Three NAHL alumni named finalists for Mike Richter Award
March 28, 2019
Let’s Play Hockey announced today the five finalists for the 2019 Mike Richter Award, which honors the most outstanding goaltender in NCAA men’s hockey.
The list of five goalies includes three who previously played in the North American Hockey League (NAHL).
The 2019 Mike Richter Award will be announced at 5 p.m. ET on Friday, April 12 from the KeyBank Rink at The Rinks at Harborcenter in Buffalo, N.Y., during the 2019 NCAA Frozen Four. The announcement, held prior to the Hobey Baker Award presentation, will be streamed live at www.hobeybaker.com.
Candidates for the Mike Richter Award were determined by nominations from all 60 NCAA Division I men’s hockey head coaches. The finalists and winner are selected by a committee of coaches, scouts and members of the media.
NOTES: All five semifinalists are Americans • The finalists represent four different U.S. states – Minnesota (2), Alaska (1), Massachusetts (1), New Jersey (1) • Conference breakdown – ECAC 2, Hockey East 1, NCHC 1, Independent 1 • The finalists include four juniors and one freshman.
Candidates who are NAHL alumni (Alphabetical):
Jake Kielly, Clarkson (Austin Bruins, 2014-15) - Jake Kielly is a member of the ECAC All-Conference Second Team and was a finalist for the ECAC Goaltender of the Year Award. A native of Eden Prairie, Minn., Kielly posted a 26-10-2 record and ranks first in the nation in wins, fifth in shutouts (5), sixth in minutes played (2250:00), seventh in goals-against average (1.89), eighth in save percentage (.929) and 15th in saves (931). In backstopping Clarkson to a third-place tie in the ECAC and the nation’s No. 7 ranking, Kielly posted eight games with 30 or more saves and earned a .930 or better save percentage in 21 games this season. The junior was named MVP of the Desert Hockey Classic, gained ECAC Hockey Goaltender of the Month honors for October and January, and earned ECAC Hockey Goaltender of the Week accolades three times this season. Kielly is a financial information & analysis major at Clarkson.
Hunter Shepard, Minnesota-Duluth (Bismarck Bobcats, 2014-16) - Hunter Shepard backstopped the second-ranked Bulldogs to a second-place finish in the NCHC and a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament while earning NCHC Goaltender of the Year and All-NCHC First Team honors. The junior from Cohasset, Minn., owns a 25-11-2 record and ranks tied for second in the nation in wins, tied for third in shutouts (6), fourth in minutes played (2304:41), sixth in goals-against average (1.87), 10th in winning percentage (.684) and 23rd in save percentage (.918). A three-time NCHC Goalie of the Week honoree, Shepard has played over 98 percent of the Bulldogs’ minutes this season. The NCHC Player of the Year finalist and 2018 Mike Richter Award semifinalist has allowed two goals or less 28 times and has posted a .930 or better save percentage in 19 games. Shepard is a business major at Minnesota Duluth.
Andrew Shortridge, Quinnipiac (Aberdeen Wings, 2014-15) - Andrew Shortridge leads the nation in goals-against average (1.51) and save percentage (.941) for the eighth-ranked Bobcats. The ECAC Goalie of the Year and an All-ECAC First Team selection led Quinnipiac to a share of the ECAC regular season championship, posting a 17-6-2 overall record. A native of Anchorage, Alaska, he ranks seventh in the nation in winning percentage (.720), tied for 10th in shutouts (4) and 15th in wins. Shortridge began the season splitting time with sophomore netminder Keith Petruzzelli, but assumed the starting job in late-December. The junior goalie stopped 30 or more shots in five games this season, and posted a .930 or better save percentage in 19 games. Shortridge’s goals-against average and save percentage are on pace to break the single-season Quinnipiac records. Shortridge is a mechanical engineering major at Quinnipiac.
Candidates for the Mike Richter Award were determined by nominations from all 60 NCAA Division I men’s hockey head coaches. The semifinalists, finalists and winner are selected by a committee of coaches, scouts and members of the media.
Criteria for the Mike Richter Award:
- Candidates must display outstanding skills on the ice
- Candidates should be in good academic standing at an NCAA college or university
- Consideration should be given to academic achievement and sportsmanship
- Candidates must comply with all NCAA rules; be full-time students at an NCAA college or university; and complete 50 percent or more of the season
- Consideration should be given to the candidate’s activities in the community
Past winners: 2018 Cale Morris (Notre Dame), 2017 Tanner Jaillet (Denver), 2016 Thatcher Demko (Boston College), 2015 Zane McIntyre (North Dakota), 2014 Connor Hellebuyck (UMass Lowell)