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BU's Eichel named Hockey East Player of the Year

by Mike G. Morreale

Boston University freshman Jack Eichel, a projected top-two pick in the 2015 NHL Draft, was named Hockey East Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year during the league's awards banquet at the Royal Sonesta Hotel in Cambridge, Mass., on Thursday.

Boston University's Jack Eichel celebrates the Beanpot championship at TD Garden (Getty Images)

The 18-year-old right-shot center also earned the only unanimous first-team Hockey East All-Star selection.

Eichel, who was named one of 10 finalists for the Hobey Baker Award on Thursday, is the third player from Hockey East to win both awards in the same since University of Maine forward Paul Kariya in 1993 and Boston College defenseman Brian Leetch in 1987. Kariya was chosen No. 4 in the 1993 draft by the Anaheim Ducks, and Leetch was selected No. 9 in the 1986 draft by the New York Rangers.

Eichel is No. 2 on NHL Central Scouting's midterm ranking of the top skaters eligible for the 2015 draft. He had 14 goals and 44 points in 22 league games to become the eighth player in Hockey East history to average at least 2.0 points per game. He joins Craig Janney (Boston College), Dave Capuano (Maine), David Emma (Boston College), Jean-Yves Roy (Maine), Jim Montgomery (Maine), Kariya (Maine) and Jason Krog (New Hampshire). Krog was the last player to average at least 2.0 points per league game, during the 1998-99 season.

Boston University coach David Quinn was named Hockey East Coach of the Year.

Eichel leads the nation with 41 assists, 61 points and a plus-42 rating in 34 games. He'll lead Boston University against the University of New Hampshire in the semifinal round of the Hockey East Tournament on Friday at TD Garden in Boston. The University of Vermont and UMass-Lowell play in the other semifinal.

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