UST's Williams, Boeser lead 2016-7 MIAC Men's Hockey Awards

UST's Williams, Boeser lead 2016-7 MIAC Men's Hockey Awards

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. – The University of St. Thomas enjoyed a memorable season on the ice in 2016-17, so it was no surprise when, Tuesday, the Tommies swept the top individual honors with the announcement of the 2016-17 Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Men's Hockey Awards.

UST's Thomas Williams (Alexandria, Minn.) took home the conference's top honor as the senior forward was named the 2016-17 MIAC Men's Hockey Player-of-the-Year. St. Thomas was honored further as Williams' coach, Jeff Boeser, was voted 2016-17 MIAC Men's Hockey Coach-of-the-Year by his peers. The MIAC also announced All-Conference, All-Conference Honorable Mention, All-Rookie and All-MIAC Sportsmanship Teams. All awards were nominated and voted on by the MIAC's nine head coaches.

Williams did it all for the Tommies en route to their conference championship to result in his well-deserved Player-of-the-Year selection. The St. Thomas forward and captain had an outstanding senior campaign in the MIAC, as he led the league with 22 points in conference games, ranked fifth in assists (13) and sixth in goals scored (nine). He finished with a plus-8 rating while he was on the ice in MIAC play, scored three power-play goals and contributed a pair of game-winning goals.

Overall, Williams tallied 24 points to rank ninith in the MIAC in scoring, with 10 goals and 14 assists to also rank in the top 11 in those categories. He finished with a plus-7 rating overall. In addition to his Player-of-the-Year award, Williams was named to the MIAC All-Conference team – his first conference honor since earning All-Rookie Team honors in 2013-14. Boeser described Williams as, "The heart and soul of our hockey team … [he] has the biggest heart of any player I ever coached."

For his role in the Tommies' success, Boeser received the third MIAC Coach-of-the-Year award in his seven-year career leading UST. He was also named the conference's Coach-of-the-Year following the 2011-12 season, and the 2013-14 campaign. This season, he helped St. Thomas win its fifth MIAC championship in the last six seasons, and the program's 31st overall conference crown.

Boeser's Tommies finished 14-8-5 overall and 11-3-2 in conference play with 33 points, as they claimed the conference title on the season's final day. St. Thomas was the No. 1 seed in the MIAC Playoffs, where it reached the championship game and narrowly missed adding another title in a 3-2 loss to Augsburg. This year Boeser coached Williams to Player-of-the-Year honors and guided UST players to five All-Conference nods and another two student-ahtletes to All-Rookie Team accolades.

In addition to Player-of-the-Year Williams, the MIAC All-Conference team was headlined by a trio of players who received All-MIAC honors for the third-straight season. Saint Mary's senior forwards Martin Gruse and Bob Kinne and Augsburg senior forward Corbin Chapman each capped their careers with third-straight All-Conference honors. Augsburg's Nate Flynn and Rory Vesel, Hamline's Mitch Hall, and St. Thomas' Johnny Roisum were all repeat All-Conference seletions as well this season.

The MIAC-champion Tommies were well-represented on the All-Conference Team with five players recognized. Hamline had four All-MIAC selections, Augsburg and Concordia had three each, Saint Mary's and Saint John's each had two players honored and St. Olaf had one selection. The team was certainly senior-laden, with 10 seniors on the 20-player team to go along with five juniors, three sophomores and two freshmen. 

As part of a conference-wide sportsmanship initiative, the MIAC also announced the 11th annual All-MIAC Sportsmanship team for men's hockey. Members of the All-MIAC Sportsmanship team are selected by their coaches and teammates as individuals who demonstrate ideals of positive sportsmanship both on and off the field of competition.

