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NCAA Roundup: 8 alums recognized with conference awards

Photo credits: Rob Rasmussen (Tufto), Jonathan Knight Photography (Johnson), Ed Mailliard (Briere), Mady Salvani (Galambos)

This week saw the highest number of former BCHL players rewarded with conference awards so far this year as six took home weekly honours and another two were recognized for their play in the month of December.

Atlantic Hockey Player of the Month

Will Calverley – Junior – Rochester Institute of Technology (Chilliwack Chiefs)

Calverley led Atlantic Hockey in scoring in December with 10 points on three goals and seven assists. He had points in five straight games to end the month, including four consecutive multi-point efforts. His Tigers went 3-1-0 in those four games and Calverley contributed both a game-winning goal and an assist on a game-winner in wins over Long Island and Niagara.

Calverley played two seasons in Chilliwack, notching 96 points in 111 regular-season games. He capped off his BCHL career with a National Championship as the Chiefs captured the RBC Cup on home ice in 2018. Calverley was named the MVP of the tournament and led all players with six goals in six games.

This is his first monthly award this season to go along with his two Player of the Week awards.

Atlantic Hockey Rookie of the Month

Carson Briere – Freshman – Mercyhurst University (Trail Smoke Eaters)

Briere was the top-scoring freshman in Atlantic Hockey during the month of December, totaling seven points in six games played. He had three goals and four assists, while helping Mercyhurst play their first month of the season to a 2-3-1 record. Briere finished the month with a four-point outing in a 7-4 win over Niagara.

The son of longtime NHLer Daniel Briere, Carson joined the Smoke Eaters midseason in 2019-20 and finished his lone BCHL campaign with 12 points in 24 games.

Briere previously won Atlantic Hockey Rookie of the Week in mid-December.

Atlantic Hockey Defensive Player of the Week

Zak Galambos – Sophomore – American International College (Wenatchee Wild)

Galambos registered his first points in an AIC uniform this past week, totaling six points on three goals and three assists in a 2-1-0 week for the Yellow Jackets. He had two goals in a 6-3 win, notched an assist on the overtime game-winner the following night, then came back with a goal and an assist in Sunday’s 5-3 loss. Galambos also blocked three shots and finished +3.

The 23-year-old from Walnut Creek, Calif. spent the 2017-18 season in Wenatchee where he put up 28 points in 41 regular-season games. In the playoffs, he outperformed his regular-season pace and notched 15 points in 20 games en route to a Fred Page Cup championship.

Galambos started as a freshman with Minnesota State University in 2018-19, but transferred to AIC after taking a year off last season.

ECAC Hockey Player of the Week

Odeen Tufto – Senior – Quinnipiac University (Vernon Vipers)

Tufto continued his hot start to the 2020-21 season last weekend with five more points in Quinnipiac’s three-game series against Clarkson. He finished the weekend with five assists, increasing his point streak to 10 straight games, which is tied for the longest in the nation. He also won a league-best 32 faceoffs for a .593 mark in the dot.

The Chaska, Minn. native played the 2015-16 season in Vernon where he led the team in goals (25), assists (40) and points (65).

This is his second ECAC Player of the Week award this season.

Big Ten 1st Star of the Week

Kent Johnson – Freshman – University of Michigan (Trail Smoke Eaters)

Johnson tallied five points in Friday night’s win against Michigan State to become the first Wolverine to collect five points in a single performance since J.T. Compher in 2016. He posted four assists on Friday, leading the conference for the entire weekend, as Michigan won 9-0. He also added a power-play goal in the third period.

Johnson was last year’s BCHL MVP and leading scorer after putting up 101 points in 52 games. He was named a First-Team All-Star, the league’s most sportsmanlike player and also won the CJHL’s Top Forward award. Through two seasons with Trail, the Port Moody, B.C. native registered 147 points in 112 regular-season games.

This is his second conference award of the year after he was named Big Ten 3rd Star of the Week the first week of the season.

Big Ten 3rd Star of the Week

Kevin Wall – Sophomore – Penn State University (Chilliwack Chiefs)

Wall registered a pair of multi-point games as Penn State split their series with Ohio State. He had two helpers in the Nittany Lions’ 6-3 Friday loss and then posted two goals and had a +3 rating during Saturday’s 5-2 win.

Wall finished eighth in BCHL scoring in his lone season in the league when he totaled 64 points in 49 games with the Chiefs in 2018-19 and was named a First-Team All-Star at the conclusion of the season. That offseason, the Penfield, N.Y. native was drafted by the Carolina Hurricanes in the sixth round of the 2019 NHL Entry Draft.

NCHC Goaltender of the Week

Scheel backstopped North Dakota to a sweep at Colorado College, allowing only one goal all series and none at even strength in 120 minutes of action. In Sunday’s series opener, he turned aside all 27 shots he faced for his second shutout of the season and fifth of his career. A night later, Scheel allowed only a power-play goal, while compiling 23 saves in a 2-1 victory to cap the series sweep.

The 20-year-old from Lakewood, Ohio had a 19-12-3 record in 2017-18 with Penticton and was named a Second-Team All-Star after finishing with the second-best goals-against average in the league with a mark of 2.08 and the fourth-highest save percentage at .927.

WCHA Defenceman of the Week

Dayne Finnson – Junior – University of Alabama-Huntsville (Victoria Grizzlies)

Finnson tied for first amongst WCHA defencemen this past weekend with three points on one goal and two assists in the Chargers’ home sweep of Ferris State. All three of his points came on the power play with one goal and two helpers on the man advantage. The Arborg, Man. native scored the game-winning goal in Friday night’s overtime win over Ferris State, finishing the game with a weekend-high two points on one goal and one assist.

The 23-year-old from Arbourg, Man. spent two seasons with the Grizzlies from 2016 to 2018 and finished sixth in points among BCHL blueliners in his final year with 41 points in 56 games.

This is Finnson’s second Defenceman of the Week award this year.