NCHA Men's All-Conference, All-Freshmen Teams Released

NCHA Men's All-Conference, All-Freshmen Teams Released

St. Norbert College’s Cooper Named Player of the Year
as NCHA Releases All-League Honors and Awards

The Northern Collegiate Hockey Association league office announced the Men’s NCHA All-Conference Team, Player of the Year, Coach of the Year, Freshman of the Year and All-Freshmen Team late Tuesday. The awards are voted on by the league head coaches.


The 2015-16 Player of the Year is St. Norbert College senior forward Erik Cooper (Anchorage, Alaska). Cooper posted 28 points in 25 games this season, leading the Green Knights to a share of the NCHA regular-season championship and a No. 1 national ranking in both polls. He ended the season by scoring a point in 17 consecutive contests, matching the St. Norbert school record set in 2001. Overall, he recorded a goal or assist in 24 of the 25 regular-season games this season.

“Erik is the prototypical captain,” St. Norbert College head coach Tim Coghlin said. “He works extremely hard on the ice, off the ice and in the classroom. He leads our team in scoring and he’s our best defensive of player. On top of that he’s also a 3.73 graduating senior.”

Most of Cooper’s points came in close games or when games were far from decided. Of his team-leading 28 total points, 22 of them came on goals when his team was leading or trailing the opponent by two or less. Only eight of Cooper’s points were tallied when St. Norbert won decisively. In addition, in eight games versus teams that are currently ranked in national polls, he averaged more than a point per game. A three-year letter-winner, Cooper has put up 16 points (6G/10A) as a freshman, 37 (16G/21A) as a sophomore and 19 (11G/8A) last year as a junior.

Also announced tonight, the league coaches voted St. Norbert College’s Tim Coghlin the 2015-16 Coach of the Year. Coghlin earned his 500th coaching victory this year while piling up 21 wins through the end of the regular season - the 20th straight year he has guided the program to 18 or more victories. The Green Knights finished tied for first place in the NCHA and head into the Harris Cup Playoffs locked into the No. 2 overall seed. St. Norbert is currently ranked first in the NCAA West Region rankings. The honor is his first since 2010 but his seventh overall.

Along with the Player of the Year and Coach of the Year, the NCHA announced that Adrian forward Connor Armour (Bowmanville, Ont.) has been voted Freshman of the Year by the coaches. Armour led not only all NCHA freshmen in scoring, but all skaters. He also led the league in assists. Armour bagged 32 points on seven goals and 25 assists to lead the league, averaging 1.68 points per game in conference play. He recorded 37 points in 24 games played overall, helping the Bulldogs to a share of the NCHA regular-season title, the No. 1 overall seed heading into the Harris Cup Playoffs and the No. 2 ranking in the latest NCAA West Region rankings.

Armour was one of four Adrian Bulldogs that were voted All-NCHA by the league coaches.  Joining Armour was forward Mat Thompson (Bolton, Ont.) and defensemen Cory Dunn (Trenton, Mich.) and Chris Leone (Dearborn Heights, Mich.).  

St. Norbert had a pair of forwards - Cooper and Michael Hill (Fort Worth, Texas) - and defenseman Blake Thompson (Listowel, Ont.). Thompson is the most highly-decorated member of this year’s All-NCHA team, having been voted to the 2014 and 2015 All-NCHA squads. Marian University and the College of St. Scholastica rounded out the team with five total members. The Sabres had a trio, including a freshman. Gianni Mangone (Calgary, Alb.) earns top honors his first campaign, joined by teammates Derek Thorogood (So., Calgary, Alb.) and goalie Mike Baldwin (Jr., Waukesha, Wis.). The Saints rounded out the squad with Dylan Nowakowski (Calgary, Alberta) and goalie Tyler Bruggeman (Sr., North Mankato, Minn.), an all-league honoree as a sophomore.

Rounding out the awards voting was the All-Freshmen Team, which included four Adrian Bulldogs - Armour, Dunn, forward Bryan Yim (Farmington, Mich.) and goalie Kevin Entmaa (Milton, Ont.). The Marian Sabres filled the other two open slots: forward Jake Howie (Grand Blanc, Mich.) and defenseman Mangone.

2015-16 Men’s NCHA All-Conference Team
Forward: Connor Armour, Adrian College (Fr., Bowmanville, Ontario)
Forward: Erik Cooper, St. Norbert College (Sr., Anchorage, AK)
Forward: Michael Hill, St. Norbert College (Sr., Fort Worth, Texas) 2015
Forward: Dylan Nowakowski, College of St. Scholastica (Sr., Calgary, Alberta)
Forward: Mat Thompson, Adrian College (So., Bolton, Ontario) 2015 All-Freshmen
Forward: Derek Thorogood, Marian University (So., Calgary, Alb.)

Defense: Cory Dunn, Adrian College (Fr., Trenton, Mich.)
Defense: Chris Leone, Adrian College (Sr., Dearborn Heights, Mich.)
Defense: Gianni Mangone, Marian University (Fr, Calgary, Alb.)
Defense: Blake Thompson, St. Norbert College (Jr., Listowel, Ontario) 2014 | 2015 | 2014 All-Freshmen

Goalie: Mike Baldwin, Marian University (Jr., Waukesha, Wis.)
Goalie: Tyler Bruggeman, College of St. Scholastica (Sr., North Mankato, Minn.) 2014

2015-16 Men’s NCHA All-Freshman Team
Forward: Connor Armour, Adrian College (Fr, Bowmanville, Ontario)
Forward: Jake Howie, Marian University (Fr, Grand Blanc, Mich.)
Forward: Bryan Yim, Adrian College (Fr, Farmington, Mich.)
Defense: Cory Dunn, Adrian College (Fr, Trenton, Mich.)
Defense: Gianni Mangone, Marian University (Fr, Calgary, Alb.)
Goalie: Kevin Entmaa, Adrian College (Fr, Milton, Ontario)

2015-16 NCHA Player of the Year: Erik Cooper, St. Norbert College
2015-16 NCHA Freshman of the Year: Connor Armour, Adrian College
2015-16 NCHA Coach of the Year: Tim Coghlin, St. Norbert College