NCAA Men Top Performers
A compilation of the previous week’s top performing players representing Minnesota or the state’s various schools as recognized by their respective conferences.Week of Nov. 17 – 23, 2014
Western Collegiate Hockey Association
WCHA Men’s Defensive Player of the Week
Stephon Williams – Junior, Goaltender (Fairbanks, Alaska)
Minnesota State University
Williams backstopped Minnesota State to a road sweep at No. 1 Michigan Tech, recording 55 saves on 58 shots (.948 save percentage) with a 1.50 goals against average. The junior from Fairbanks, Alaska stopped 30 of 31 shots (including holding Tech scoreless on three power plays) in Friday night’s 2-1 win. He then made 25 saves on 27 shots in the series finale, a 3-2 victory that gave the Mavericks their first-ever sweep of a top-ranked opponent. The New York Islanders’ draft pick ranks second nationally with a .900 winning percentage (9-1-0), while posting a .915 save percentage and 1.85 goals against average.
National Collegiate Hockey Conference
NCHC Rookie of the Week
Tyler Vesel – Freshman, Forward (Rochester, Minn.)
University of Nebraska-Omaha
Vesel tallied three points in a split with No. 8/8 Minnesota Duluth. Friday he handed out the primary assist on a power play goal in a 3-2 loss. The next night, he scored Omaha’s first goal of the game to tie the contest and had the primary assist on UNO’s next goal later in the first period, which turned out to be the game-winner in a 4-1 victory. Vesel was named the game’s third star Saturday when he had a +2 rating. The Oilers prospect finished with a +2 rating on the weekend, blocked five shots and put three shots on goal.
HEA Rookie of the Week
Spencer Naas – Freshman, Forward (Minnetonka, Minn.)
University of Connecticut
Naas helped the UConn Huskies clinch a 2-1 victory over No. 11 Vermont when he tipped home a shot midway through the second period. It marked the third Husky victory over a ranked opponent this year. Naas is currently third on the team with six points (3g, 3a) on the season.
HEA Top Performer(s)
Jared Kolquist – Freshman, Defenseman (Hermantown, Minn.)
Notched first two collegiate goals, including a game-winning goal, Friday at Northeastern.
ECAC Men’s Hockey co-Goaltender of the Week
Steve Michalek – Senior, Goaltender (Glastonbury, Conn.)
Michalek, a Minnesota Wild prospect, earned his second shutout this year in a 2-0 win at Dartmouth and then allowed just one-goal, on a 5-on-3, in a 5-1 defeat of Bentley Friday. The shutout at Dartmouth was the first for the Crimson since Jan. 10, 1953. He boasts an overall record of 5-1-2 on the season with a .951 save percentage and 1.47 goals-against average.
Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
MIAC Men’s Hockey Athlete-of-the-Week
Charlie Adams – Junior, Forward (Mahtomedi, Minn.)
The Hamline men’s hockey team picked up two points in a hard-fought MIAC home-and-home series with Gustavus over the weekend, with junior forward Charlie Adams (Mahtomedi, Minn.) leading the Pipers to a pair of overtime ties against last year’s conference runner-up. Adams had a three-point weekend (two goals, assist) and a plus-two rating in the two games to help Hamline avoid a loss in its first MIAC series of the season. For his performance, the MIAC sports information directors honored Adams Monday with the MIAC Men’s Hockey Athlete-of-the-Week award.
Adams was especially brilliant in Friday’s showdown on Hamline’s home ice, as he tallied the game’s first goal, then scored again in the second period to give the Pipers a 3-1 lead. However, Gustavus came back to tie the game and eventually score a 2-1 win in the shootout. Adams picked up another point a day later, as he assisted on Hamline’s first goal in a 2-2 tie that saw the Gusties pick up another point in the shootout (2-1). This season, Adams has five points on two goals and three assists.
Compiled from weekly conference releases.