Freshman goalie John Keeney named HCA Rookie of the Month

Photo by Paul McCarthy
Photo by Paul McCarthy

Jamie Foland

Fairbanks, Alaska – Alaska Nanooks freshman goalie John Keeney (Twin Peaks, Calif./Business Administration), who led all Division I goaltenders with six wins in the month of January, has been named the first Hockey Commissioners’ Association National Division 1 Rookie of the Month for 2013.

Keeney was the CCHA Rookie of the Month after starting and earning wins in all six of the Nanooks game in January. He backstopped the Blue and Gold to their most historic January in progam history as they posted three consecutive sweeps, including their first-ever of Michigan, while recording a 2.17 goals-against average and turning aside 140 shots for a .915 save percentage.

The 6-foot-1, 184 pound netminder opened 2013 with a 19-save effort in a 5-4 win at Yost over the Wolverines on Jan. 4 and stopped 30 shots the following night in a 4-1 triumph over Michigan.

From there, Alaska traveled to Notre Dame where Keeney made 43 saves in a pair of wins, 5-4 and 2-1, over the Irish.

Alaska closed out the month at home against Northern Michigan, where the Twin Peaks, Calif. native made 24 saves in a 2-1 win on Friday to snap Alaska’s 16-game winless skid against the Wildcats. On Saturday, he blocked another 24 shots in a 4-2 victory giving Alaska their sixth straight win.

Keeney is just the second player in program history to be honored with a rookie of the month award. Senior Andy Taranto (Woodridge, Ill./Communication) was the HCA National Rookie of the Month twice during the 2009-10 season.