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THE HOBEY BAKER CHASE

Tuesday, 01.15.2008 / 8:24 PM / Features
By Heath Price-Khan
Chad Kolarik
The Phoenix Coyotes college prospects were hard at work over the weekend stuffing the stats sheets all across the nation. This special group of intercollegiate athletes continues to make their case for the Hobey Baker Award. In this edition of our Campus Report we shine the spotlight on five guys that delivered big performances.

The Michigan Wolverines are led by three future Phoenix Coyotes and ranked #1 in the nation. Kevin Porter has been making headlines this season as the nation’s leading scorer for most of the year, but this weekend we start with his linemate Chad Kolarik who showed he has a knack for finding the back of the net.

On Friday night, Kolarik started his scoring binge with a goal and two assists in leading Michigan to a 6-1 victory over Western Michigan. The next night against WMU he showed why Coyotes fans should be pretty excited about the future when he buried four goals as the Wolverines rolled again 5-1. With five goals and seven points total on the weekend Kolarik moved into 6th place in the nation in scoring with 31 points (17 goals, 14 assists). He was the obvious choice for CCHA Conference Player of the Week!

The man Kolarik is chasing for the scoring title is his partner in crime Kevin Porter. The
Kevin Porter
Michigan forward has been a scoring machine in his senior campaign at Ann Arbor. Porter chipped in with a goal and two assists in Friday’s win, and followed that up with three assists Saturday during Kolarik’s goal scoring outburst. With six points on the weekend, Porter cemented himself as the leading candidate for college hockey’s version of the Heisman Trophy. He leads the nation in scoring with 37 points (20 goals, 17 assists).

The third member of the three amigos in “Maize and Blue” is defenseman Chris Summers who returned to school after a great performance for Team USA at the World Junior Championship. Summers tallied a goal and an assist on Friday and also chipped in a helper on Saturday. The former number #1 draft pick continues to be a force at both ends of the ice.

Kyle Turris tasted gold at the World Junior Championship and now the freshman phenom is back leading the Badgers attack. On Friday night, the Badgers fell to Denver 3-2 with Turris getting a second period assist.  The next night the #3 overall pick in the 2007 entry draft came up big with 2 goals including a shorthanded tally as Wiconsin pounded Denver 7-2. Turris leads this storied program with 22 points (9 goals, 13 assists) and continues to get better with each game.

Kyle Turris - CP Photo
The final member of the Coyotes “Collegiate Big 5” is 6’4” Blake Wheeler who is another former #1 pick. Wheeler did not get on the board Friday in a loss to St. Cloud State, but on Saturday he lit the lamp and set up a goal as the Gophers battled to a 4-4 tie. Wheeler continues to lead Minnesota in scoring with 22 points (12 goals, 10 assists).

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to check out these stars of the future in action as the College Hockey season heads into the home stretch. This upcoming weekend on the 18th & 19th Minnesota battles arch rival Minnesota-Duluth and both games are on FSN North which you may get through your cable or dish provider. The following weekend on the 25th and 26th they battle Turris and Wisconsin. The first game is on FSN North, and the second on CSTV. Before that showdown with Minnesota, the Badgers play two with Alaska-Anchorage in Alaska. The game on the 18th is on FSN Wisconsin so some of you may be able to catch Turris in action. The Big Blue Wrecking Crew of Michigan will also be on TV this weekend. They battle the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame on CSTV this Friday the 18th.  Then on the 25th & 26th it gets nasty when they take on the Michigan State Spartans for state bragging rights. Both of those games will be on FSN Detroit so set your TIVO or tune in live to all the action!

 
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