Nine WCHA Players On Hobey Baker Award Fan Ballot
Fans can help choose college hockey's top player; first phase of balloting runs now through March 6
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Fans can help choose college hockey's top player; first phase of balloting runs now through March 6

EDINA, Minn. Jan. 21, 2015 Nine men's Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) players are among the 66 candidates on the initial fan ballot for the 2016 Hobey Baker Award, given annually to college hockey's top player.

The WCHA nominees, from six institutions, are: Gerald Mayhew (Jr., F, Ferris State); Max McHugh (So., F, Alabama Huntsville); Tyler Morley (Sr., F, Alaska); Chris Nell (So., G, Bowling Green); Alex Petan (Sr., F, Michigan Tech); Jamie Phillips (Sr., G, Michigan Tech); Kyle Schempp (Jr., F, Ferris State); Dominik Shine (Jr., F, Northern Michigan); and, Atte Tolvanen (Fr., F, Northern Michigan)

That grouping includes: Four of the WCHA's top-five overall points leaders (in order: Morley, Petan, Mayhew and McHugh); the league's top goaltenders by save percentage (Nell, who ranks second nationally; and Tolvanen, who is third among rookie netminders); and, Michigan Tech's all-time shutouts leader and a returning top-five Mike Richter Award finalist (Phillips). Additionally, Shine leads the WCHA in points over the last two months, while New York Islanders' draftee Schempp captains a Ferris State team that is in the thick of the league race.

The first phase of fan balloting runs now through March 6, 2016. Phase two of fan balloting will begin on March 17 from the list of the Top Ten Hobey Baker finalists. The fans' vote accounts for a full one percent of the total ballot in each phase in selecting this year's award recipient.

Fans can vote directly via the Hobey Baker Award Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/TheHobey. Detailed bios are available for each candidate among this year's outstanding crop of college hockey players.

Award criteria include candidates emulating the exceptional character traits exhibited by the award's namesake, Hobey Baker. A legendary American hero, Baker was a World War I fighter pilot and was known as America's greatest amateur athlete in his day, excelling at hockey and football at Princeton University. Award candidates must demonstrate strength of character both on and off the ice, contribute to the integrity of his team and display outstanding skills in all phases of the game. Consideration should be given to scholastic achievement and sportsmanship.

Key Hobey Baker announcement dates for 2016 include:

- Top Ten list of candidates: March 16

- Hobey Hat Trick of three finalists: March 31

- Hobey Baker Award announcement: April 8

The 2016 Hobey Baker Award winner will be announced from a field of three Hobey Hat Trick finalists on Friday, April 8, 2016 during the NCAA Frozen Four Championships in Tampa, Fla. For more info on the Hobey Baker Award or to access the Hobey logo, please visit www.hobeybakeraward.com.