SEASON REVIEW: The 2009-10 Seawolf hockey team wrapped up the season with a 11-23-5 overall record and a 9-17-2 slate in Western Collegiate Hockey Association action ... UAA completed the conference season tied for 8th with Minnesota State with 20 points ... UAA received the ninth-place seed in the WCHA First Round and drew second seed Wisconsin ... the Badgers swept UAA in the best-of-three series, ending the Seawolf season and their chances of making an appearance at the WCHA Final Five tournament ... throughout the season, the Seawolves posted upsets over nationally ranked North Dakota, Denver, Colorado College and Minnesota Duluth.
TEAM AWARDS HANDED OUT: Senior Kevin Clark was selected as the Seawolves' Most Valuable Player, announced at the hockey banquet on March 31 ... Clark ended his college career leading the Seawolves in seven categories - points (37), goals (23), shots (113), shot percentage (.204), power-play goals (7), penalties (39), and penalty minutes (89), while tying for first in short-handed goals (2) and game-winning goals (2) ... Clark also brought home the Leon Thompson Fan Favorite award for the third consecutive season ... six other Seawolves were honored at the end-of-the-year banquet ... garnering the Coaches Award was senior captain Jared Tuton ... senior Jon Olthuis was recognized as the Student-Athlete ... freshman Alex Gellert was named the Rookie of the Year, junior Craig Parkinson selected as Most Inspirational, while junior Sean Wiles was Most Improved ... sophomore Jade Portwood picked up his second Corner Man honor.
GOING PRO: To date, five Seawolves will continue their hockey careers at the pro level ... senior Trevor Hunt signed an amateur tryout agreement (ATO) with the Stockton Thunder of the ECHL on March 17, where he will suit up with his younger brother, Garet ... the Thunder is an affiliate of the Edmonton Oilers of the NHL ... senior Kevin Clark signed an ATO with the AHL's Manitoba Moose on March 19 ... the Winnipeg, Manitoba, native scored his first goal on his first shot with the Moose, an affiliate of the NHL's Vancouver Canucks ... senior Josh Lunden signed an entry level contract with the NHL's Pheonix Coyotes on March 20 and will start off with their AHL team, the San Antonio Rampage ... freshman Lee Baldwin ended his college career after one season with the Seawolves when he agreed to terms with the New York Rangers on March 22 ... Baldwin will suit up for the AHL's Hartford Wolfpack ... lastly, senior Nils Backstrom will be staying in town after he signed an ATO with the Alaska Aces on March 29.
SENIOR SEND OFF: The Seawolves will say goodbye to seven seniors-the most since the 2002-03 season ... Nils Backstrom, Kevin Clark, Trevor Hunt, Josh Lunden, Jon Olthuis, Ken Selby and Jared Tuton each finished their college career against Wisconsin in the WCHA First Round playoffs on March 12-13 ... assistant captain Backstrom, from Stocksund, Sweden, ended his time with the Green & Gold with 6-18-24 totals in 110 games played ... assistant captain Clark (Winnipeg, Manitoba) suited up for a team-high 141 career games played with 51-57-108 totals ... from the blueline, Hunt (Maple Ridge, B.C.) registered 5-17-22 totals in 100 games played ... another assistant captain, Lunden, from Coquitlam, B.C., posted 47 points, and 37 assists for 84 career points in 126 games ... Olthuis (.880sv%, 3.30gaa, 23-47-12), a goaltender from Neerlandia, Alberta, received the start between the pipes in 89 games throughout his career ... a native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Selby dressed in 58 games, recording 2-3-5 totals ... Tuton, the walk-on turned captain from Whitehorse, Yukon, skated in 138 games and registered 3-12-15 totals throughout his four years.
GOVERNOR'S CUP: The three-time defending Alaska Airlines Governor's Cup champions, UAA, failed to four-peat when it was swept by then-No. 17 Alaska Fairbanks, 7-4, 3-2 on Feb. 26-27 ... the Seawolves hosted the first game of the series in Anchorage and took a two-goal lead on scores from senior Josh Lunden and junior Tommy Grant, before allowing UAF four unanswered goals ... senior Kevin Clark netted two goals, but it wasn't enough as the Nanooks grabbed a 1-0 lead in the series ... in Fairbanks, UAF claimed the lead in the all-time Cup history (9-8) with the help of two power -lay goals ... the Seawolves' goals were scored by junior defensemen Kane Lafranchise and Luka Vidmar. See complete Cup history on page 4.
