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Amanda Kessel named Kazmaier Award winner @NHLdotcom

University of Minnesota forward Amanda Kessel was named the winner of the Patty Kazmaier Award on Saturday as the top player in Division I women's hockey.

Kessel, a junior who is the sister of Toronto Maple Leafs forward Phil Kessel, was named from a group of finalists that included Golden Gophers senior teammates defenseman Megan Bozek and goaltender Noora Raty.

Minnesota is 40-0-0 heading into the NCAA title game Sunday against Boston University.

Kessel leads the nation with 44 goals and 53 assists.

Kazmaier Award winner Amanda Kessel

"Amanda has had a historic season. Her domination on the ice this year has been nothing short of phenomenal," Minnesota coach Brad Frost said in a statement. "The number of points that she compiled is just one indication of her impact on our team.

"She has proved to be the most dynamic offensive threat in all of NCAA women's hockey, but her contribution goes much farther. She has grown into a complete two-way player, playing at an elite level in the defensive zone, on the penalty kill, and certainly in the offensive zone. Her domination of the statistical categories speaks for itself."

Kessel has a point in 33 of the 36 games she has played this season and has 29 multipoint games, including 11 with at least four and 20 games with at least three. She helped the Golden Gophers capture the Western Collegiate Hockey Association regular-season and postseason titles.

The Kazmaier Award, given by USA Hockey, is the equivalent to the men's Hobey Baker Award.

Kessel, from Madison, Wis., is the second Kazmaier Award winner from her university, following Krissy Wendell in 2005.

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