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CCHA Awards

Player of the year – Reilly Smith, Miami

It came down to Smith and Torey Krug, but Smith was incredibly impressive this year. Although he scored a boatload of goals last year there were whispers that it was mostly due to playing on a line with Andy Miele. This year he proved it was no fluke (and that maybe he was the driving force on that line last year) by scoring 18 goals in CCHA play, 5 more than anyone else in the league. Miami was 5th in the league in scoring, so you know just how important Smith was to that team as well.

Coach of the Year – Bob Daniels, Ferris State

Halfway through the year, Ohio State’s Mark Osiecki seemed to have a stranglehold on this award, but after finishing 5th last year Ferris State went on a 13 game unbeaten streak before losing their last game of the season to win the CCHA regular season title. Ferris has been a really balanced team all year, with just two scorers in double figures, and they came virtually out of nowhere to win the league and reach the national title game. Read more…

Categories: Awards, CCHA

College Hockey National Awards

Player of the year – Austin Smith, Colgate

Smith had 36 goals this year to lead the nation, and they were just 5 fewer than the other two Hobey hat trick finalists combined. Smith scored 25 goals in conference play, 12 more than the next highest total. To contrast, the other leading scorers won their league scoring titles by 5, 3, 2 and 1. Smith also had under 20% of his goals come on the power play and, though I am not a fan of crediting players for context, had an equal number of game winning and game tying goals as he did power play tallies. Smith helped drag a Colgate team picked to finish near the bottom in ECAC Hockey to a fourth place finish in the league, and to top it all off Smith was one of the better forwards in the country at playing in his own end as well.

Coach of the year – Norm Bazin, UMass-Lowell

Bob Daniels was very close, as he helped lead Ferris State all the way to the title game in their first Frozen Four appearance. But Bazin led Lowell to 24 wins and a second place finish in Hockey East after a last place finish and just 5 wins last season. Lowell had seven players who scored 10 or more goals in 2011-12 after having four the year before. Read more…

Categories: Awards

Congrats To Matt Gilroy

April 11, 2009 1 comment

Gilroy, soon to be a very rich man and perhaps a national champion, won the 2009 Hobey Baker Award last night, besting teammate Colin Wilson and Northeastern Goalie Brad Thiessen. Gilroy had 8 goals and 28 assists on the season and his .82 points per game ranked 11th among defensemen this year. Gilroy also played very well in his defensive end this year for the Terriers, who were the 3rd best defensive team in the country this year.Gilroy is the first defenseman to win the Hobey since Denver’s Matt Carle.

Although I had Gilroy 2nd on my personal ballot behind his teammate Colin Wilson there is no doubt he is a deserving Hobey winner.

One final note, remember to watch the national championship game tonight (as if you guys didn’t know). My prediction: BU wins a tight 3-2 battle.

Categories: Awards, Hobey

The College Hockey Blog National Awards

April 5, 2009 3 comments

Let’s jump right into it. The College Hockey Blog is happy to award our first ever national player of the year award to Air Force’s Jacques Lamoureux. The Sophomore from Grand Forks, North Dakota led college hockey with 33 goals, and he added 20 assists for  Air Force, which won Atlantic Hockey for a 3rd straight year and won a game in the NCAA Tournament for the first time. Lamoureux’s 53 points ranked 2nd only to Brian Leitch of Quinnipiac.

Lamoureux won our player of the year award by a healthy margin over the next closest candidate, Colin Wilson of BU.

Our coach of the year award was a bit tougher to figure. For the finalists, I used the same as the Penrose Award finalists. Those are:

Keith Allain, Yale
Enrico Blasi, Miami
Greg Cronin, Northeastern
Dallas Ferguson, Alaska
Dave Hakstol, North Dakota
Jack Parker, Boston University
Tom Serratore, Bemidji State
Kevin Sneddon, Vermont
Ryan Soderquist, Bentley

For starters, let’s toss out a couple that don’t belong right away. Bentley was a good team, but a top 4 Atlantic Hockey finish doesn’t scream COY to me. Alaska had a good season, but they were 54th nationally in offense. That’s not good coaching, it’s great goaltending by Chad Johnson. Jack Parker took the most talented team in the country to the Frozen Four. That’s what you’re supposed to do. And Tom Serratore built his candidacy on 2 games. So those guys are out.

Out of the remainders (Enrico Blasi, Keith Allain, Greg Cronin, Dave Hakstol and Kevin Sneddon) I’ll narrow it down to Hakstol and Sneddon. Although regular season accomplishments carry tremendous weight with me, and North Dakota didn’t have the talent this year they have in past years, Vermont having their season in a tougher conference plus making a Frozen Four gives our first ever coach of the year award to Kevin Sneddon.

