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Patterson, Bjugstad named to all-WCHA first team

  • Blog Post by: Roman Augustoviz
  • March 8, 2012 - 7:23 PM

The ballots are in and the votes are counted for the all-WCHA team this season.

The Gophers, the WCHA regular-season champions, had four players honored. Senior goalie Kent Patterson was named to the all-WCHA first team as was sophomore center Nick Bjugstad.

Patterson also was the conference's goaltending champion because his goals-against average of 2.06 was the league's lowest.

Other first team members were senior center Jack Connolly of Minnesota Duluth -- the Player of the Year -- and teammate J.T. Brown at the other forward spot.

The first team all-WCHA defenseman are junior Justin Schultz of Wisconin -- the Defensive Player of the Year -- and Joey LaLeggia of Denver -- the Rookie of the Year.

Sophomore Nate Schmidt of the Gophers made the all-WCHA second team, which has two players from Colorado College and two from Denver.

CC's players are forward Jaden Schwartz and defenseman Gabe Guentzel, the son of Gophers associate head coach Mike Guentzel. Denver's honorees are forwards Jason Zucker, a Wild draft pick, and Drew Shore. The goalie on the second team is UMD goalie Kenny Reiter.

The third all-WCHA team has two North Dakota players, forward Brock Nelson and defenseman Ben Blood. Mark Zengerle of Wisconsin and Travis Oleksuk of UMD are the other two forwards. Nick Jensen of St. Cloud State is the other defenseman. The goalie is Josh Torimbert of Colorado Springs.

The all-WCHA rookie team has players from six teams. Kyle Rau of the Gophers is one of the forwards along with Jean-Paul Lafontaine of Minnesota State Mankato and Jayson Megna of Nebraska Omaha.

The defensemen are LaLeggia and Andrew Prochno of St. Cloud State. The goalie is Juho Olkinuora of Denver.

Named the coach of the Year was Mel Pearson of Michigan Tech. Pearson, in his first season at Tech, made the Huskies program respectable. Tech finished in eighth place, two points out of a home-ice spot for the first round of the WCHA playoffs.

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