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NCAA Roundup: Year-End Award Winners

Yesterday, we went through the 23 BCHL alumni named to All-Conference Teams in the NCAA. Today, we highlight the five alums that won individual year-end awards in their respective conferences in the NCAA Roundup, presented by Johnston Meier Insurance.

ECAC Hockey Player of the Year & Goaltender of the Year

Yaniv Perets – Sophomore – Quinnipiac University (Penticton Vees)

Perets is the 12th goaltender in ECAC history to be named Player of the Year, dating back to 1961-62. He is the third Bobcat to be presented with this award. He is also the second consecutive Quinnipiac netminder to be named Goaltender of the Year.

One of the best goalies, not only in the league, but the nation, Perets led all of NCAA hockey in save percentage (.955), goals-against average (0.82) and shutouts (11). He also eclipsed ECAC Hockey league-only records in all of these categories, putting together one of the best goaltending seasons in the history of the conference. Perets was a huge part of a Bobcat team that finished the season 17-4-1 in league play.

The 22-year-old played the 2019-20 season with Penticton, posting the third-best goals-against average in the league at 2.19, the second most shutouts with five and a .918 save percentage.

Perets is a semifinalist for the Mike Richter Award for college hockey’s top goaltender, as well as a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award as college hockey’s top player.

ECAC Hockey Best Defensive Defenceman

Zach Metsa – Senior – Quinnipiac University (Merritt Centennials)

Metsa led a defensive unit that put together one of the best seasons in the history of NCAA Hockey, smashing the single-season shutout record with 16 blank sheets as a team. Metsa and the Bobcats led both the league and the nation in scoring defense, allowing just 0.93 goals per game in 2021-22. The senior blocked 24 shots and led the team with 34 points, 16 of which came in league play.

Metsa suited up for the Merritt Centennials in 2016-17 and had 27 points in 57 games.

CCHA Defenceman of the Year

Jake Livingstone – Sophomore – Minnesota State University (Langley Rivermen)

Livingstone finished tied for second among all defencemen in CCHA conference play with 19 points, led CCHA blueliners in goals with seven and added 12 assists in 26 CCHA games played. The 22-year-old earned 0.73 points-per-game, tallied one game-winning goal, one shorthanded goal and owned an impressive plus-22 rating on the ice. On the Mavericks roster, Livingstone finished sixth in points and fourth in blocked shots with 22 in conference play this season.

The Creston, B.C. native played four seasons in the BCHL with the Langley Rivermen. Over his 185 regular-season games, Livingstone notched 104 points. In his final year in the league in 2019-20, he finished as the BCHL’s second-highest scoring blueliner with 49 points in 52 games and was named a Second-Team All-Star and a finalist for the league’s Top Defenceman award.

Atlantic Hockey Best Defenceman

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

Quarterbacking AIC’s power play to a 23 per cent conversion rate, Galambos led the team at both ends of the rink, blocking 60 shots and notching 18 assists, a team high. He had an eight-game point streak from Jan. 15 through Feb. 10. and was at his best against the best opposition, with seven points in nine games played against Canisius, Army and RIT, the teams that finished in the top four in the conference along with AIC. Five of his assists came on game-winning goals and he also hit the net himself for the winner on Nov. 6 against RIT.

The 24-year-old 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.

Atlantic Hockey Rookie of the Year

Carter Wilkie – Freshman – Rochester Institute of Technology (Chilliwack/West Kelowna)

Wilkie quickly established himself as one of Atlantic Hockey’s top first-year players, winning five of the first seven Atlantic Hockey Rookie of the Week honours of the season as well as Rookie of the Month recognition for October and November. The Calgary, Alta., native finished the regular season ranked third in the conference with 27 points and second with 12 goals, including five game-winners, tied for the third-highest total in college hockey.

The 21-year-old forward played three seasons in the BCHL, split between the Chilliwack Chiefs and West Kelowna Warriors. Over his career, he notched 87 points in 127 regular-season games.