Acceleration has always been a critical part of Schroeder's game on and off the ice. A speedy if undersized forward, the 5-foot-9 native of Burnsville, Minn., always seemed to be moving ahead of other players toward an NHL career.
From playing with older kids before he could barely tie his skates, to finishing high school early so he could enroll at the University of Minnesota, to being the youngest player and leading scorer for the United States at the 2008 World Junior Championship, Schroeder moved quickly up the hockey ladder. After scoring 62 points in 31 games as a ninth-grader to help lead St. Thomas Academy to a state championship in high school, Schroeder, at age 15, moved on to USA Hockey's National Team Development Program for two seasons. In 2007-08, his second season there, Schroeder led the Under-18 team with 53 points in 55 games.