UAA senior center Matt Bailey on Thursday became just the second Seawolf to earn first-team All-Western Collegiate Hockey Association honors and UAF senior center Cody Kunyk topped a slew of Nanook award winners as the circuit's Player of the Year.
Bailey and Kuynk are the first-line centers in a best-of-3, first-round playoff battle between Alaska rivals that began Thursday night in Fairbanks.
Bailey, a skilled pivot who plays with an edge, led UAA in regular-season scoring, and bagged 12-15--27 totals and a plus-10 rating in 28 league games. He also earned his third WCHA All-Academic Team honor.
The only previous UAA player to be voted onto the WCHA's first team was freshman goaltender Gregg Naumenko, who was honored in 1999 and immediately parlayed that into an NHL contract that included a $1 million signing bonus from the Anaheim Ducks.
Kunyk, who led scorers in WCHA games (17-17--34 in 28 games) to win the league's scoring championship, cemented his bona fides with a four-goal game against UAA a week ago. He's also an All-Academic honoree.
Bailey's award was the lone recognition UAA received in balloting for all-league and major awards. Each of the circuit's 10 teams received four ballots, to be filled out by coaches, assistant coaches, captains or sports information directors.
Five Nanooks scored honors.
Sophomore defenseman Colton Parayko, a 6-foot-5 defenseman who defends strongly and possesses a wicked wrist shot, was voted Defensive Player of the Year after putting up 4-14--18 totals in 28 league games. League coaches alone vote for that award.
Parayko was joined on the first team by Minnesota State-Mankato forward Matt Leitner, Mankato defenseman Zach Palmquist and Ferris State goaltender C.J. Motte.
Racking a second-team honor was UAF senior winger Colton Beck (11-19--30 in 28 games). Third-team honors went to Nanooks sophomore center Tyler Morley (15-14--29 in 25 games) and All-Rookie honors went to UAF winger Marcus Basara (9-12--21 in 28 games).
Especially impressive are the members of UAF's first line, all of whom earned honors -- Kunyk centers Beck, a left wing, and Basara, a right wing.
Ferris State's Bob Daniels, who guided the Bulldogs to the league title, was voted Coach of the Year by his peers.
UAA landed 16 players on the All-Academic team and UAF landed 18.
Find Doyle Woody's blog at adn.com/hockeyblog.
2013-14 WCHA Award Winners
Player of the Year -- Cody Kunyk, forward, senior, UAF. Outstanding Student-Athlete of the Year -- Chad Brears, forward, sophomore, University of Alabama in Huntsville. Defensive Player of the Year -- Colton Parayko, defenseman, sophomore, UAF. Rookie of the Year -- Alex Globke, forward, freshman, Lake Superior State University. Scoring Champion -- Cody Kunyk, forward, senior, UAF, 17-17--34 in 28 league games. Goaltending Champion -- Cole Huggins, freshman, goaltender, Minnesota State University, 17-4-1, 1.73, .927. Coach of the Year -- Bob Daniels, Ferris State University.
Forwards -- Cody Kunyk UAF, 28 gp, 17-17--34; Matt Bailey, UAA, 28 gp, 12-15--27; Matt Leitner, Minnesota State-Mankato, 26 gp, 8-25--33. Defense -- Colton Parayko, UAF, 28 gp, 4-14--18; Zach Palmquist, Minnesota State-Mankato, 28 gp, 3-16--19. Goaltender -- C.J. Motte, Ferris State, 19-6-2, 2.29, .92
Forwards -- Jean-Paul Lafontaine, Minnesota Stat-Mankato, 28 gp, 16-16--32; Colton Beck, UAF, 28 gp, 11-19--30; Garrett Thompson, Ferris State, 28 gp, 11-7--18. Defense -- Scott Czarnowczan, Ferris State, 28 gp, 4-13--17; Kevin Czuczman, Lake Superior State, 28 gp, 6-9--15. Goaltender -- Cole Huggins, Minnesota State-Mankato, 17-4-1, 1.73, .927.
Forwards -- Tyler Morley, UAF, 25 gp, 15-14--29; Zach Lehrke, Minnesota State-Mankato, 24 gp, 7-18--25; Johnny McInnis, Minnesota State-Mankato, 28 gp, 17-11--28. Defense -- Matt Prapavessis, Bemidji State; 28 gp, 5-12--17; Jason Binkley, Ferris State, 26 gp, 2-16--18. Goaltender -- Kevin Kapalka, Lake Superior State, 8-9-0, 2.62, .924.
Forwards --Alex Globke, Lake Superior State, 28 gp, 9-12--21; Marcus Basara, UAF, 28 gp, 9-12--21; Kyle Schempp, Ferris State , 28 gp, 6-12--18. Defense -- Shane Hanna, Michigan Tech, 28 gp, 4-18--22; Ruslan Pedan, Bemidji State, 28 gp, 3-8--11; Sean Flanagan, Minnesota State-Mankato, 24 gp, 5-6--11. Goaltender -- Cole Huggins, Minnesota State-Mankato, 17-4-1, 1.73, .927.
UAA and UAF All-Academic Honorees
University of Alaska Anchorage: Scott Allen, Matt Bailey, Brett Cameron, Austin Coldwell, Chris Kamal, Blake Leask, Ben Matthews, Michael Matyas, Bobby Murphy, Stephen Obarzanek, Andrew Pettitt, Kory Roy, Austin Sevalrud, Quinn Sproule, Blake Tatchell, Hayden Trupp.
University of Alaska Fairbanks: Josh Atkinson, Colton Beck, Sean Cahill, Trevor Campbell, Richard Coyne, Matt Friese, Alec Hajdukovich, Nolan Huysmans, Nolan Kaiser, John Keeney, Cody Kunyk, Tyler Morley, Colton Parayko, Garrick Perry, J.D. Peterson, Michael Quinn, Justin Tateson, Nolan Youngmun.
By DOYLE WOODY