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My Vote for Hobey

Those of us the college hockey blogosphere have gotten together and decided that we're going to all cast our own vote for the Hobey Baker Award.

The voting for this is a little different than regular Hobey voting. Each blog gets up to five choices for the award, with a first place vote being worth 5 points, a second place worth 4, etc. Also, each blog will make a Wildcard Pick of a player who doesn't get as much recognition, and won't win the award, but deserves mention.

Here's my ballot:

1. Brian Elliott, Junior, Goalie, Wisconsin

Elliott has been by far the most impressive that I’ve seen this year. His statistics are almost mind-boggling. After giving up 4 goals in the first series of the season to St. Lawrence, Elliott went ten straight weekends giving up 3 goals or less. His two worst performances of the season, giving up three goals to both Minnesota and Michigan Tech, were followed up by shutouts the following night. You can make any argument you want about the defense playing in front of him, but for a goalie to be that dominant, he has to be a special player. Fundamentally, Elliott is nearly flawless and that allows him to make very difficult saves look like easy stops. Elliott has been the most dominant player in college hockey so far this season.

2. Scott Parse, Junior, Forward, Nebraska-Omaha

Parse has received surprisingly little respect for being the nation’s leading scorer. He is definitely a legitimate candidate for the award though. Parse has only been held off the scoresheet in five of his thirty games so far. He is always dangerous whenever he is on the ice, and for a prolific scorer, isn’t that bad defensively either. He may not that many goals, but he makes the players around him better and has put Omaha in a position to compete for an NCAA berth late in the season.

3. Chris Collins, Senior, Forward, Boston College

Collins has been the most dangerous scorer in the East, and has proven to be just as dangerous scoring goals as he is at setting them up. He leads the nation in shorthanded goals with an impressive five shorties. His numbers are somewhat inflated by a Kessel-rific 7 point weekend against UMass where BC outscored the Minuteman by a score of 11-1. Collins has been one of the main reasons for Boston College’s dominance in the east this season though.

4. Matt Carle, Junior, Defenseman, Denver

Carle had the benefit of playing with an experience, talented group of defenseman in his previous two seasons. This season, Carle has had to lead the Pioneers on the blueline and has done a great job of it. Carle has to play close to half the game every night for the Pioneers. He is one of the best defensive defenseman in the league, and also leads the WCHA in conference scoring. He does a great job quarterbacking the Denver powerplay and matches up the opposing teams top defensive unit every game.

Wildcard Pick:

Bobby Goepfert, Junior, Goalie, St. Cloud State

There’s really only two things you need to know about Bobby Goepfert this season. First, the Huskies haven’t won a game in which he’s allowed three or more goals this season. Second, the Huskies are likely going to finish with home ice in the WCHA playoffs and go to the NCAA tournament. Goepfert has done an amazing job keeping the Huskies in games long enough for their struggling offense to win the game. Without him, the Huskies would likely be languishing in the WCHA’s basement once again.