2016-17 MIAC Men's Hockey Awards

Player-of-the-Year - Thomas Williams, St. Thomas (Sr., Forward, Alexandria, Minn.)
Coach-of-the-Year - Jeff Boeser (7th season)

2016-17 MIAC Men's Hockey All-Conference Team

Name Team Year    Position Hometown/High School
Corbin Chapman      Augsburg Sr.          Forward       Burnsville, Minn.
Michael Dockry St. Thomas Sr. Forward Burnsville, Minn.
Nate Flynn Augsburg Jr. Forward Hastings, Minn.
Jon Grebosky Concordia Jr. Forward Oakdale, Pa. / West Allegheny
Martin Gruse Saint Mary's         Sr.  Forward Trenton, Mich.
Mitch Hall Hamline So. Defense St. Cloud, Minn. / Tech
D.J. Jones St. Thomas Sr.  Defense Plymouth, Minn. / Wayzata
Russ Jordan Hamline Jr.  Forward Aurora, Ill. / Wauhonsi Valley 
Bob Kinne Saint Mary's Sr. Forward St. Paul, Minn. / Cretin-Derham Hall      
Jordan Krebsbach           Concordia Sr.  Defense Virginia, Minn. 
Mitch McPherson Hamline So.  Forward Peoria, Ill. / Richwoods 
Benjamin Myers St. Thomas So.  Goalie Milwaukee, Wis. / University School 
Sam Nelson Concordia Fr.  Goalie Eau Claire, Wis. / Regis 
Drew Otto St. Olaf Jr.  Forward Menomonie, Wis.
Johnny Roisum St. Thomas Sr. Defense Bloomington, Minn. / Jefferson
Cole Souto Saint John's Fr.  Defense Yorba Linda, Calif. / La Entrada 
Sam Valerius Saint John's Jr.  Forward Maple Grove, Minn. 
Rory Vesel Augsburg Sr. Defense Rochester, Minn. / Lourdes
Brandon Wahlin Hamline Sr.  Forward White Bear Lake, Minn. 
Thomas Williams St. Thomas Sr.  Forward Alexandria, Minn. 

2016-17 MIAC Men's Hockey All-Rookie Team

Name Team Year    Position   Hometown/High School       
Quinn Fuchs  Concordia  Fr.          Forward Moorhead, Minn. / Minot
Brett Gravelle  St. Thomas  Fr.  Forward      Forest Lake, Minn.
Brady Heppner  Saint John's  Fr.  Forward Crookston, Minn.
Kyle Meeh  Saint Mary's         Fr.  Defense Fenton, Mo.
Sam Nelson  Concordia  Fr.  Goalie Eau Claire, Wis. / Regis 
Johnny Panvica         St. Thomas Fr.  Forward Bloomington, Minn. / Jefferson
Cole Souto Saint John's Fr. Defense Yorba Linda, Calif. / La Entrada        

2016-17 MIAC Men's Hockey All-Conference Honorable Mention

Name Team Year    Position Hometown/High School
Justin Bonanno Bethel Jr.           Forward Colbert, Wash. / Marysville 
Michael Bond Bethel Sr.  Defense Fargo, N.D. / Austin 
Garrett Hendrickson        Concordia Sr.  Forward        Virginia, Minn. 
Jude Hull St. Olaf Jr.  Goalie Stillwater, Minn. / Mounds Park Academy 
Jeremy Johnson Concordia Sr.  Forward West Fargo, N.D. 
Jesse Kessler Hamline Jr. Defense Nashville, Tenn.
Kyle Meeh Saint Mary's        Fr. Defense Fenton, Mo. 
Justin Quale Hamline So.  Goalie Hopkins, Minn. / Benilde-St. Margaret's 
Huba Sekesi Saint John's Jr.  Forward Germering, Germany / Carl-Spitzweg-Gymnasium        
Nick Schmit Augsburg So.  Goalie Fargo, N.D. / North 
Steven Sherman St. Olaf Sr.  Forward San Diego, Calif. / Scripps Ranch 

2016-17 Men's Hockey All-MIAC Sportsmanship Team

Augsburg – Max Pernhem (Jr., Stockholm, Sweden / Dragonskolan)
Bethel – Al Nejmeh (Jr., Lancaster, Penn. / Taft)
Concordia – Mark Huneke (Jr., Hastings, Minn.)
Gustavus – Joe Lindberg (Sr., Excelsior, Minn. / Minnetonka)
Hamline – Dan Bartkowiak (Sr., Verona, Wis.)
Saint John's – Daniel Tripicchio (Sr., Hudson, Wis.)
Saint Mary's – Kelvin Walz (Jr., Woodbury, Minn.)
St. Olaf – Drew Otto (Jr., Menomonie, Wis.)
St. Thomas – D.J. Jones (Sr., Plymouth, Minn. / Wayzata)

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