U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. – Senior Max Hartner and freshman Shane Starrett each earned two of the top seven awards at the 2016 Air Force hockey end of season banquet, presented by the Falcon Blue Line Club, on Sunday, April 3, at the Hotel Elegante in Colorado Springs.
Hartner, a winger from Greenwood Village, Colo., earned the Vic Heyliger Award and the Larry Cronk Award. The Heyliger Award, voted on by the team, is the cornerstone of Air Force hockey. It is awarded to the player whose dedication, character, leadership and work ethic exemplifies Falcon hockey. The Cronk Award, voted on by the team, is given to the team’s most inspirational player. Hartner is a back-to-back winner of the Cronk Award. From blocking shots to drawing penalties, Hartner’s value to the team goes well beyond the stat sheet. This season, the team captain helped guide a young team to a second-place finish in Atlantic Hockey and a trip to the AHC Final Four. He had four goals on the season, scoring goals in wins over Denver, Colorado College and the game-winner in the 1-0 win over Army.
Starrett earned the Chuck Delich award as the team’s most valuable player and the John Matchefts Award as the team’s top freshman. A first-team all-conference and all-rookie team selection, Starrett earned five Atlantic Hockey weekly awards and two monthly awards. He ranked 11th in the nation with a 1.92 goals-against average, the second best in school history and the second best in the nation by a freshman this season. His .924 saves percentage this season is the fourth best in the nation by a freshman and is the second best in Air Force hockey history. His four shutouts this season were tied as the best in Atlantic Hockey and the ninth best in the nation.
Johnny Hrabovsky, a junior from Hummelstown, Pa., earned the team’s Defensive Player of the Year Award. This award is presented to the player who the coaching staff feels was the team’s most diligent defensive performer. Defensive habits and skill, along with plus-minus ratio, are factors used to select the recipient. Hrabovsky was a second-team all-conference selection as he ranked third in the conference with a +14 in league games. His six goals this season were tied for third in the league among blueliners while his 13 points were eighth in the league. In all games this season, he was the Falcons’ top scoring defenseman with 15 points on seven goals and eight assists.
Senior Chris Dylewski earned the Jim Bowman Award as the team’s top scholar-athlete. Dylewski has been on the superintendent’s list for excellence in academic, athletics and military six of the seven semesters. Dylewski is a finalist for the prestigious Hockey Humanitarian Award. While majoring in international history and political science, Dylewski will attend graduate school next year.
Freshman Matt Koch was named the team’s Most Improved Player, as voted on by the team. Koch played sparingly in the first half of the season, but came on strong at the end. He played eight of the last nine games on defense and saw action in several key situations. He had four points in those final nine games. On the season, Koch played in 18 games, had five points and was a +5.