Hobey Watch: 1/6/2011

Now that the holiday tournaments are over, it’s time for the stretch run of conference play. It’s also time for the stretch run of the Hobey race. Time for the guys who have been on this list to show that they deserve to stay, and time for the big names who fell off it in the first half to fight their way back on.

Without further ado, here is this week’s list.

10. Denny Urban, Senior D, Robert Morris – Usually, at least one Atlantic Hockey player makes the list of 10 finalists (not last year, though). Urban is the best candidate from that league right now. He leads all defensemen with 1.32 points per game and is tied for 15th overall with 25 points (7g, 18a). He had a seven-game point streak snapped last Thursday in a 4-3 loss to RIT.

9. Jack Connolly, Junior F, Minnesota-Duluth – The No. 5 Bulldogs responded from a 5-0 demolition at the hands of No. 2 North Dakota by sweeping Clarkson on Monday and Tuesday. Connolly led the charge with a goal and four assists in the series and he now ranks third in the country with 30 points (9g, 21a). Connolly is only 13th in points per game, though, with a still very impressive 1.43.

8. Allen York, Junior G, Rensselaer – York (10-4-3) started the second semester by picking up right where he left off, saving 34 of the 36 shots he faced in a pair of 2-1 wins at Alabama-Huntsville. He has helped lead the No. 9/10 Engineers to a top-10 ranking and he’s now second nationally in goals-against average (1.74) and sixth in save percentage (.931).

7. Cam Atkinson, Junior F, Boston College – Atkinson got off to a mediocre (for him) start, registering just 12 points in his first 11 games, but he’s been on fire lately, tallying seven goals and seven assists in his last seven games. That includes a goal and four assists last week when he helped lead the No. 3 Eagles to the Ledyard National Bank Classic title. He’s now tied for third nationally in goals (15) and eighth in points (26).

6. Chay Genoway, Senior D, North Dakota – Like Atkinson, Genoway was another preseason Hobey favorite who got off to a bit of a slow start, probably due at least in part to the fact he was returning from post-concussion syndrome. But he’s also back in full force now, as he’s riding a seven-game point streak, most recently notching an assist in the Fighting Sioux’s blowout win against Minnesota-Duluth.

5. Andy Miele, Senior F, Miami – In perhaps the most notable lineup change of the break, Miami coach Enrico Blasi decided to split up Miele and Carter Camper. It will be interesting to see how the move affects their point production and Hobey chances. However, Miele started anew with a pair of goals in the Florida College Classic, where the No. 7/8 RedHawks beat No. 9/11 Maine and lost to St. Cloud State.

4. Jack Maclellan, Junior F, Brown – Maclellan opened the second half with two goals and an assist in the Shillelagh Tournament, where the Bears pounded No. 14/15 Boston University before losing to Minnesota State in the title game. He’s now tied for second in the nation in points per game (1.77) and is fourth in goals per game (0.85). It’ll be tough for him to make the Hat Trick if Brown doesn’t reach the NCAAs, though.

The Hat Trick

3. John Muse, Senior G, Boston College – Muse (12-3-0) started the second half with a sub-par performance against Colgate, giving up five goals on 34 shots, but he rebounded the next night by saving 30 of the 31 shots he faced against Mercyhurst. Muse now ranks third in save percentage (.934), fourth in winning percentage (.800) and eighth in GAA (2.02), and he’s tied for second in wins (12).

2. Broc Little, Senior F, Yale – Little had a decent start to the second semester. All he did was register a hat trick and an assist as the No. 1 Bulldogs trampled Holy Cross 10-3. He’s now first in goals per game (0.92) and tied for second in points per game (1.77). The biggest hurdle for Little’s candidacy might be his own teammates – three other Bulldogs rank in the top 10 in points per game – but the fact that he’s four clear of any of them in goals should help.

1. Carter Camper, Senior F, Miami – Will Camper be able to maintain his absurd scoring pace without Miele on his line? It slowed a bit last week when he only had two assists down in Florida, but that was enough to hang onto the top spot for now. Camper still leads the nation in points (37), assists (24) and points per game (1.85). He’s also riding a seven-game point streak.

On the bubble: Matt Frattin (Senior F, North Dakota), Brian O’Neill (Junior F, Yale), Paul Thompson (Senior F, New Hampshire), Justin Schultz (Sophomore D, Wisconsin), Pat Nagle (Senior G, Ferris State)

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