy for his brother Sam, but he too, would decide to don the orange and brown for four years.
“I had a few schools talk to me first, but BG was very consistent, and they talked to me. When I came out to visit, I liked it. Also, (Lukas) was coming here, so that was a plus.”
The brothers have a chemistry that cannot be taught by a coach. Sam still had to ask his brother for permission before accepting the offer to Bowling Green, he said, while laughing to his brother.
With the brothers deciding to lace up together, it made travel plans easier for their family.
“The family aspect is big. My brother and parents can come out and watch us play,” Lukas Craggs said.
A strength the brothers have is their willingness to play the body.
“Obviously when we are playing together, we are beating people up, so it’s fun. Bringing a little physical play, it shuts the opponent down. They don’t want it, and I’m happy to do it,” Lukas said.
He led the Falcons last year with 109 penalty minutes and already has 42 so far this season, less than a quarter of the way through the season. As a freshman last year, Sam, also sat in the sin bin his fair amount, collecting 36 minutes.
Lukas was not always the physical player Falcon fans watch today. He admitted he was kind of small once he was old enough to hit in hockey. It took him a while to work on his trade.
The brothers are not only known for their defensive skills; their offense has earned the Falcons points too. Lukas is one of the Falcons’ top scorers this season with 7 points in eight games after tallying 19 last year. Sam scored 9 as a freshman and is off to good start this season, with 3 quick points.
They share the same favorite moment as a Falcon: winning the GLI Championship. The boys won the hardware in Detroit, where they topped the Michigan Wolverines, the eventual national championship runner-up.
The young men are grateful for their Bowling Green fans.
“The fans are everything. When you go out on the ice and hear the roar, it’s a special feeling. I love to see the fans in the stands,” Sam said.
Lukas agreed with his brother.
“BGSU hockey fans, we’re loving the support right now; we want to keep that up. There’s more to come. We have a special group. We’re working on something special this year, so expect a deep run and nothing less. We are shooting for it all this year,” he said.