Seven members of the Hobart College ice hockey team were honored by the Statesmen Athletic Association and the Hobart Athletic Department at the Block H Awards Dinner on April 27. Senior defenseman Ryan Michel and senior forward Tommaso Traversa were presented with the Boswell Award as the team’s MVP.
Senior defenseman Peter Ryan, Terrence O’Neill and Bronson Kovacs shared the Holden Award, and the D. Michael Hazelton ’85 Memorial Award was given to senior forward Sean Rudy. First-year goalie Frank Oplinger was presented with the Rookie Award for Hockey.
An All-ECAC West first team member, Michel finished second on the team with 15 assists. He finished third in the conference in defenseman scoring (0.73 ppg), seventh in assists, and eighth in power play points (10). Michel recorded a season-high three points (1g, 2a) in a 7-4 win over Geneseo in January. He set up Ben Gamache’s game-winning goal in the regular season finale against Elmira. Michel was placed on the ECAC West All-Tournament team after limiting opponents to just two goals during the tournament. He played a key role in the Statesmen defense which topped the conference, allowing just 2.50 goals per game.
Michel is a two-time recipient of the Boswell Award and won the Hazelton Award as a sophomore. He played in 93 games in his career, recording eight goals and 60 assists for 68 points. Michel’s assists total ranks ninth all-time in Statesmen history.
The ECAC West Defensive Player of the Year and an All-ECAC West first team selection, Traversa played in all 28 games for Hobart this season. He finished the year third on the team in points with 21 (12g, 9a). Traversa finished the year third in the ECAC West in goals, seventh in power play goals (4), 11th in points, and 12th in power-play points (8). He notched a season-high three points on two goals and an assist in a 5-4 win over Utica. Traversa netted the game-winning goal in a 6-2 win over Southern Maine in Lake Placid.
A three-time member of the ECAC West All-Academic team, Traversa played in 101 career games, registering 32 goals and 40 assists for 72 points.
A captain, Ryan played in all 28 games this season. He recorded nine points on a goal and eight assists. Ryan scored the game-winning goal in a 4-3 win over Nichols. He was a member of the Statesmen defense which topped the conference, allowing just 2.50 goals per game.
A three-time ECAC West All-Academic pick, he played in 95 games. He registered five goals and 16 assists for 21 career points.
O’Neill, a captain and an All-ECAC West honorable mention, played in 22 games this season for Hobart. He tallied six points, all on assists, this season. O’Neill set up the game-tying goal in the third period of a 7-4 come from behind win against Geneseo.
O’Neill also received the Joseph N. Abraham Memorial Award. He is a three-time ECAC West All-Academic Team selection. He played in 95 career games, logging eight goals and 39 assists for 47 points.
Kovacs, also a team captain, played in 27 games this season. He tallied 11 points on two goals and nine assists. A defensive leader, Kovacs paced the team in blocked shots with 33. He registered a season-high three points against Potsdam netting a goal and two assists.
Kovacs played in 98 career games for Hobart knocking in 19 goals and adding 26 assists for 45 points. He was also a three-time member of the ECAC West All-Academic team.
Rudy, the ECAC West Tournament Most Outstanding Player, played in 21 games for the Statesmen. He recorded 16 points, tallying eight goals and eight assists this season. Rudy led the team with four game-winning goals, including the game-winner against Neumann in overtime of the ECAC West Championship Game. He recorded a season-high three points during a regular season contest against Neumann.
An All-ECAC West first team and ECAC West All-Rookie Team selection, Oplinger played in 17 games, finishing with a 14-3 record. The first-year was named the ECAC West Goaltender of the Week three times this season and the ECAC West Rookie of the Week once. Oplinger led the ECAC West in goals against average (2.09), save percentage (.932) and winning percentage (.824). He ranked seventh nationally in winning percentage, 10th nationally in save percentage, and 17th in goals against average. Oplinger recorded a pair of shutouts on the year.
Oplinger also won the Abe Solomon Memorial Award as the Hobart Athletic Department’s Rookie of the Year.
The Statesmen finished the 2014-15 campaign with a 21-7-0 overall record, tying the program record for wins in a season and earning their fifth NCAA tournament appearance in program history. Hobart topped Elmira 5-1 in their ECAC West tournament semifinal and then defeated Neumann 2-1 in overtime in the championship game to capture its third ECAC West tournament title. The Statesmen were ranked No. 10 in the final USCHO.com poll of the season.