WAKEFIELD, Mass. - Darren Haydar (Milton, Ont.), a Hobey Baker Memorial Award finalist, and Sean Collins (Reading, Mass.) of the University of New Hampshire men's hockey team were honored by Hockey East as Player of the Week and Rookie of the Week, respectively, on Monday. Over the weekend, the duo helped lead the Wildcats to their first Hockey East tournament championship with a 3-1 victory March 16 against Maine at the FleetCenter.
Haydar, a senior center and captain who was named Hockey East Player of the Month twice (November, December), won the award for the second consecutive week and fifth time overall this season. He was honored as Most Valuable Player of the Hockey East Tournament Championships and to the All-Tournament Team by recording one goal and three assists over the weekend and a tourney-best eight points overall.
Against 13th-ranked UMass-Lowell in Friday's semifinal, Haydar gave the Wildcats a 1-0 first-period lead, then set up Kevin Truelson's go-ahead goal (3-2) in the middle stanza that gave the 'Cats the lead for good. In the title game against No. 7 Maine, Haydar assisted on both third-period goals that broke a 1-1 tie and propelled UNH to the championship crown.
Haydar enters the NCAA Championships with a team-best 74 points on 31 goals, which is tied for the team lead, and 43 assists, which is a team high.
Collins, who won the top rookie honor for the third time and was also honored by Hockey East as Rookie of the Month in October and December, recorded a goal and an assist over the weekend. His power-play goal at 1:16 of the third period in the Hockey East title game broke a 1-1 tie and proved to be the game-winning goal. In the semifinal matchup against UMass-Lowell, he set up the game's first goal scored by Haydar.
Collins enters the NCAAs ranked third on the team in both points (42) and goals (19) and is fourth in assists (23).
New Hampshire, ranked No. 1 in the nation with a 29-6-3 overall record, returns to action March 24 in an NCAA Tournament second-round game against the winner of the Cornell University vs. Quinnipiac University winner. Game time at the Worcester Centrum is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. With a victory, UNH would advance to the Frozen Four, which will be held April 4-6 at the XCel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minn.