(The national champion Redmen paid tribute to eight graduating seniors at their annual awards gala. Pictured from left to right are: Marc-André Daneau, Maxime Langelier-Parent, Evan Vossen, Alexandre Picard-Hooper, Marc-Andre Dorion, Andrew Wright, Francis Verreault-Paul and Ben Morse. They are posing with the University Cup, which goes to the victors of the CIS national championship. PHOTO BY GARY RUSH)
MONTREAL - Marc-André Dorion, an all-Canadian defenceman from St. Hubert, Que., was presented with the Dr. Bobby Bell Trophy as the team's most valuable player at the 33rd annual Friends of McGill Hockey awards gala at La Brasserie Molson, Friday.
Other trophies were presented to forwards Maxime Langelier-Parent (Molson Cup; most three-star selections) of Léry, Que., Nicolas Biniek (most improved player) of Montreal, Que., and Marc-Olivier Vachon (rookie of the year) of Thetford Mines, Que.
Montreal Canadiens left-winger Mathieu Darche, who skated for McGill from 1996 to 2000, was among 120 alumni and friends on hand for the event, which paid tribute to the Redmen, who captured their first-ever University Cup as CIS national champions. The soirée also featured a surprise video with messages from Guy Boucher and Martin Raymond, both former Redmen captains and coaches who now coach in the NHL with the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Head coach Kelly Nobes paid tribute to his eight graduating seniors, presenting McGill ties, portrait photos and game-worn jerseys to Dorion, Langelier-Parent, team captain Evan Vossen of Swift Current, Sask., Alexandre Picard-Hooper of Boucherville, Que., Francis Verreault-Paul of Mashteuiatsh, Que., Andrew Wright of Toronto, Marc-André Daneau of Daveluyville, Que., and defenceman Ben Morse of Toronto.
Dorion, who became the first rearguard in school history to lead the team in scoring, tallied 51 points, including eight goals, in 45 games overall. It was a banner campaign for the three-time all-Canadian who was named as the CIS defenceman of the year for the second time in three seasons. An Academic All-Canadian and member of the Principal's Student-athlete Honour Roll, the 24-year-old physical education senior won the Forbes trophy as McGill's male athlete of the year and will be at the BLG Awards gala in Calgary next week as the RSEQ conference nomination for CIS male athlete-of-the-year honours. The 5-foot-11, 185-pounder will graduate as the top-scoring blue-liner in school history with 192 points, including 38 goals, in 174 games overall. He recently signed a two-year contract to play with EHC Linz, champions of the top-professional league in Austria.
Langelier-Parent, an alternate captain, tallied 16 goals and 16 assists in 45 contests. The speedy 6-foot-2, 225- pound centre scored a single-season school record six shorthanded markers to cap his university career with 11 shorthanded goals, also a McGill record. A 24-year-old economics senior who registered a 47-70-117 mark in 174 career games, he will play in the American Hockey League next season with the Norfolk Admirals, the top farm team of the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Biniek, a 5-foot-10, 185-pound sophomore forward, started the season on the fourth line but by the time playoffs rolled around, found himself on the team's top line. He dressed for all but one game and posted a 9-14-23 record in 44 games overall. In post-season play, the 22-year-old physical education sophomore netted five markers and a pair of assists in 10 games, including three goals at the CIS championship tourney.
Vachon, a 21-year-old mining engineering freshman, was the top-scoring rookie on the club despite missing a dozen games to injury. The 5-foot-10, 185-pound centre was the top faceoff man on the team. He scored 23 points, including a half-dozen goals, in 30 games overall.
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