Butler Earns Walter Brown Award
CHN Staff Report
BOSTON New Hampshire senior forward Bobby Butler was named winner of the 58th Walter Brown Award, presented annually to the best American-born college hockey player in New England.
A native of Marlboro, Mass., Butler has 27 goals and 50 points in 37 games, as UNH heads into the NCAA Tournament. He was named Hockey East’s Player of the Year, was nominated for the 2010 Hockey Humanitarian Award, and is a finalist for the 2010 Hobey Baker Award.
“Bobby is a classic power forward with a great shot – reminds you of Cam Neely,” said UNH coach Dick Umile. “But he was such a tremendous leader off the ice as well as on it. He’s an incredible role model for student athletes; he’s given a lot of his time to the community, mentoring kids and working with the Big Brother organization.”
Butler played for his father John at Marlboro High School and led his team to the Division III state championship. He also played for the Boston Junior Bruins before enrolling at UNH. He is the sixth New Hampshire player and the fifth since 2001 to win the Walter Brown Award, the oldest nationally recognized college hockey honor.
The award was established in 1953 by the members of the Massachusetts Rangers, who were coached by Brown to the 1933 World Championship in Prague, Czechoslovakia. Their 2-1 overtime win over the Toronto National Sea Fleas gave America its first world title and was the first loss ever meted out to Canada in international play.
New Hampshire earned a No. 3 seed in the 2010 NCAA East Regional and faces Cornell on Friday, March 26 in Albany, N.Y.
The other finalists were Sacred Heart's Nick Johnson and Yale's Broc Little.
A native of Windsor, Conn., Johnson finished the season with 27 and 52 points in 38 games. Sacred Heart finished with a 21-13-4 overall record, placed second in the Atlantic Hockey League, and lost in the finals of the league playoffs to RIT.
Little, a resident of Rindge, N.H., has 26 goals and 40 points in 32 games for the Bulldogs. The 20-9-3 Bulldogs won the ECAC Hockey League regular-season championship and face North Dakota in the NCAA Northeast Regional on Saturday, March 27 in Worcester, Mass.
The Gridiron Club will present the 58th Walter Brown Award to Butler at the New England Hockey Writers’ annual dinner in April.