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Hirose named finalist for Hobey Baker Award

March 20, 2019
Junior wing Taro Hirose (17) pins the puck against the boards during the game against Wisconsin on Feb. 2, 2019. The Spartans trail the Badgers 1-0 at the end of the first period.
Junior wing Taro Hirose (17) pins the puck against the boards during the game against Wisconsin on Feb. 2, 2019. The Spartans trail the Badgers 1-0 at the end of the first period. —
Photo by CJ Weiss | The State News

After being named Big Ten Player of the Year on Tuesday, Taro Hirose advanced his prospects of earning an ever more prestigious hockey honor Wednesday.

The Big Ten’s most outstanding player and scoring champion earned a spot on the list of 10 finalists for the Hobey Baker Award. The award has been regarded as college hockey’s most prestigious award since being established in 1981. The finalists were voted on by 60 Division I college hockey coaches along with online fan voting.

Awaiting the 38th awarding of college hockey’s top honor, the finalists include three Big Ten representatives. Hirose is joined by Michigan’s Quinn Hughes and Ohio State’s Mason Jobst.

Hirose headlines the list, having already made his NHL debut on Tuesday. The Big Ten’s strength of team as well as individual talent only bolsters the former Spartan’s case for national player of the year.

The last Spartan to win this award was current Anaheim Ducks goaltender Ryan Miller, the second goalie to earn the award.

The final 10 candidates will be trimmed down to the three finalists on April 4 and the winner of the award will be announced on April 12 during the Frozen Four in Buffalo, New York.

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