Compiled by MiCHO Staff
Wayne State announced the recipients of the 2008-09 team awards at the squad's annual season-end banquet last night at Sangria Tapas Café in downtown Royal Oak.
For the fourth consecutive year, senior forward Melissa Boal was named the team's Most Valuable Player. She was selected to the All- CHA First Team for the fourth straight season, was chosen as the CHA Offensive Player of the Week four times and was named to the CHA All-Tournament Team. Boal, who scored five game-winning goals and collected five game-winning assists, had a point in 29 of the 32 games, including 16 multiple-point performances.
Boal was also presented with the Top Gun award as the team's highest scorer. She led the team with 57 points and 31 goals, finishing third and second in the conference in those respective categories. She set school records with 34 CHA points and 18 CHA goals, and tied her own school records with 26 power-play points and three short-handed goals. Boal finished sixth nationally in points per game (1.78), fifth in goals per game (0.97) and tied for sixth in power-play goals (10).
In addition, Boal and fellow senior Sam Poyton were recognized for several of the significant career milestones they achieved this season.
Boal became the fifth 100-goal scorer in recorded NCAA Division I women's hockey history with her first of two goals December 5 at Niagara. She earned her 200th career point with a goal January 23 at Syracuse, and collected her 100th assist with her second of the game February 20 at Robert Morris. She is one of four players to compile over 100 goals and 100 assists.
Poyton followed Boal as the sixth 100-goal scorer in NCAA history January 17 against Robert Morris. She also tied a national record with her 27th game-winning goal February 20 at RMU.
Taking Best Defensive Player honors was senior Natalie Payne. The Mercyhurst transfer became the first defenseman in WSU women's hockey history to earn All-CHA First Team honors and was named to the CHA All-Tournament Team. Payne led all CHA defensemen with 32 points and tied for the national lead among blueliners with a 1.00 points per game average. She set single-season school records for points, goals and assists by a defenseman, had the eighth-best plus/minus rating in school history (+19), and recorded a point in every series, having never been held off the scoresheet for two consecutive games.
Jill Szandzik became the first defenseman to be named Wayne State's Rookie of the Year. She was selected to the CHA All-Rookie Team after leading all first-year defensemen in the conference with 16 points. Szandzik broke Chelsea Burnett's school record for points in a season by a rookie defenseman and posted the ninth-best plus/minus rating in school history (+17).
The Most Improved Player award went to freshman forward Micheline Frappier. Frappier finished 14th among all rookies in the CHA with nine points in 26 games. Four of her six assists came on game-winning goals, including one January 2 at St. Cloud State. The next day, she scored two power-play goals, including the game-tying goal, against North Dakota and was named CHA Rookie of the Week.
Senior forward Lindsay DiPietro was presented with the Captain's Award as well as the Warrior Award. DiPietro earned a selection to the All-CHA Second Team for the third time in her career after finishing fourth in the league with 48 points, fourth with 29 assists, and sixth with a career-high 19 goals. She tied for 14th in the nation with a 1.50 points per game average and tied for 10th in assists per game at 0.90. She completed her career as Wayne State's all-time leader with 132 assists, sixth-most in NCAA history.
DiPietro also received the President's Award for having the highest grade-point average on the team. A finance major with a 3.96 grade-point average, DiPietro was selected to the CHA All-Academic Team three times and has been named to the Athletic Director's Honor Roll (term gpa 3.5+) all seven semesters of her career. She received the Financial Executives International Award last month, an honor given to the top accounting or finance student nearing graduation from each business school in southeastern Michigan.