Four Named to Preseason All-Big Ten Hockey Team; Gophers Picked First

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ROSEMONT, Ill. – Four members of the Golden Gophers men’s hockey team were named to Preseason All-Big Ten teams it was released Wednesday with Matthew Knies and Brock Faber earning first team honors, while Jackson LaCombe and Logan Cooley were selected to the second team as voted upon by the Big Ten coaches.
 
As a team, Minnesota was picked to finish first in the league standings as the defending regular season champions following an 18-6 record in Big Ten play in 2021-22. The Gophers went on to make their 22nd all-time appearance at the NCAA Frozen Four after taking down Massachusetts and Western Michigan in the NCAA Worcester Regional.
 
Knies was one of just two unanimous selections on the All-Big Ten First Team and is coming off an impressive rookie season where he tallied 33 points (15 goals, 18 assists) in 33 outings. The Phoenix, Ariz., native was named the Most Outstanding Player of the Worcester Regional in last year’s NCAA Tournament and he totaled four points in three NCAA games, including the game winner over Western Michigan that sent the Gophers to the Frozen Four. Knies earned Second Team All-Big Ten honors at the end of the season after finishing second on the team in total points and was voted as the University of Minnesota’s Male Rookie of the Year.
 
Faber will serve as team captain for the Maroon and Gold this season and enters his junior year after being named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year in 2021-22. A two-time All-Big Ten selection, the Maple Grove, Minn., native skated in 32 games and recorded new career highs of 14 points behind two goals and 12 assists a year ago. In his first year at Minnesota, he picked up Big Ten Freshman of the Year honors and had a career-best, five-assist performance against Omaha at the 2021 NCAA Tournament, tying the event’s single-game record. The Gophers have posted a 16-3 record in games where Faber has registered a point over his tenure.
 
LaCombe was named an alternate captain for Minnesota in his senior campaign and is one of three players returning to the lineup with more than 100 collegiate games played under his belt. A product of Eden Prairie, Minn., he landed on the All-Big Ten Second Team, NCAA All-Region Team, and the Big Ten All-Tournament Team during the 2021-22 season. He appeared in all 39 games for Minnesota as a junior totaling new career highs of 30 points and a team-best 27 assists and also led the team with 64 blocked shots and a plus-23 rating.
 
Cooley is set to make his collegiate debut in less than two weeks after getting to campus as the second-highest draft pick in Gophers’ history. The Pittsburgh, Pa., native was taken third overall by the Arizona Coyotes in the 2022 NHL Entry Draft and is one of just two freshmen to earn Preseason All-Big Ten honors heading into the season. He ranked second on the USA Hockey NTDP with 75 points (27 goals, 48 assists) in 51 games during the 2021-22 season and posted at least one point in 42 of those outings.
 
The 2022-23 season begins in just 10 days when the Maroon and Gold welcome Lindenwood to 3M Arena at Mariucci for an Oct. 1 showdown.
MHK Preseason Poll 2022-23


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