Thursday, March 12, 2015

WCHA awards: Hastings named top coach

For the second time in three years, Mike Hastings was named WCHA coach of the year, this time after the Mavericks won the MacNaughton Cup as the league’s regular-season champions for the first time.

The Mavericks won no other individual awards but had six players named to all WCHA teams.

Forward Matt Leitner and defenseman Zach Palmquist, both seniors, were named first-team all league players for the second year in a row.

Second-team picks included juniors forward Bryce Gervais and goalie Stephon Williams and sophomore defenseman Casey Nelson.

Freshman forward C.J. Franklin was named to the all-rookie team.

Leitner led the WCHA in assists this season, and Geravis was the conference’s leading goal scorer. Williams won the goaltending title with the lowest goals-against average. Nelson and Palmquist finished 1-2 among defensemen in league scoring. Franklin was the league’s second-leading rookie scorer.

Here is the full list of awards:

Player of the year: Tanner Kero, senior F, Michigan Tech

Student-athlete of the year: Kero

Defensive player of the year: Colton Parayko, junior D, Alaska

Rookie of the year: Michael Bitzer, freshman G, Bemidji State

Coach of the year: Mike Hastings, Minnesota State

All-WCHA first team: Forwards—Tanner Kero, MTU; Matt Leitner, MSU; Tyler Morley, UAF. Defensemen: Colton Parayko, UAF; Zach Palmquist, MSU. Goalie—Jamie Phillips, MTU.

All-WCHA second team: Forwards—Bryce Gervais, MSU; Alex Petan, MTU; Malcolm Gould, MTU. Defensemen—Matt Prapavessis, BSU; Casey Nelson, MSU. Goalie—Stephon Williams, MSU.

All-WCHA third team: Forwards—Blake Pietila, MTU; Marcus Basara, UAF; Brendan Harms, BSU. Defensemen—Shane Hanna, MTU; Brock Maschmeyer, NMU. Goalie: C.J. Motte, FSU

All-WCHA rookie team: Forwards—Brandon Hawkins, BG; C.J. Franklin, MSU; Max McHugh, UAH. Defensemen—Mark Friedman, BG; Nolan Valleau, BG. Goalie—Michael Bitzer, BSU.

Fifteen MSU players were named to the WCHA’s all-academic team. They include: Teddy Blueger, Nick Buchanan, Sean Flanagan, Max Gaede, Chase Grant, Cole Huggins, Michael Huntebrinker, Jon Jutzi, Dylan Margonari, Casey Nelson, Jordan Nelson, Zach Palmquist, Zach Stepan, Brett Stern and Stephon Williams.

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