Northern Michigan University’s AJ Vanderbeck, Andre Ghantous nominated for college hockey’s top individual honor, the Hobey Baker Award

This photo illustration produced by Northern Michigan University Sports Information shows the Wildcats’ two nominees for college hockey’s Hobey Baker Award, A.J. Vanderbeck, left, and Andre Ghantous. (Illustration courtesy NMU)

MARQUETTE — The Northern Michigan University hockey team’s leading two scorers have been nominated for the Hobey Baker Award, college hockey’s highest individual honor.

Senior AJ Vanderbeck and Andre Ghantous are among 82 skaters representing 43 NCAA Division I schools, including all 10 in the CCHA.

Award criteria include candidates exhibiting the exceptional character traits of the award’s namesake, Hobey Baker. A legendary American hero, Baker was a World War I fighter pilot and was known as America’s greatest amateur athlete in his day, excelling at hockey and football at Princeton University.

An award candidate must demonstrate strength of character both on and off the ice, contribute to the integrity of his team and display outstanding skills in all phases of the game. Consideration should be given to scholastic achievement and sportsmanship.

Fans can take part in the voting once per day by visiting the website https://hobeybaker.com/awards/vote-for-hobey/.

Fan voting takes place through Sunday, March 5, at midnight. The top 10 list of finalists will be announced on March 15 with further voting available from March 17-26.

Then the “Hobey Hat Trick” of three finalists will be announced on March 30 with the award winner named on April 7.

Vanderbeck is the Wildcats’ captain this season and shares the team lead in goals with 12, is second in assists with 15 and leads the team in points with 27.

His points and points per game are second in the CCHA with his goals per game fifth and assists per game seventh.

He was also tied for 23rd nationally in points entering last weekend, while he led NCAA Division I in shots on goal with 103, was tied for first in shorthanded goals with three and was two shy of the lead in game-winning goals as he has three.

Vanderbeck was named CCHA Forward of the Month for October, when he also won a CCHA Forward of the Week award. In October, he led the league in goals with six, points with 13, points per game with 1.44, multipoint games with four, game-winning goals with two, shorthanded goals with one, shots with 52 and shots per game with 5.78.

Ghantous leads NMU in assists with 18 and is second in points with 22. In the CCHA, he’s tied for second in assists and assists per game and fifth in points per game.

His assist total entering last weekend ranked him 17th in Division I.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.


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