Friday, April 06, 2012

Jack Connolly Wins Senior CLASS Award

In what we can only hope is the first of two major national college hockey honors coming his way this week, UMD senior center Jack Connolly has won the 2012 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award.

Connolly, a three-time WCHA All-Academic, will likely be named an All-American player for the third straight year Friday.

Here is the press release on the Senior CLASS Award:

Minnesota Duluth All-American Jack Connolly has been selected as the 2012 Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award winner in NCAA® Division I men’s ice hockey. The announcement and trophy presentation were made today by Lowe’s, an official Corporate Partner of the NCAA, during the NCAA Men’s Frozen Four®.

The award, chosen by a nationwide vote of Division I men’s ice hockey head coaches, national media and fans, is given annually to the most outstanding senior student-athlete in NCAA Division I men’s ice hockey. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition.

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

“Winning the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award means a lot to me and the UMD hockey program,” Connolly said. “I always try to do my best in everything that I do whether it be hockey, school or helping out in the community. I am truly honored and proud to receive this prestigious award.”

A three-time Western Collegiate Hockey Association All-Academic team pick, Connolly is scheduled to graduate this spring with a degree in communication. During his college career, he interned in the UMD sports information office and wrote a blog for the department’s website. Throughout his years on campus, Connolly has volunteered for the Boys and Girls Club of Duluth, the Pucks for Poverty Program, the Northern Lights Foundation, the Adopt-A-Highway Program and various cancer fundraisers.

"’Class’ is one of the best ways to describe Jack Connolly, so this is certainly a fitting and well deserved honor for him,” head coach Scott Sandelin said. “Everything he does – on and off the ice – he does with class.  I really can't say enough about what this young man has meant to our program, our school and our community over the past four years.”

On the ice, the three-time All-American and team captain has ranked among the NCAA’s leaders in scoring and assists and has been a finalist for the Hobey Baker Memorial Award for each of the past two seasons. After a seven-year absence, the UMD Bulldogs made it back to the NCAA Frozen Four in 2011, winning the national championship with an overtime victory against Michigan.

“Jack Connolly got to realize his dream of playing hockey for his hometown university,” said David Geren, Lowe’s vice president of marketing. “Because of all he has done in the classroom, on the ice and in the community, he has truly lived the dream to its fullest. Lowe’s salutes Jack for his dedication to the university and the entire city of Duluth.”

For more information on all the finalists, visit

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Men’s Ice Hockey First-Team All-Americans
Chad Billins, Defender, Ferris State
Jack Connolly, Center, Minnesota-Duluth
Ryan Flanigan, Forward, Merrimack
Keir Ross, Defender, Cornell
Paul Weisgarber, Forward, Air Force

Men’s Ice Hockey Second-Team All-Americans
Sean Duddy, Defender, Ohio State
Scott Greenham, Goaltender, Alaska-Fairbanks
Sean Lorenz, Defender, Notre Dame
Jack Maclellan, Forward, Brown
Cody Reichard, Goaltender, Miami (Ohio)

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