KENDALL HOCKEY CLASSIC: UAA got two goals apiece from forwards Tommy Grant and Craig Parkinson to knock off Mercyhurst 5-3 in their season-opener Oct. 9 in the 2009 Kendall Hockey Classic ... senior F Josh Lunden picked up two points with a goal and one assist, and senior G Jon Olthuis earned the win in goal with 19 saves ... earlier that night, Alaska Fairbanks defeated CCHA powerhouse Michigan, 2-0 ... on Saturday, UAF downed Mercyhurst, 5-1, while the Seawolves went on to face then-No. 3/4 Michigan and fell to the Wolverines, 6-1 ... senior F Kevin Clark was the lone Seawolf to score ... with the two wins, UAF won the tournament for the second straight season ... UAF's G Scott Greenham was selected as the Most Outstanding Player, while UAF's Dion Knelsen and Joe Sova, Michigan's Chris Summers and Matt Rust and UAA's Grant and Lunden were named to the all-tournament team.
BRICE GOAL RUSH: On Oct. 16-17, the Seawolves competed in the second annual Brice Alaska Goal Rush tournament in Fairbanks ... on Oct. 16, the Seawolves shut out RPI, 3-0 ... the Seawolves got on the board with a goal by freshman F Alex Gellert, followed by their second goal at 14:41 by senior F Josh Lunden ... UAA added one more tally at the end of the second frame of play for the final score off the stick of senior F Kevin Clark ... on Saturday afternoon, the Seawolves fell to Robert Morris, 5-3 ... the Colonials got on the board first and never relinquished the lead ... UAA goals were scored by sophomore D Curtis Leinweber, junior F Nick Haddad and Clark ... representing UAA on the all-tournament team was senior G Jon Olthuis for his shutout against RPI ...
WCHA PLAYERS OF THE WEEK: Throughout the season, two Seawolves were recognized for their performances with WCHA Player of the Week honors ... UAA's first honor went to junior F Sean Wiles on Nov. 10 when he received the WCHA co-Offensive Player of the Week ... Wiles claimed the honor after registering three goals in the series against then-No. 2 Denver ... senior F Kevin Clark netted two weekly honors during the season ... his first (Jan. 20) came on the heels of a six-point weekend at Michigan Tech on Jan. 15-16, including his first career hat trick ... Clark received his fourth career weekly honor for a four-goal weekend against Minnesota Duluth on March 5-6.
WCHA ALL-ACADEMIC TEAM: Ten Seawolves were among the record-breaking 114 student-athletes named to the men's All-WCHA Academic Team for the 2009-10 season, the conference announced on March 12 ... earning the recognition for the third time of their careers were seniors Trevor Hunt, Josh Lunden and Jon Olthuis ... second-time repeaters were seniors Nils Backstrom, Kevin Clark and Jared Tuton and junior Luka Vidmar ... receiving the honor for the first time were sophomores Brad Gorham, Jade Portwood and Dusan Sidor.
SCHOLAR-ATHLETE HONORS: A program-high five Seawolves were among 77 student-athletes to receive the fifth annual Western Collegiate Hockey Association Scholar-Athlete award ... senior defenseman Nils Backstrom and senior goaltender Jon Olthuis were amid 40 athletes that were repeat honorees from the 2008-09 season ... also representing UAA with their first Scholar-Athlete award were seniors Josh Lunden and Jared Tuton and sophomore Dusan Sidor ... Olthuis, from Neerlandia, Alberta, received the honor for the third time of his career after earning UAA's first ever recognition in 2007-08.
WCHA POSTSEASON: The Denver Pioneers claimed the MacNaughton Cup and earned the No. 1 seed going into the first round ... the Pioneers defeated No. 10 Michigan Tech, while No. 2 Wisconsin downed No. 9 UAA, No. 3 St. Cloud State defeated No. 7 Minnesota State, No. 4 North Dakota took out No. 6 Minnesota and No. 5 Minnesota Duluth won against No. 6 Colorado College-securing all home teams a berth to the WCHA Final Five ... at the conference tournament, UND defeated the defending champion, UMD, in the play-in game on March 18 ... in the semi finals, SCSU upset DU and UND defeated UW on March 19 ... in the finals, the Fighting Sioux were victorious over the Huskies, claiming the Broadmoor Trophy ... this season marks the end of a 10-team conference ... next season Bemidji State and Nebraska-Omaha will join the conference and six teams will advance to the Final Five-two play-in games, two semi finals and the final game (no consolation game).
SECOND-MOST LEAGUE WINS: The Seawolves ended the regular season with a 9-17-2 conference record for a .360 winning percentage - Dave Shyiak's second-best season ... the nine conference wins tie Shyaik's best season, which was 2008-09 (9-14-5).
