Jones twins early-award nominees

Montrose twins Connor and Kellen Jones are in the early running for the most prestigious award in Division 1 NCAA college hockey.

Montrose twins Connor and Kellen Jones are in the early running for the most prestigious award in Division 1 NCAA college hockey.

The 23-year-old brothers play for the Quinnipiac Bobcats of the Eastern Collegiate Athletics Conference and were recently nominated for the Hobey Baker Memorial Award given to the top player in NCAA men’s hockey.

The twins are included along with 66 other nominees on the Hobey Baker Award website where fans are encouraged to vote for their favourite player, allowing one vote per day, until the selection committee narrows it down to the top 10.

The Joneses have played alongside each other their whole lives and carried the Bobcats to a berth in the NCAA championship game last season, as well as winning a pair of RBC Cups with the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers in 2009 and 2010.

This season both Connor and Kellen were the fifth pair of brothers in NCAA history to reach the 100-point mark in their university hockey careers, and were featured in Sports Illustrated’s “Faces in the Crowd” for reaching the elusive mark.

The twins are second and third in Bobcats team scoring, Connor has seven goals and 16 assists this season, while Kellen has posted a 13-16-29 in 25 games good for 12th in the nation.

While fan voting will be an element of the selectin process, the final decision will not be based on voting alone. The highest consideration by the Hobey Baker Memorial Award selection committee goes to performance both on and off the ice, academic excellence, and a strong character.

The fan voting is one of the initial stages of the three-step process. First, the head coaches of NCAA Div. I schools nominate the top three players in their league and the top three players in the nation. College hockey fans can also vote online at this time—and fan voting can be an important factor in the balloting outcome. Price Waterhouse Coopers tabulates the votes and the top 10 candidates are announced.

Voting then begins to weed wwthe top-10 down to the final three players. The primary voting in this part of the process is by the selection committee, a geographically balanced group of 27 individuals representing print and electronic sports media, college hockey coaches and officials, and NHL scouts. Fans may also vote online for their favorite candidate during this phase of the process.

After the three finalists, aka the “Hobey Hat Trick”, are announced, the countdown begins toward the crowning of the award winner in a nationally televised ceremony.

Go online to vote for Connor or Kellen or both at hobeybaker.com