GRAND FORKS, N.D. – University of North Dakota fans can cast their vote for senior captain Dillon Simpson in the 2014 Hobey Baker Award fan balloting, which began today.
The Hobey Baker award recognizes the top player in NCAA Division I men’s hockey each year and fans can submit one vote every 24 hours by visiting www.hobeybaker.com. Last year UND fans made North Dakota senior center Corban Knight the runaway winner in Phase I and II of fan voting and Knight, along with teammate Danny Kristo, eventually was named one of ten national finalists for the most prestigious award in NCAA Division I men’s hockey.
Simpson, UND’s youngest captain in more than 20 years, was named to the 2013-14 College Hockey News’ Preseason All-CHN Second Team and has lived up to that billing so far this season. A two-time NCHC Defenseman of the Week, the Edmonton, Alberta native leads all NCHC defensemen in scoring and is tied for third in the league’s scoring race with 11 points (3 goals, 8 assists) in 12 conference games. He also leads all skaters in assists (8) and power-play points (6).
In 20 overall games this season, Simpson has four goals and nine assists to tie for fourth among NCHC defensemen in scoring and he leads the conference with 49 blocked shots, tying him for eighth nationally. He has reached the scoresheet in six of seven games during UND’s current 7-game winning streak – the longest active streak in the nation – with three goals and four assists in that stretch.
Simpson enters the week having recorded 13 goals and 52 assists in 134 career games at UND. He was selected by the Edmonton Oilers in the fourth round (92nd overall) of the 2011 National Hockey League Entry Draft.
Earlier this season, Simpson was named one of 20 national candidates for the Senior CLASS Award, which recognizes notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition. A managerial finance and corporate accounting major with a 3.613 cumulative grade point average, Simpson was a two-time All-WCHA Academic Team selection and a two-time WCHA Scholar-Athlete. He twice received UND’s Rick & Lori Lee Impact Scholarship and this season he received the Marcus & Lynn Chorney Men’s Hockey Scholarship Endowment.This first phase of fan balloting will run now through March 9, 2014. Phase two of fan balloting will begin on March 20 from the list of Top Ten Hobey Baker finalists. The fans’ vote accounts for a full one percent of the total ballot in each phase in selecting this year’s award recipient. The 2014 Hobey Baker Award winner will be announced from a field of three Hobey Hat Trick finalists on Friday, April 11, 2014 during the NCAA Frozen Four Championships in Philadelphia.