Finally, our national freshman of the year was a no brainer. Minnesota’s Jordan Schroeder led all Freshmen with 45 points, even while missing some time while being away at the World Junior Championships in Ottawa. Schroeder’s talent has propelled him into being almost a guaranteed Top 10 pick in this summer’s NHL entry draft.

Our first, second and third team All-American teams are after the jump. Read more…

Categories: Awards

Hockey East Awards

April 1, 2009 1 comment

While the carnage in the post two below this one is going on, hopefully some stragglers will offer their opinions on the Hockey East awards. Hockey East is the only conference this year with two teams in the Frozen Four, and top to bottom it has been the deepest and best conference all season. Last year’s national champion lost one contributor, a key one to be sure, but went from national champs to out of the NCAA Tournament.

Northeastern led Hockey East for much of the season, before being overtaken by Boston University, who also added a Hockey East tournament title and a Beanpot title, on the last weekend of the season.

So as you can imagine, coming up with a coach of the year was mildly difficult in the least. Was it Greg Cronin, who led the Huskies to 2nd place and 2nd place in the Beanpot? Was it Blaise MacDonald, who took UMass-Lowell from afterthought to the conference title game? Or was it Jack Parker, whose BU team dominated college hockey all season long.

Our Hockey East coach of the year is none of those, but rather Vermont’s Kevin Sneddon. Sneddon led Vermont to a 3rd place tie in Hockey East, and his Catamounts will be competing in the Frozen Four next weekend in Washington, DC. Vermont has gone 22-11-5 so far this season, a 5 win increase from last season’s 17-15-7 mark.

The player of the year award was similarly difficult to nail down, as we were  back and forth between Northeastern’s Brad Thiessen and BU’s Matt Gilroy. But we decided to go a completely different direction, tabbing Boston University’s Colin Wilson. The future Nashville Predator has 52 points so far this season for the best team in hockey, and also played a huge role on the United States team at the World Juniors. Wilson led Hockey East in points per game with 1.27, and was tied for 9th with 15 goals. The most impossible to put together first team is after the jump, along with the second team. Read more…

Categories: Awards, Hockey East

ECAC Awards

March 30, 2009 Leave a comment

Time to rev the awards engine back to full speed. Today, we head East to ECAC hockey. In what was a very good year for the league, Yale, Cornell and Princeton all made the NCAA Tournament, and St. Lawrence just missed by the skin of their teeth. In the preseason we ranked both Princeton and Cornell, but totally missed the boat on Yale (who didn’t?) and St. Lawrence.

Getting the easiest award out of the way right away, our ECAC coach of the year is Yale’s Keith Allain. Allain led the Bulldogs to the ECAC regular season and tournament titles, with a record of 24-8-2 (15-5-2 in conference). They were the highest scoring team in ECAC hockey at 3.32 goals pergame, and 9th nationally in that department. The Bulldogs also had the nation’s best penalty kill, a testament to Coach Allain’s ability to teach them discipline and fundamentals.

Our player of the year award was a bit more difficult. At midseason it looked like Ben Scrivens had it on lockdown, but Zane Kalemba took him over. The Princeton goalie had a .932 save percentage to lead the conference in that department. But our conference player of the year is Colgate’s David McIntyre. The Junior was 2nd in the conference in goals and 3rd in points, while playing less games than the top two players in those departments. McIntyre had 21 goals on a team that scored just 89 on the season. That is nearly 25% of the goal scoring. And McIntyre had 43 points, meaning he had a hand in nearly half of his teams goals. That is value. The rest of the first team and the second team are after the jump Read more…

Categories: Awards, ECAC Hockey

Hobey Candidates Announced

March 20, 2009 Leave a comment

They can be found here

My thoughts…

3 Goalies. Johnson, Kalemba and Thiessen have all been fantastic. Kalemba has the best numbers, Thiessen plays for the best team, but it was Johnson that led a team with 1, yes you read that correctly, 1 10 goal scorer to a top 4 CCHA finish.

WCHA only gets one candidate. I would have thought Ryan Stoa would get in the top 10 as well when you look at the type of season he has had.

Jacques Lamoureux, in my mind, deserves to be a Hobey hat trick finalist. Especially when you add in the personal problems he’s overcome.

Colin Wilson doesn’t have the best stats, but I think he’s the best player in the country.

Love seeing David McIntyre in there. Colgate was under .500, but McIntyre had 43 points, which is a 4th of the teams total, and had a +/- of +18. For an under .500 team. Unbelievable.

I’ll have more thoughts on the Hobey as we near the announcement of the winner, and starting Monday I’ll finish the conference awards.

Categories: Awards, Hobey