Canisius College goalie Charles Williams named Hobey Baker Award finalist

By William Douglas, The Color of Hockey

Canisius College goaltender Charles Williams is a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award, the coveted prize for the top NCAA Division I men’s hockey player.

Williams, a transfer graduate student who’s enjoying an outstanding year between the pipes for the tiny Buffalo college, was one of 10 players chosen as Hobey Baker finalists by the NCAA’s 60 D-I hockey head coaches and by online voting by fans.

“It is a true honor to be mentioned with a lot of great names,” Williams told the Buffalo News Wednesday. “Being the first in school history is a great honor, too.”

The field of finalists will be whittled down to three – called the Hobey Baker hat trick – on March 30. The winner of the award will be announced April 7 during the 2017 NCAA Frozen Four tournament in Chicago.

Williams, a Canton, Michigan, native led all D-I goalies with a .946 save percentage during the 2016-17 regular season. He was tied for first with 5 shutouts and second in the nation with a 1.83 goals-against average.

He finished with a 15-6-4 record and helped backstop the Golden Griffins on a 17-game unbeaten string dating back to January. He’s also been unbeatable in the Atlantic Hockey conference tournament, leading top-seeded Canisius to the semifinals on Friday against fourth-seed Robert Morris University.

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