BLOOMINGTON, Minn.—Northern Michigan University Men's Ice Hockey (20-11-2, 18-6-2-2 WCHA) sophomore defenseman Philip Beaulieu (Duluth, Minnesota) was named Western Collegiate Hockey Association Defensive Player of the Week the league office announced Monday afternoon. Additionally, the Wildcats moved up to No. 17 in the latest USCHO.com rankings, up three spots from last week.
It is Beaulieu's second weekly conference award of the season, earning the same honor three weeks ago. He fueled the Wildcats to a 4-1 victory in Saturday's contest with the University of Alaska-Fairbanks earning a pair of assists and a plus/minus rating of plus-four. On the defensive end, Beaulieu blocked a pair of shots and helped hold the Nanooks to just two goals on the weekend.
For the season, Beaulieu owns 28 points on nine goals and 19 assists. He leads league defensemen in goals scored and is tied for second with 28 points. Beaulieu's 28 points are also tied for second among all NCAA defenseman.
Beaulieu's award is the ninth of the season for the Wildcats with six different players earning weekly honors. Senior forward Robbie Payne (Gaylord, Michigan), senior defenseman Jordan Klimek (Langley, British Columbia) and Beaulieu have all earned two WCHA weekly awards this season.
The Wildcats rose to No. 17 after a pair of victories over the University of Alaska-Fairbanks that improved their home win streak in the Berry to eight games. On Friday, junior forward Denver Pierce (Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan) scored his second overtime game-winning goal in of the season to secure a Wildcat win. On Saturday, NMU cruised to a 4-1 win to earn the sweep.
In the USA Today/College Hockey Magazine Poll, NMU is just outside the top-15 with 12 votes.
The Wildcats will get this weekend off before their final series of the regular season. Michigan Technological University will come to the Berry on Friday, February 23 for a 7 p.m. start. NMU will head to Houghton, Michigan the following night for a road contest against the Huskies to end the regular season.
NMU will also host a first round WCHA Playoff series in the Berry Events Center. Tickets for the first-round series are on sale now through all NMU Ticket Outlets. Games during the first-round series will be played on Friday and Saturday, as well as Sunday, if necessary. All game times will be 7 p.m.