All-CCHA performer: Northern Michigan University senior hockey player Andre Ghantous named to Second Team

Northern Michigan University's Andre Ghantous approaches Bemidji State goaltender Mattias Sholl before scoring during their CCHA playoff game at the Berry Events Center in Marquette on March 3. (Photo courtesy Ron Mattson)

MARQUETTE — Northern Michigan University forward Andre Ghantous was named to the All-CCHA Second Team, the college hockey league announced on Tuesday.

After three NMU freshmen — Beni Halasz, Joey Larson and Josh Zinger — made the CCHA Rookie Team on Monday, Ghantous was the lone player to make the “regular” all-league teams a day later.

The senior from Glendale, California, ended his regular season on a tear, which has continued into the Wildcats’ successful run into the CCHA Mason Cup playoffs.

No. 4-seeded NMU plays for the playoff championship at 7:07 p.m. EDT Saturday at No. 1 Minnesota State-Mankato, with an automatic berth into the NCAA Division I tournament and the Mason Cup on the line. The trophy is named for legendary Lake Superior State, Bowling Green State and Michigan State coach Ron Mason.

Ghantous has become the leading offensive producer in Northern’s current seven-game winning streak, which included its final two regular-season series and three playoff games.

Northern Michigan University senior forward Andre Ghantous strides while moving on the Berry Events Center rink in Marquette during a Wildcats' game in the 2022-23 season. (Photo courtesy NMU)

In that string dating back to Feb. 17, he is tied for first in all of NCAA Division I with four power play goals, tied for third in points with 13 and tied for sixth in goals with seven.

In all of Northern’s 37 games this season, he leads the Wildcats with 25 assists and 38 points while tied for second with 13 goals. He has a

plus-minus rating of plus-4 with five power play goals, 76 shots and 17 blocked shots.

For 26 regular-season CCHA games, Ghantous finished with nine goals and 17 assists for 26 points, amassing a plus-2 rating with four power play goals and a game winner.

Putting together 52 shots, he was second in the CCHA with seven multipoint games, third in points and points per game, and sixth in assists and assists per game. And he was the only player with two multigoal games.

The league’s Second Team included six players from six teams, which also comprised defensemen Brett Thorne of Michigan Tech and Akito Hirose of Minnesota State, forwards Louis Boudon of Lake Superior State and Nathan Burke of Bowling Green State, and goaltender Mattias Sholl of Bemidji State.

Thorne had 14 points, all on assists, and a plus-13 rating; Hirose 17 points that included two goals and plus-9 rating; Boudon six goals and 16 points; Burke 15 goals and 24 points and plus-6 rating; while Sholl was 10-10-3 with a 2.21 goals against average and .910 saves percentage with one shutout.

MTU and Mankato each had two players make the First Team, also announced Tuesday. They included Tech goalie Blake Pietila and forward Ryland Mosley and Mankato defenseman Jake Livingstone and forward David Silye.

The other First Teamers were forward Austin Swankler of Bowling Green and defenseman Elias Rosen of Bemidji.

Pietila, a senior, was 14-7-3 with a 2.02 GAA and .929 saves percentage, leading the league in wins and saves percentage, along with topping the CCHA with six shutouts and finishing second in GAA and minutes played. He’s also a Richter Award finalist and the league’s lone top-10 finalist for the Hobey Baker Award.

Mosley had nine goals and 19 points with a plus-3 rating, along with three power play, two shorthanded and two game-winning goals.

Livingstone led all CCHA defensemen with 17 assists and 22 points, along with two game winners, a plus-9 rating and 28 blocked shots.

Silye had a league-leading 19 goals and second-most points with 29 to go with an even rating, 10 power play goals and one game-winner. He also had the league’s only hat trick and was second with 314 faceoff wins.

Swankler led the conference with 19 assists and 32 points, registering a point in 22 of 26 league games and having a national-best 19-game point streak. He had four power play and two game-winning goals with a plus-12 rating, along with seven multipoint games.

Rosen was second for defensemen with 21 points that included a tie for the most blueliner assists with 17. He had 39 blocked shots and five multipoint games.

League “special” awards were named Wednesday. Silye earned CCHA Forward of the Year, Pietila the CCHA Goaltender of the Year, Livingstone the CCHA Defenseman of the Year and MTU’s Kyle Kukkonen the CCHA Rookie of the Year.

Kukkonen played in all 38 of Tech’s games and led the Huskies with 18 goals, five power play goals and five game-winning goals. With nine assists, he had 27 points, second for MTU, with two shorthanded goals and a plus-5 rating. He led the CCHA in game winners and was third in shorthanded goals and total shots with 120, was fourth in goals and seventh in multipoint games with eight.

The league’s final awards were scheduled to be named today — CCHA Coach of the Year and CCHA Player of the Year.

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


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