The Hobey Baker award is the one of the most coveted individual accolades that a collegiate student-athlete could achieve. Last year, the Pioneers saw their NHL-bound captain, Will Butcher, win this prestigous award.
The Pioneers are once again well-represented, as Henrik Borgström, Dylan Gambrell, and Troy Terry were all nominated for this coveted award.
Drafted by the Anaheim Ducks in the fifth round of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, Terry has had plenty of time to develop with the Denver Pioneers, as he carves his path towards playing in the NHL.
Over the past month, Terry has had multiple accomplishments coming his way. A few weeks ago, the Highlands Ranch native was announced as a member of the United States team for next month’s Winter Olympics in South Korea.
American hockey fans remember Terry for his three shootout goals in the semifinals against Russia of the 2017 World Junior Championships, where he would ultimately send them to win gold against Team Canada.
“I have had a lot of fortunate things going on in the last few years, and I am just trying to appreciate everything going on. It is special to me, and its something that I have worked for my whole life and I am starting to get rewarded for it. It has been really exciting, and my main focus right now is on Omaha this weekend. Sometimes its hard to not get caught up in all of that stuff and just focus on our team, and whats ahead of us. It is an incredible honor, and is something that is really special to me for everything that I have went through with my hockey career,” Terry said.
Drafted by the San Jose Sharks in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, the junior has been a consistent source of scoring since his freshman season in 2015-16, averaging over 40 points in each of his first two seasons with the team.
Working hard is often rewarded, and that is the case with Gambrell being named as a nominee for the coveted Hobey Baker Award.
“Obviously it is a great honor. I think it is definitely a team honor, because I would not have been considered a nominee without the help of my teammates with the season that we have had,” Gambrell said.
The Pioneers hockey program has been one of the best programs in the United States for a while, but with Butcher claiming the award last season, and these three being nominated for it this season it certainly shows the true strength of the program as a whole.
“I think it just shows how good our staff is that recruited players, and I think that it attributes to our program showing that the top-end players want to come to Denver, and be apart of the culture and program that we have here,” Gambrell said.
Borgström is the youngest in the group of three Pioneers nominated for the award. However, in only 21 games played this season, Borgström leads the team with 30 points — which comes as no surprise given his natural ability of a goal-scorer.
“Well, I don’t like to think of it to much, but of course it is a nice honor, and you know that you are doing something right. Although I have had some tough times this year too, but it feels good,” Borgström said.
Drafted by the Florida Panthers in the first round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, Borgström is another example of how talented the Pioneers are as they continue to move forward.
Fans can go to the Hobey Baker website to vote for Terry, Gambrell and Borgström to advance to the next round for this coveted award.
DU’s Reputation and the Colorado Hockey Scene
With success comes recognition, and it seems as if this has been the main saying for the past few weeks with multiple Colorado teams.
The University of Denver has had one of the best hockey programs for the past decade with multiple players making it into the NHL and having successful careers. The fact that Terry, Gambrell and Borgström are nominees for the Hobey Baker Award continues to keep Colorado hockey front and center in the hockey world.
“It is a very prestigious reward that everyone in the hockey world knows about the Hobey Baker. It just shows that we are not based on just one good player here in Denver, we have a variety of really good players. I think that it speaks volumes of the depth that we have here, and its our biggest strength,” Terry said.
With five Colorado natives on the current roster for the Denver Pioneers, head coach Jim Montgomery is able to rely on home-grown talent to continue to add depth to his already talented roster. Terry, the Olympian, is front and center of that group.
“I think that Colorado is the most underrated hockey spot in the country. Everyone thinks about Detroit, and the East Coast and those types of areas, but Colorado is producing good players, and now I think that people are really starting to notice it, and it speaks a lot to how many players on this team here and are making an impact on this team. We have a great program here, and they are looking to Colorado for players, and I think that it speaks volumes.” Terry said.