SCORING BREAKDOWN: The junior class (6 skaters) produced 40 percent of UAA's scoring with 34 goals and 57 assists, while the senior class (6 skaters) produced 27 percent and the freshman class (7 skaters) comprised 23 percent of the scoring ... the sophomores, with only three representatives, brought in the final 10 percent ... senior F Kevin Clark made up 16% of the scoring with 37 points ... combined, UAA recorded 229 points (87 goals, 142 assists), and allowed 141 goals and 232 assists against for 373 points ... as a team UAA was .099 on shot percentage, placing 880 shots on net ... the Seawolves allowed 1,017 shots on goal for a .139 shot percentage.
SHYIAK CLIMBING AHEAD: With the win against Minnesota Duluth on March 5, head coach Dave Shyiak became the second-winningest coach in UAA history with 51 career victories ... program founder Brush Christiansen is out of reach with 287 career wins over 17 seasons ... Shyiak owns an overall record of 51-109-21 after the completion of five seasons.
SUITING UP FOR THE GREEN & GOLD: At the conclusion of the season, four Seawolves made the all-time games played list ... leading the pack with 141 career games under his belt is senior F Kevin Clark ... Clark ended his college career tied for No. 8 with Mike Scott (1992-02) ... captain D Jared Tuton is tied for No. 12 with 138 games, F Josh Lunden (126) is tied for No. 39, and just breaking into the list at No. 64 with 110 games played was senior D Nils Backstrom ... Justin Bourne (2003-06) leads the board with 149 games played ... senior G Jon Olthuis suited up in 89 career games, ranking him second on the goaltender list behind Paul Krake (102gp) ... his 5094:03 career minutes ranks him third ... Olthuis finished his career with 23 wins, good for a tie for No. 6 on the all-time UAA wins list with Jeff Carlson (1986-89) ... Olthuis posted the most career wins for a Seawolves goaltender since Shaun Gravistin had 29 from 1990-93.
CATCHING UP WITH CLARK: Senior F Kevin Clark led the Seawolves this season in multiple categories, while advancing in the all-time UAA lists ... Clark paced UAA in seven categories ... the Winnipeg, Manitoba, native posted 23 goals - the most for a Seawolf since Derek Donald had 23 in 1991-92 ... Clark's 108 career points rank him No. 18 on the all-time scoring list ... Clark became just the 22nd Seawolf skater to join the 100-point club ... on the all-time penalties list, Clark is 4th with 124 and 2nd for penalty minutes (325) ... the 325 minutes spent in the box adds up to five games and two periods worth of penalties ... Jeff Batters (1989-92) easily holds down No. 1 for penalty minutes with 411.
'WOLF BITES: UAA concluded the season with a 7-10-0 overall record at home, 3-12-2 away and 1-1-0 on neutral ice ... in conference action, the Seawolves were 6-8-0 at home and 3-9-2 on the road ... in non-conference play, UAA posted a 2-6-0 record ... through the season, the Seawolves only won back-to-back games once, sweeping Michigan Tech on Jan. 15-16 on the road ... UAA faired the best in the month of January, posting a 4-3-1 record, and struggled in February (0-5-1) and in March (1-3-0) ... against ranked opponents, the Seawolves were 5-14-2, including 3-8-2 against teams ranked No. 5 or better ... on the power play, the Seawolves tallied 24 goals in 183 attempts (.131%), and allowed 45 PPG.
PLAYER NOTES: In addition to senior F Kevin Clark's outstanding season, multiple other Seawolves recorded their best seasons ... junior F Tommy Grant tallied one more point than his sophomore season ... Grant led UAA in assists this season with 17, while finishing second in goals (9), points (26) and shots (98) ... he also recorded 3 power-play goals ... junior F Sean Wiles (9-8-17) produced more points this season than he did during his first two seasons with the Green & Gold, including tripling his goal production ... junior D Kane Lafranchise (3-12-15), UAA's leader from the blueline this season, recorded five more points than he did during his sophomore year ... sophomore F/D Curtis Leinweber (4g, 8 a) tied his point production from his rookie campaign with 12 points ... junior D Luka Vidmar (2-10-12) registered more points this season than his freshman and sophomore seasons combined ... junior F Nick Haddad tied his best season (2008-09) with 10 points (5g, 5a) this year ... sophomore F Jade Portwood (3-2-5) posted one more point than his rookie season ... altogether, UAA had 13 skaters with 10+ points this season.