NAHL Alumni Update
November 18, 2015
Air Force freshman forward Kyle Haak is a true ladder of development success story having played three full seasons in the NAHL for the Aberdeen Wings from 2012-15, which was preceded by three years in the NAPHL with the Lansing Capitals from 2009-12.
More NAHL alumni were recognized this week in the NCAA at both the Division I and Division III levels, including three out of the four awards in the Atlantic Hockey Association. Here is a look at who was recognized:
NCHC Goaltender of the Week: Evan Cowley, University of Denver
Cowley pitched a shutout in his only action of the weekend as he backstopped Denver to a 3-0 win at No. 13/13 Minnesota Duluth on Friday. The Florida Panthers prospect turned aside all 27 shots he faced by the Bulldogs, including 10 saves in each of the first two periods. Eight of his saves came on UMD’s power plays as he helped DU go 2-for-2 on the penalty kill, including killing a brief 5-on-3 UMD power play and a five-minute power play. Cowley was named the game’s second star Friday while improving to 4-2-0 on the season. The shutout was his first of the season and fourth of his career. His 1.000 save percentage and 0.00 goals-against average Friday upped his save percentage from .904 to .921 for the season while his GAA dropped from 2.65 to 2.17. Cowley played in for the Wichita Falls Wildcats in the NAHL during the 2012-13 season.
Atlantic Hockey Rookie of the Week: Kyle Haak, Air Force
Air Force freshman Kyle Haak was named the Atlantic Hockey Conference rookie of the week as he helped lead Air Force to a home split against Holy Cross, Nov. 12-13. A center from Okemos, Mich., he had two goals in the Holy Cross series. He scored a short-handed goal on Friday in the 3-1 loss to the Crusaders. The next night, he scored the game-winner as the Falcons earned two league points. Haak leads the team, and ranks fourth among AHC freshmen, with four goals this season. He has two even-strength goals, one short-handed and one power play. Haak is a true ladder of development success story having played three full seasons in the NAHL for the Aberdeen Wings from 2012-15, which was preceded by three years in the NAPHL with the Lansing Capitals from 2009-12.
Atlantic Hockey Goalie of the Week: Gabe Antoni, Bentley
Antoni came on in relief at the start of the 3rd period of Friday’s 3-2 OT win at RIT and made 13 saves in 24 minutes to earn the win. He started Saturday’s 3-2 OT victory as well and stopped 36 shots as Bentley completed the sweep. For the weekend, he stopped 49 of 51 shots for a 1.41 GAA and .961 save percentage. Antoni played for the Springfield Jr. Blues in the NAHL during the 2011-12 season.
Atlantic Hockey Defensive Player of the Week: Ryan Nick, Army
Ryan Nick tallied his second goal of the season, and third of his career, in the final period against UConn to help the Black Knights to a 2-0 road victory over the Huskies. It was Nick's first career game-winner and he has set a new career best with two goals this year. He blocked two shots and was a plus-2 after assisting on an empty-netter in the final minutes to seal the Black Knight victory. Nick played 104 career games in the NAHL during the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons, mostly for the Port Huron Fighting Falcons. He also saw a few games with the Traverse City North Stars.
D3hockey.com First Team Defenseman: Mitch Hall, Hamline
Mitch had a big weekend as the Pipers split two games against Badger state foes. He had HU's lone goal in a 3-1 loss at UW-River Falls. Two nights later, against UW-Superior, he drew extra shifts when fellow defenseman Jonny Gehrt was sidelined with an injury in the first period. He assisted on three goals in regulation and then blistered a shot in the net through a screen at 1:19 of OT to give the Pipers a 5-4 win over UW-Superior. Hall played in the NAHL for two seasons for the Johnstown Tomahawks and Jamestown Ironmen from 2012-14.
Westfield State junior Jackson Leef (Fort Wayne, Ind.) has been named the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference men's ice hockey player of the week. The 6-foot, 186-pound center registered four points, including a hat trick and a game-winning goal, in a 2-0 week for the Owls. On Thursday, Leef scored all three Westfield goals, including the game-winner with 29 seconds remaining in regulation, to knock off MASCAC rival Fitchburg State, 3-2. He added an assist in the Owls' 5-2 win over UMass Dartmouth on Saturday. Leef currently ranks second in the MASAC in goals (5) and points (8), while leading the league with two points per game. Leef played in the NAHL for three seasons from 2010-13, all for the Texas Tornado.
Do you know of an NAHL alum doing some notable things? Send us an email and let us know!