Abbotsford’s Jordan Kawaguchi, shown here with North Dakota, is one of the ten finalists for the Hobey Baker award. (File photo)

Abbotsford’s Kawaguchi in top-10 for Hobey Baker award

Former Chilliwack Chiefs captain in the running for prestigious college hockey award

Abbotsford’s Jordan Kawaguchi has been named as one of the top-10 finalists for the prestigious Hobey Baker award.

The Hobey Baker award is given annually to the top player in NCAA hockey.

The 10 finalists were selected by voting from all 60 Division I head coaches plus online fan balloting.

Past notable winners of the award include: Hockey Hall of Famer Paul Kariya (1993), former Vancouver Canucks great Brendan Morrison (1997), former Canucks goalie Ryan Miller (2001) and more recently Buffalo Sabres star Jack Eichel (2015).

Kawaguchi played a key role for the University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks as they captured the National Collegiate Hockey Conference regular season title. The junior forward who is an assistant captain at UND earned 45 points to finish second in the nation in scoring. He proved himself in clutch situations with 13 game-winning points, including five game-winning goals.

Kawaguchi played four full seasons with the British Columbia Hockey League’s Chilliwack Chiefs from 2013 to 2017, notching 242 points in 215 regular-season games and another 82 in 55 playoff games. He finished second in league scoring in 2016-17 with 85 points in 55 games and was named a first-team BCHL all-star. He also served as the team’s assistant captain one season and its captain for two seasons.

RELATED: Chilliwack Chiefs record means a lot to captain Kawaguchi

The next round of voting will see the 30-member selection committee, as well an additional round of fan balloting through the Hobey website from March 19 to 29, determine this year’s Hobey Baker winner.

The Hobey Hat Trick (three finalists) will be named on April 2 and the winner will be announced on April 10.

To vote on the award, visit hobeybaker.com/vote.

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