- The starting goaltender on the Plymouth State University men's ice hockey team highlighted the list of awards handed out by the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Friday when the ECAC Northeast Conference announced its annual award winners.
PSU sophomore goaltender Karl Helgesson (Lerum, Sweden) received top honors from the conference as he was voted ECAC Northeast Player of the Year and ECAC Northeast Goalie of the Year as well as First Team All-ECAC Northeast. Helgesson was one of three Panthers to be honored, as junior forward Goose LaCroix (Moretown, Vt.) was named All-Northeast Second Team, senior forward Dennis Kane (Westford, Mass.) earned All-Northeast Honorable Mention, and freshman defenseman Pat Turcotte (Goffstown, N.H.) was selected to the ECAC Northeast All-Rookie Team. All of the selections are voted on by the league's head coaches.
The Second Team All-Northeast goalie a year ago, the 6'2", 170-pound Helgesson (right) had another superb season between the pipes for the Panthers. He finished second in the league in saves percentage (.919) and third in goals against average (2.88). His GAA this winter is the second-best in PSU history, slightly better than the 2.89 mark he put up last season. Helgesson posted a 15-8-1 record, which tied for the second-most number of wins in the league, and he made 759 saves, second most in a season in school history.
LaCroix (far left) and Kane (left) anchored the Panther offense that went from 92 goals a year ago to 114 goals this season. They both scored 18 goals to share the team lead and tie for fourth in the league. A 5'8", 170-pound junior, LaCroix added 15 assists in 26 games and was as the only player in the league to be named Player of the Week twice this season. It was a breakout season for LaCroix, who finished with 33 points this winter after totaling 21 points in his first two years combined. A 5'8", 170-pound senior, Kane enjoyed a strong senior season to complete an outstanding career for the Panthers. He led the team in scoring for the third straight year with a career-best 35 points, and he finished his career with 59 goals, 53 assists and 112 points to rank third on the school's all-time goals list and fourth on the all-time points list.
A 5'10", 185-pound defenseman, Turcotte (right) skated a regular shift on the PSU defense which allowed the second-fewest number of goals in the league. He also collected four goals and 15 assists, tying him for seventh in the league in scoring among all defenseman and ranking third among rookie blueliners.
These four players were some of the keys to the Panther team that finished with a 16-9-1 overall record under coach Brett Tryder. The 16 wins is the third-most in school history, trailing only the 1993-94 team that finished 17-8-0 and the 1985-86 Panthers that own the school record with a 19-6-0 mark.
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