No. 6 Wolverines win WHAC Tournament, LaBurn named WHAC Player of the Year

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Senior Nic LaBurn won the WHAC Player of the Year award after a terrific 2019-20 season. Photo//UM-Dearborn Athletics

Last Saturday, the No. 6 UM-Dearborn men’s hockey team played Lawrence Tech University in the WHAC Postseason Tournament semifinals for a trip to the conference championship game. The contest was played at the Farmington Ice Arena in Farmington Hills, Michigan.

Senior forward Justin Dunn scored a power-play goal to give the Wolverines the lead midway through the second. Lawrence Tech scored two goals to take the lead entering the third before UM-Dearborn scored four goals to win the game by a score of 5-2. 

Dunn scored his second goal of the game, while freshmen forward Mikhail Khudenko, freshmen forward Brendan West, and junior forward Billy Brock each added a goal. 

Senior Thomas Proudlock made 20 saves to help send UM-Dearborn to the championship game. 

UM-Dearborn returned to the Farmington Ice Arena the next to take on Aquinas in the championship game. The Wolverines hoped to carry the momentum from their third period against LTU into the championship game.

Aquinas scored less than three minutes into the game, but the Wolverines answered with three unanswered goals to take a 3-1 lead midway through the second. Aquinas cut the deficit to one entering the final frame, but UM-Dearborn held on and ultimately won the game 4-2. The win gave the Wolverines their second WHAC Postseason Tournament championship. 

Khudenko, freshmen forward Anthony Davis, junior forward Dawson Richard, and senior forward Nic LaBurn each scored a goal in the game. 

Proudlock made 37 saves to help the Wolverines clinch the championship. 

The Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference also announced their awards last week and several Wolverines earned recognition for their tremendous seasons. LaBurn was named the WHAC Player of the Year and made the All-WHAC First Team. The senior has 28 goals and 29 assists over 33 games this season. 

Proudlock and senior Kyle Schnettler were also named to the All-WHAC First Team, while Dunn and Brock both made the All-WHAC Second Team. Sophomore Sterling Cooper made the  Champion of Character team. Proudlock, junior Silas Johnson, and junior Sean McLaren also made the WHAC All-Academic Team. 

The Wolverines moved to (27-6-2) after their tournament success. They qualified for the ACHA DI National Tournament for the 21st time in program history and enter the tournament as the sixth seed. They open play in the round of 16 against No. 11 Davenport at 1:30 p.m. on March 21st in Frisco, Texas.