Wisconsin’s Cole Caufield wins Hobey Baker Award

March 16, 2021; South Bend, IN, USA; Wisconsin Badgers forward Cole Caufield (8) advances the puck against the Minnesota Golden Gophers during the Big Ten hockey tournament championship game at Compton Family Ice Arena. Mandatory Credit: John Mersits/South Bend Tribune via USA TODAY NETWORK

Wisconsin’s Cole Caufield won the Hobey Baker Award as the top player in men’s Division I hockey Friday night.

A 5-foot-7 forward, Caufield led the nation with 30 goals and 52 points in 31 games as a sophomore in 2020-21. He was the unanimous choice as Big Ten Player of the Year and a first-team All-American.

“It means a lot,” Caufield told the Wisconsin State Journal. “Obviously it was something that was a goal of mine going into this year. It’s just a really special award.”

Joining him in the top three in voting were Minnesota State goaltender Dryden McKay and North Dakota forward Shane Pinto.

Caufield, a 20-year-old from Stevens Point, Wis., became the second Badgers player to win the award. Blake Geoffrion, the 2010 recipient, now is the assistant general manager of the Florida Panthers.

Caufield learned he won the award, which was announced at the NCAA Frozen Four in Pittsburgh, just hours before making his professional debut. The No. 15 overall pick of the Montreal Canadiens in 2019, he scored two goals and added an assist Friday night for their AHL affiliate, the Laval Rocket.

He signed an entry-level contract with the Canadiens last month after Wisconsin’s season ended in a loss to Bemidji State in the NCAA Tournament.

–Field Level Media