EDINA, Minn. – Feb. 22, 2016 – For their efforts in helping their respective teams earn crucial league points last weekend, including a sweep that that vaulted one team into a tie for fourth, the men's Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) Players of the Week for Feb. 15-21, 2016 are: Alaska Anchorage sophomore forward Matt Anholt (Offensive Player of the Week), Northern Michigan senior goaltender Mathias Dahlstrom (Defensive Player of the Week) and Northern Michigan freshman defenseman James Vermeulen (Rookie of the Week).
Matt Anholt, So., F
Alaska Anchorage(Prince Albert, Saskatchewan)
Anholt had a pair of multi-point efforts, paced the WCHA with three goals, tied for the league lead with eight shots and a +4 rating, and had 13 face-off wins. Most importantly, the sophomore's two-goal contest Saturday helped Alaska Anchorage to a 5-2 win over Lake Superior State – a victory that snapped the Seawolves' three-game losing streak and kept them two points ahead of Alaska for the WCHA's eighth and final playoff spot. Anholt's two goals both came in the final 6:16 of the third period, including an empty-net strike that effectively sealed the game. The Prince Albert, Saskatchewan native also scored and had an assist in the second period Friday as UAA rallied from a two-goal deficit to tie the game 2-2, before eventually succumbing by a 3-2 final. This is Anholt's first career WCHA weekly award.
Also nominated: J.T. Henke, So., F, Lake Superior State (scored goals both nights, including game-winner Friday in LSSU's win at Alaska Anchorage, while also adding assist); Joel L'Esperance, So., F, Michigan Tech (had career-high four points in No. 14 MTU's win Saturday at Bemidji State); Tayler Munson, So., F, Alaska (scored the tie-breaking, game-winning, short-handed goal with 8.8 seconds remaining Friday in UAF's 2-1 win over Bowling Green); Dominik Shine, Jr., F, Northern Michigan (netted game-winning goal Friday and assisted on game-winning strike Saturday as NMU swept visiting Alabama Huntsville).
Mathias Dahlstrom, Sr., G
Northern Michigan (Smedjebacken, Sweden)
Mathias Dahlstrom, Sr., G, Northern Michigan (Smedjebacken, Sweden) Dahlstrom turned aside 33-of-34 shots on the weekend as Northern Michigan moved into a fourth-place tie with a sweep of visiting Alabama Huntsville. The senior from Smedjebacken, Sweden remained perfect in seven starts this season (6-0-0 since returning from injury Jan. 16) with the two wins, including a 19-save effort in a 3-0 triumph Friday that stood as his eighth career shutout. He then made 14 stops in a 3-1 victory Saturday as the Wildcats completed their second-straight home sweep. This is Dahlstrom's first WCHA weekly award of the 2015-16 season and his third career honor (including one Rookie of the Week accolade).
Also nominated: Jamie Phillips, Sr., G, Michigan Tech (stopped 49-of-53 shots for the weekend, and collected his WCHA-high 17th win of the season Saturday); Sean Walker, Jr. D, Bowling Green (playing on the larger Olympic ice in Fairbanks with just five healthy defensemen, had three points, a team-best +2 rating and helped hold UAF to just three goals).
James Vermeulen, Fr., D
Northern Michigan (Stony Plain, Alberta)
Vermeulen played a key role in the Northern Michigan defensive effort that held Alabama Huntsville to just 34 shots and one goal in two games, while also adding his first collegiate marker. The freshman from Stony Plain, Alberta put the finishing touches on the Wildcats' three-goal, first-period outburst Friday night with his first career goal, and was not on the ice for the Chargers' lone strike Saturday. He finished the weekend with a +2 rating. This is Vermeulen's first career WCHA weekly award.
Also nominated: Gage Torrel, Fr., F, Lake Superior State (scored a goal Saturday night that gave LSSU a 2-1 lead).