Hobey Baker Watch: Week 18

Story posted February 6, 2020 in Sports, CommRadio by Jeremy Ganes

The calendar has officially turned to February, which means its now or never for the best players in college hockey to make their case to win the Hobey Baker Award. Let’s look at the top candidates who are looking to solidify their chances in the last few weeks of the regular season.

Jack Dugan, Providence

Dugan has made frequent appearances on this list throughout the season and is a strong favorite to win the Hobey Baker Award. Dugan’s 44 points in nine games has powered Providence to the No. 10 ranking in the USCHO poll, and he remains the top point-scorer for one of college hockey’s top 10 offenses. The rapport that Dugan has with teammate Tyce Thompson, another strong candidate for the award, has led to him becoming the best puck passer in the country with 35 assists. Dugan’s best game of the year came against American International on Jan. 9, when he assisted four goals, matching his career high set against Boston University back on Nov. 9.

Jordan Kawaguchi, North Dakota

The best player on the No. 1 team in the nation as of Feb. 6 is another top player in the Hobey Baker race. His team is riding a 21-3-3 record going into Week 18, and his mixture of scoring and smart passing has been a key factor in North Dakota putting together the best offense in the nation, which averages 4.19 goals per game. Kawaguchi has shown the ability to put quality shots on net and convert them with 15 goals. He’s also an excellent facilitator for his teammates, recording 26 assists. Kawaguchi has only come on stronger as the season has progressed, totaling six multi-point games since the start of the new year.

Julius Mattila, Boston College

The fourth-ranked Eagles boast one of the best players in college hockey in Julius Mattila, and he is a big reason that Boston College has a top-five offense. Mattila’s growth over his four years with the program has been fun to see, and it has amounted to him having a sensational senior season. Mattila’s passing has taken a huge leap in 2019-2020, as he already has a career best 26 assists, and there are several weekends of regular season hockey left for him to continue to improve that number. His previous high was 14 assists. That number will be long forgotten with the final year Mattila is having.

 

Jeremy Ganes is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email jlg6097@psu.edu.