ESPNBoston.com and its High School section today announced that Ara Nazarian, sophomore center for the Malden Catholic Lancers, is the recipient of its third annual "Mr. Hockey" award, presented to the top male high school hockey player in Massachusetts.
The Mr. Hockey Award winner was chosen by a panel of experts made up of ESPNBoston.com staff, correspondents and high school hockey coaches. Nazarian will be presented with the award at a later date.
“Ara immediately became an impact player last year as a freshman in Malden Catholic’s Super 8 run,” said Scott Barboza, co-editor of ESPN Boston High Schools and coordinator of the site’s hockey coverage. “He reaffirmed his position as one of the state’s top talents, regardless of league, during this year’s tournament, turning in one of the finest postseason performances in recent memory.”
Nazarian helped the Lancers to their third straight Super 8 tournament title last Sunday in a 3-2 win over Austin Prep. He is the first underclassman to be honored with the award.
The Boxford resident tallied 26 goals and 22 assists for 48 points during the regular season. But Nazarian saved his best for the state’s biggest stage, putting up 9-5-14 totals in Super 8 play, including a staggering four short-handed goals for the tournament and a hat trick in MC’s semi-final win over Catholic Memorial.
“I couldn’t be happier for Ara,” said Lancers coach John McLean, who has coached Nazarian since he was at the mites level. “He is a tremendous hockey player with a very bright future and, more importantly, he is a great young man. His on-ice abilities and leadership skills are second to none.”
Nazarian has yet to make a college commitment, but was selected by the Des Moines Buccaneers in the sixth round of last year’s United States Hockey League Futures Draft.