EDINA, Minn. – Dec. 7, 2015 – For their efforts in helping their respective teams go a combined 5-0-1 on the road in league play, the men's Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) Players of the Week for Nov. 30 – Dec. 6, 2015 are: Northern Michigan junior forward Dominik Shine (Offensive Player of the Week), Alaska Anchorage sophomore goaltender Olivier Mantha (Defensive Player of the Week) and Lake Superior State freshman forward Gage Torrel (Rookie of the Week).
Dominik Shine, Jr., F
Northern Michigan (Pinckney, Mich.)
Shine almost single-handedly led Northern Michigan to a 4-3 victory last Friday night at Alabama Huntsville, giving the Wildcats the lead with each of his three goals – including the game-winner on a short-handed penalty shot with just 17 seconds remaining in regulation. The junior from Pinckney, Mich. scored twice in the first period, opening the game's scoring at the 8:17 mark and then putting NMU ahead 2-1 at the 15:21 mark. Shine then completed his first career hat trick in dramatic style: With the Wildcats on the penalty kill and under a minute remaining in the third period, he picked off a UAH pass, raced the other way on a breakaway and, after he was tripped up, converted on the tie-breaking penalty shot at the 19:43 mark. Shine added four shots on goal during Saturday's game, in which NMU earned a 1-1 tie and three-point weekend.
Also nominated: Tyler Heinonen, Jr., F, Michigan Tech; Michael Huntebrinker, Jr., F, Minnesota State; Max McHugh, So., F, Ferris State
Olivier Mantha, So., G
Alaska Anchorage (La Tuque, Québec)
Mantha backstopped Alaska Anchorage to an impressive road sweep at then-No. 17 Michigan Tech, negating the Huskies' overall 66-45 advantage in shots by making 62 saves in a pair of 3-2 Seawolves' victories. Friday night, UAA was outshot by a 34-18 margin; however, Mantha turned aside 32 shots. The sophomore from La Tuque, Quebec followed that up with a 30-save effort Saturday as UAA completed the sweep. The Seawolves erased 2-1, third-period deficits in both games by twice scoring a pair of final-stanza goals; Mantha stopped all 17 third-period shots he faced Friday and Saturday to help propel and maintain the UAA comebacks.
Also nominated: Michael Bitzer, So., G, Bemidji State; Carmine Guerriero, Jr., G, Alabama Huntsville; Nick Kossoff, Fr., G, Lake Superior State; Charles Williams, Jr., G, Ferris State
Gage Torrel, Fr., F
Lake Superior State (Monticello, Minn.)
Torrel contributed a three-point weekend – tops among WCHA rookies – in helping Lake Superior State to its first road sweep since Feb. 21-22, 2014. The freshmen from Monticello, Minn. factored in both Lakers' goals during a 2-0, sweep-clinching victory Saturday at Alaska. Torrel broke a scoreless tie with a short-handed strike at the 18:41 mark of the second period for his first collegiate game-winning goal, and then assisted on a Lakers' empty-net strike that sealed the victory. Torrel also assisted on a second-period, power-play goal Friday night that drew LSSU even at 1-1 en route to an eventual 4-2 victory.
Also nominated: Brett Boeing, Fr., F, Michigan Tech; Jetlan Houcher, Fr., F, Alabama Huntsville; Corey Mackin; Fr., F, Ferris State; Connor McDonald, Fr., D, Bowling Green; Sean MacTavish, Fr., F, Alaska Anchorage; T.J. Roo, Fr., F, Bemidji State