Scott Perunovich beats out Jordan Kawaguchi to win Hobey; UND forward makes first-team All-America
UND will have to wait at least another year for another Hobey Baker Award winner.
Minnesota Duluth junior defenseman Scott Perunovich beat out UND junior forward Jordan Kawaguchi and Maine goalie Jeremy Swayman for the honor, which goes to the top individual player in college hockey.
The winner was announced by John Buccigross on ESPN's SportsCenter on Saturday night, which replaced the regularly scheduled ceremony because of the coronavirus outbreak.
A couple of hours before the announcement, Kawaguchi tweeted: "No matter the result. Thank you to everyone that has supported me to this point! Coaches, friends, fans, teammates and most importantly my family. Truly honored and humbled to be considered for this award and I didn't do it alone."
Kawaguchi was hoping to become the third UND player to win the honor, which began in 1981. Tony Hrkac won it in 1987 and Ryan Duncan won it in 2007. Mark Taylor also was named national player of the year by The Hockey News the year before the Hobey was awarded.
Kawaguchi didn't come away empty handed.
He was named a first-team All-American. He's the first UND All-American since Tucker Poolman in 2016-17.
UND finished the season 26-5-4 and was at No. 1 in the Pairwise Rankings when the season came to a sudden end due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Perunovich is the sixth Hobey winner from Minnesota Duluth, joining Jack Connolly (2012), Junior Lessard (2004), Chris Marinucci (1994), Bill Watson (1985) and Tom Kurvers (1984). The Bulldogs have more winners than any other school. Harvard and Minnesota are tied for second with four each.
Kawaguchi and Perunovich split national player of the year honors between the two national websites that cover the sport.
Kawaguchi, a junior from Abbotsford, B.C., was named U.S. College Hockey Online's national player of the year. He was named first-team, all-National Collegiate Hockey Conference. He won the NCHC's forward of the year honor. And his between-the-legs goal against Alabama Huntsville earned the NCHC's play of the year distinction.
Kawaguchi finished second nationally in scoring with 45 points, only behind Providence's Jack Dugan's 52. He led the nation in primary points (primary assists plus goals, 38) and game-winning points (13).
Perunovich, meanwhile, was named College Hockey News' national player of the year and the NCHC's player of the year. The junior from Hibbing, Minn., who agreed to terms with the St. Louis Blues earlier this month, led the Bulldogs in scoring with 40 points in 34 games this season.
The third member of the Hobey Hat Trick, Swayman, won the Mike Richter Award as the top goalie in college hockey.
Scott Perunovich of UMD wins the Hobey Baker award pic.twitter.com/72mBp2CK3P— CJ Fogler (@cjzero) April 12, 2020
All-American first-team West
F - Jordan Kawaguchi, North Dakota
F - Marc Michaelis, MSU-Mankato
F - Hugh McGing, Western Michigan
D - Ian Mitchell, Denver
D - Scott Perunovich, Minnesota Duluth
G - Dryden McKay, MSU-Mankato
All-American second-team West
F - Cole Koepke, Minnesota Duluth
F - Noah Cates, Minnesota Duluth
F - Nate Sucese, Penn State
D - Cole Hults, Penn State
D - Alec Rauhauser, Bowling Green
D - Connor Mackey, MSU-Mankato
G - Hunter Shepard, Minnesota Duluth