Duluth, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) --- Duluth native and UMD senior captain Jack Connolly was named the winner of the 2012 Hobey Baker award on Friday afternoon, capping off an amazing collegiate career with the top individual honor in men's college hockey.
The Hobey Baker award is given annually to the best player in men's college hockey and was presented Friday at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, FL.
Connolly becomes fifth-ever Bulldog to win the award and only the second-ever Duluth native, joining 1988 recipient Robb Stauber.
UMD's five Hobey Baker winners are the most of any school in the country, with Minnesota next in line with four previous winners. The four other Bulldogs to have won are Tom Kurvers, Bill Watson, Chris Marinucci, and Junior Lessard.
Connolly, a Duluth Marshall graduate, finished second in the nation this season with 60 points, with only Maine's Spencer Abbott ahead of him in total scoring.
Captaining the Bulldogs this season posed a great challenge for Connolly, and he responded by leading the team to its third NCAA tournament in the past four seasons.
He scored 197 points during his four-year career with the Bulldogs, placing him eighth among the program's all-time leading scorers. He also never missed a game in college, playing in 166 consecutive contests with UMD.
Since the season ended, Connolly has accepted two other individual awards, recognizing both his on-ice and off-ice accomplishments. He was named the Premier Player of 2012 and also was the winner of the Lowe's Senior CLASS award.
Add to that, Connolly was named the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) player of the year after leading his Bulldogs to a second place regular season finish.
Connolly was a top 10 Hobey Baker finalist in his junior season. UMD senior Travis Oleksuk and sophomore J.T. Brown were both top 30 candidates in this 2011-12 season.
He has not yet made a final decision about his potential future in professional hockey, but his father said he expects that decision to be made in the coming weeks.