CASTLETON, Vt. – After helping their team to its first winning record in three seasons, two defensemen for the Castleton men's hockey team have been honored with end-of-season accolades by the New England Hockey Conference.
Thornton was the top scoring defenseman for Castleton, tying for the team lead with 14 assists in his senior season while adding a goal for 15 total points. His 43 career points rank sixth all-time for Spartan defenders, tying his career high in points this season. Thornton was a key member of the Spartan power play, helping run the point on the top unit. He had three power-play assists this season, as well as a shorthanded assist. His 12 assists in conference play ranked him in the top 10 among all players, and he was tied for fourth among defensemen in scoring in the conference.
Taylor landed on the All-Rookie Team following his breakout performance over the final four games, registering at least one point in each game while racking up eight points over the span. He had three multi-point games at the blue line this season, notching a career-high four points in a win over Daniel Webster to end the regular season. Taylor was also the top scoring defenseman among NEHC rookies in conference action, tallying a total of 12 points in conference play with two goals and 10 assists. His 1.0 points-per-game average in conference play ranked him third among rookies, and he was tied for ninth overall in scoring among NEHC defensemen for full-season scoring, with 14 points.
Colin Larkin and Ryan Cusin of UMass-Boston were named Player and Rookie of the Year, respectively, while New England College's Brett Kilar earned Goaltender of the Year honors. Norwich's Mike McShane was named the Coach of the Year after leading his team to the No. 1 spot in the national rankings and the top seed in the upcoming NEHC tournament.
All nine teams in the conference had at least one player named to an All-Conference team, with Castleton being one of six teams to have multiple players honored. To view the full NEHC release, click here.
The Spartans host Skidmore on Saturday in the NEHC quarterfinals at 7 p.m. at Spartan Arena.