ROCHESTER, NY – Senior forward Matt Garbowsky (St. George, Ontario/Powell River Kings) of the RIT men’s hockey team, took home a trio of individual honors, as the Atlantic Hockey Conference announced its 2014-15 award winners at the annual pre-tournament reception, held at Blue Cross Arena on Thursday, March 19. Garbowsky was named Player of the Year and Best Defensive Forward, and won the Regular Season Scoring Award.
Earlier in the day, Garbowsky was named a one of 10 finalists for the Hobey Baker Award, college hockey’s most prestigious individual honor. Simon Lambert was also a top-10 finalist in 2008.
Garbowsky becomes the first RIT player to earn Atlantic Hockey Player and Defensive Player of the Year in nine years in the league. He joins Lambert (2008) as the second player to earn AHC leading scorer honors.
Last week, Garbowsky was named a unanimous All-Atlantic Hockey first team selection.
“Matt Garbowsky (St. George, Ontario/Powell River Kings) is the most complete player I’ve had the opportunity to coach here at RIT,” said RIT head coach Wayne Wilson. “Being named Atlantic Hockey Conference Player of the Year is a great honor but being named Defensive Player of the Year while leading the conference in both goals and points says everything you need to know about Matt’s game.”
Garbowsky, RIT’s captain, is enjoying an incredible senior season for the Tigers. A three-time AHC Player of the Week, Garbowsky leads Division I with 635 face-off wins, is tied for second with 26 goals, tied for fourth with 50 points, and tied for fifth nationally with a plus-25 rating. He led the league in scoring during league play with 44 points on 23 goals and 21 assists in 28 league contests and recorded 12 multiple-point outings this season, including a pair of hat-tricks.
Garbowsky became the seventh player in RIT’s Division I history to reach 100 career points, doing so on Feb. 14 at Holy Cross. He has 48 goals and 62 career assists in 124 games. His 110 points are tied for fifth best at RIT in the Division I era.
The Tigers head to Blue Cross Arena in downtown Rochester for the Atlantic Hockey Conference championship weekend. On Friday, the third-seeded Tigers face No. 2 seed Canisius in the second AHC semifinal at 8:35 p.m. If RIT wins, they will play the winner of No. 1 seed Robert Morris and fifth-seeded Mercyhurst in the championship on Saturday at 7:05 p.m. The winner of the AHC Championship will advance to the NCAA Division I Tournament.